Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Player out of Focus - George Horan

There are so many new celebrities around Chester FC these days - Neil Young, The Tall Peacock, Jiff Bricks, Pet Husky, Elton Welsby, The Pilsbury Dough Beard, Famous Colin Murray, Big Lupus - that it can be easy to forget the team's onfield leader, George Horan.
Club captain and the only follower of the Jestrian in the first team squad, Horan has skippered his team to two titles in a row, and he claims his influence is even greater than meets the eye.

"I'm actually running the whole operation," drawls Horan.  "Neil Young is just a figurehead, it's me pulling the strings."

"It's simple really," he continues.  "I give Neil the starting line up on a Friday night, and I write his team talk for him.  The post-match interview is a little more tricky to prepare for, so I just get him to toddle out and moan about the ref for an hour - seems to do the job."

"I've only got him in as a human shield, for when I have to make the tough calls.  I felt bad on him, because it was my decision to bin off Brad Barnes, and Neil's taken some right stick for that one."

However, Horan has admitted that Young "went rogue" when he brought on Liam Brownhill for Antoni Sarcevic against Northwich.

"I think he got over-excited," he reminisces.  "I never give him the authority to make subs, because that's precisely the kind of nonsense change he likes to make.  He's no idea what he's doing, he just enjoys seeing the coloured numbers go up.  Fortunately, this one came off.  We might not be so lucky next time."

Horan is perhaps best known for his work clambering all over opposition forwards.

"It's all about ensuring the striker has no mobility whatsoever," says the Blues skipper, who can often be spotted mid-game sneakily attaching a set of portable rungs to the back of a striker, in order to gain himself some extra leverage. 

Indeed, Horan was once sent off whilst playing for Rhyl, after he attempted to shepherd Connah's Quay Nomads striker Tommy Mutton into a straitjacket.

"I'd have gotten away with it too, if it wasn't for that pesky linesman," he mutters.

Undoubtedly a popular figure at the club, Horan has earnt himself a chant which sees fans hypothesise about a dream situation in which Horan is cloned and selected in all eleven positions of Chester's first XI. This caused some brief controversy on Monday, as striker Chris Simm - mistaking the song for Cleggy's announcement of the starting eleven - stormed out in protest at the news that Horan was to partner himself in attack.

"They're too similar to play up front together!" Simm was heard to scream.

Despite being a centre back, the captain chips in with a good number of goals, most of which happen in backwater Northern towns.

"I like to save my goals for the hardened travellers," Horan explains.  "Sack scoring at the Exacta, there's scarcely anyone paying attention there anyway."

George Horan is available for a limited time only.

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