Andy Reid in his Sunderland daysA newspaper story which could scarcely have revealed less information has been spread around the web and become something of an unlikely hit.
Paolo Di Canio’s appointment at Sunderland and subsequent focus on his political views have taken up plenty of column inches in the last few weeks.
Some people have felt that many of those column inches were unnecessary, but few could compare to an article which appeared in the Irish Daily Star.
The paper, sourcing views on Di Canio, tried to contact Andy Reid. So far so irrelevant – the former winger did once play for Sunderland, but left the club two years ago and is now back at Nottingham Forest via a spell at Blackpool.
But despite the club having nothing at all to say on the matter which has long since stopped directly affecting him, Reid’s views are still worthy of a report, via a quote from a ‘family member’.
“Irish star Andy Reid has no opinion on the Paolo Di Canio controversy,” is the story’s opening gambit.
“A family member told the Daily Star: ‘Andy has left Sunderland – he wouldn’t have a say on what’s going on.’”
What else does a news story like that need? Confirmation that the parents of a current Sunderland player, John O’Shea, could not be reached for comment.
It quickly started doing the rounds on the internet - "unpolluted by any news content" was the assessment of The Media Blog on Twitter, "an important news item", snarked another Twitter user Joe Donnelly. Still, any publicity is good publicity...
You can feast on the article in all its glory here.