Strach winds down with a bit of bully

The Mirror, 17/08/2005, p25

By SHAUN MILNE

CELTIC boss Gordon Strachan took a break from football – to get in a bit of bully.
And it proved to be a “super, smashing, great” night out for the under-pressure Hoops gaffer, who has been under intense pressure since his side crashed out of Europe.
He darted through to Edinburgh for some light relief to see Bullseye host Jim Bowen’s one-man comedy show, accompanied by three close pals.
And he found himself mobbed by dozens of autograph hunters at You Can’t Beat a Bit of Bully in Jongleurs Comedy Club in the city’s Greenside Place. Bowen was making his Festival debut at the packed-out club near Calton Hill.
Strachan – who first met Bowen at a function a decade ago – wanted to see him live.
And he even refused to cash in on his VIP status by forking out full price for four tickets to the 7pm show, which has had rave reviews.
Last night Bowen told the Mirror: “Gordon said he wanted me to play this weekend but I’m afraid I had to tell him I’m doing a show.
“I was chuffed Gordon was in but sorry not to get a contract from him.”
The comedy gig brought some badly-needed relief for the Celtic coach, who has had a torrid time since taking over from Martin O’Neill in the Parkhead hotseat.
His side crashed out of the Champions League at the hands of Slovakian minnows Artmedia Bratislava.
And they trail league leaders Hearts by two points ahead of this weekend’s Old Firm clash.
Asked if he would be bringing his squad to the show for a pre-derby match lift, Strachan joked to staff: “No chance – you can’t let that lot out at night.”
The show charts the story of former headteacher Bowen and his 15 years at Bullseye, which was a TV hit during the 1980s.
Recent appearances with Peter Kaye in the BBC 2 sitcom Phoenix Nights and a Comic Relief video for Amarillo have made Bowen hot property again.
Bowen’s career has not all been plain sailing and he was once sacked from a radio show for making a racist remark on air.
And he recently sparked controversy hosting a wacky TV show about dwarf curling.

***



Categories: Daily Mirror articles

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