British broadcasters ITV have sacked their World Cup pundit Robbie Earle, after discovering that he breached FIFA regulations by selling his press tickets on to a third party – which hopefully means we will no longer have to be subjected to his gummy, dribbling (yet somehow still televised) post-match nonsense for the foreseeable future.
ITV, who have already come under heavy criticism for ensuring that 1.5 million people missed England’s goal against the USA on Saturday evening, were prompted into checking on their ticket allocations upon hearing about the ‘ambush marketing’ ploy used by a Dutch beer company during the game between Holland and Denmark.
36 female Holland ‘fans’ were turfed out of the stadium during the match after FIFA found that they were part of a marketing ploy used by a non-FIFA-licensed brand of beer.
Upon hearing of the incident, ITV investigated and found that Earle’s tickets had been passed on beyond the friends and family circle for whom they were intended, although whether or not the pundit’s tickets had been used to gain access to the opening Group E match is yet to be confirmed or denied.
ITV have released the following statement to confirm their position;
“Following claims by FIFA that official 2010 World Cup tickets may have been used for ambush marketing, ITV has reviewed its entire ticket allocation for the tournament.
Immediate investigations indicated that a block of ITV tickets would appear to have been used for unauthorised purposes during the Holland v Denmark match.
Further enquiries have revealed that a substantial number of tickets allocated to Robbie Earle for family and friends have been passed to a third party in breach of FIFA rules.
As a result, Robbie Earle’s contract with ITV has been terminated with immediate effect.”
A spokesman for his agent said there was no comment at this stage, although it is thought that, after finally coming to terms with his analytical limitations, Earle may have merely taken the selfless option and sacrificied himself for the greater good.