Date:Wednesday July 2 2008
Those of you who have not heard the painfully hilarious, often inane ramblings of radio producer-come-comic genius, Karl Pilkington; shame on you. For those of you that have, read on...
Karl is probably best known for the radio show he used to "produce", along with fellow comic idols Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant. Since then, the trio have released a series of Podcasts where Karl is allowed to spill the contents of his extraordinary brain, with the regular feature 'Monkey News` proving a hit with its audience. With this Karl`s popularity has risen to the global stage, and he is now considered to be one o the funniest people of his generation.
Throughout his amazing journey Karl has never forgotten his roots and speaking exclusively to Man Utd.com in a recent interview, the Manchester-born comedian talked about his introduction to United, the struggle and strife of having to wear a City shirt, his first match at Old Trafford and of course; has his view on the current crop of stars.
Speaking in his typically inimitable style, Pilkington revealed how his footballing life could have been so different.
"I`m from the Racecourse estate in Sale. Me mam bought me a City kit for Christmas, so I tried supporting them for a bit. But watching them put me off football for a few years."
Having survived a date with the devil, Pilkington set his sights onto the red half of Manchester.
'Me dad used to drive a black cab and I used to come with him and sit in the front on a crate. We'd get a few jobs at Old Trafford on matchnights and the atmosphere just felt special. I started to spend more time there when me mam got a job in Lou Macari`s chippy. That`s probably when I started supporting United."
Indeed, Karl`s claim to fame runs deeper than his radio series, after an impromptu meet with a young David Beckham in 1994.
"I was waiting at Piccadilly. It was around 1994, and I saw someone I recognised. I was convinced it was somebody I went to school with. Then my girlfriend came up and said: 'There`s David Beckham`. People look different on telly don`t they? My head always looks rounder".
Karl then recollects on his first taste of Old Trafford; an experience less memorable for the football on display, but more the creative chants of the fans.
"I didn`t really watch the match. I was more interested in an old fella singing all these funny abusive chants. He had his back to the game and just stood there singing his head off, as if he was a contestant on Stars in Their Eyes with Tourette`s.'
Since then, Karl admits he has rarely attended many United`s games, for fear of being something of a "jinx" - but makes sure to catch up with the action live via either television or radio.
"United don`t seem to play well when I go. I watch or listen to every game, though. The last game I went to was Reading away, which ended 1-1. I enjoy watching on TV because I like to see Fergie celebrate when we score. It always cheers me up seeing him jump about."
In his radio shows, Karl often cites his decision to move away from Manchester to London as a mistake - something which was no doubt going through his mind during that epic 1999 Champions League Final.
"I`d moved to London by then, and watched it round at a mate`s flat. I`d almost come to terms with the fact that we`d lost. Then Ole and Teddy came on."
Like most United fans, Karl also reserves a special place in his heart for the legendary no.7, Eric Cantona.
"There was that Nike ad: '1966 was a great year for English football - Eric Cantona was born`. He was the first player I saw at United who came along and made a huge difference."
Looking at our current squad of players and Karl foresees a bright future; citing the likes of Carrick, Anderson and Rooney as key cogs in the wheel.
"We`ve got a good team, who all work well together. I think Carrick is fitting in well and Anderson looks promising and Ronaldo gets enough praise. If I had to pick one player it would be Rooney. Proper grafter."
Well, there you go then. In the current doom and gloom our team seems to be going through just weeks after a League and European double, isn`t it refreshing to get a bit of "`lighter` news!
And who was it that said Mancunian comedy was strictly a virtue of City fans?
Date:Wednesday July 2 2008
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