Newcastle United have joined Queens Park Rangers in deciding to cancel their Christmas party this festive season.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew called off the Toon's event 'out of respect for the fans' while the players at struggling QPR took the decision to cancel their shindig due to their poor form in the Premier League.
However, history shows that finding ANY excuse to dump the annual booze-up is probably a good idea.
West Ham — 2012
England striker Andy Carroll was interviewed by police in Ireland earlier this month after a photographer was allegedly assaulted during the Hammers party. The incident happened at 2:30am outside a nightclub in central Dublin although Carroll has denied any wrongdoing.
Tottenham — 2009
The party that is said to have ultimately ended Robbie Keane's career at White Hart Lane. Keane told then manager Harry Redknapp that the players were going to spend their day off travelling to Ireland to play golf. However, pictures in the papers then emerged of the players enjoying a few drinks, and they went on to lose at home to Wolves a few days later. Within two months Keane was shipped out on loan to Celtic
Manchester United — 2007
A now infamous party where 100 women were reported to have been 'hand-picked' and bussed in from around the country to attend. Wives and girlfriends were banned and Jonny Evans was arrested on suspicion of rape before all charges were dropped. Sir Alex Ferguson banned all Christmas parties as a result of the controversy
Manchester City — 2004
Joey Barton's rap sheet is not exactly small. One of his more despicable actions came at a Christmas bash for Manchester City players in 2004 when he stubbed a lit cigar into the eye of young team-mate Jamie Tandy. It is believed Barton had been putting cigar holes in other players' jackets and when Tandy dared to return the favour, he got his comeuppance. Barton was fined six weeks' wages by City.
Ex-Bolton player Stig Tofting burnt his bridges in pretty spectacular style at the Danish club's 2004 Christmas lunch. Tofting got so drunk that he took swings at no fewer than four of his team-mates. After a club investigation he was swiftly sacked.
Celtic parties — 2001 and 2002
Celtic manager Neil Lennon may have to let his players have a few drinks this festive season or he risks being accused of being a hypocrite. At Celtic's 2001 party, Lennon got so drunk that he smashed his head on a kerb. A year later the squad headed to Newcastle and Lennon, along with three others, ended up in police custody. Lennon was released early but Dutch winger Bobby Petta, the Swedish star Johan Mjallby and Belgian international Joos Valgaeren all had to spend the night in the slammer.
West Ham — 2001
Hammers defender Hayden Foxe found himself £2,000 out of pocket after the West Ham Christmas party in 2001 when he was fined for urinating in the VIP area of the Sugar Reef club in London, while another unnamed player was alleged to have vomited all over the venue. Then manager Glenn Roeder had actually alerted the police about the party in the hope they would keep things in line — but boys will be boys.
Leeds United — 2001
Robbie Fowler was arrested after the Leeds Christmas party in 2001 after some handbags led to a photographer's camera being smashed. Fowler was later cleared although the players did dress as soldiers and drank for a solid 10 hours.
Liverpool — 1998
The News of the World reported that Jamie Carragher went particularly wild at Liverpool's Christmas party back in 1998. When a gaggle of strippers started improvising with a can of whipped cream, Carragher was on hand to 'enjoy the dessert,' all while dressed as the hunchback of Notre Dame. Paul Ince was the DJ at the party and was said to be 'concerned' at the development, while a young Michael Owen stood in the corner out of harm's way as the party turned into a 'drink-fuelled orgy.'
Barnsley — 1997
Barnsley's German goalkeeper Lars Leese revealed in his book with Ronnie Reng: "The Keeper of Dreams; One Man's Controversial Story of Life in the English Premiership" that at the club's Christmas party one striker dressed up as Adolf Hitler - with a goalkeeper as Eva Braun - and greeted Leese with a crisp 'Heil Hitler'. Leese tried to explain that this was an arrestable offence back in Germany, only to be ignored.