When Mahrez met Rooney
Leicester City could win the English Premier League title tonight, which midfielder Riyad Mahrez has never achieved before.
They face Manchester United at Old Trafford, where Wayne Rooney is starting to look like a decent, midfielder, which he has never achieved before. They are both trying to make history. Imagine what might happen if they approached each other for advice…
Rooney: Congratulations, Riyad, you've finally joined an exclusive club.
Mahrez: I'm not joining Manchester United. I'm ambitious.
Rooney: Did Real Madrid come in with a better offer?
Mahrez: No, Leicester City did. They offered me a big incentive to stay.
Rooney: I know. You're guaranteed to play Champions League football.
Mahrez: No, I'm guaranteed not to play under Louis van Gaal.
Rooney: Fair enough. But I was talking about our exclusive club, the winners of the PFA Players' Player of the Year award.
Mahrez: You've won it as well? I had no idea. I haven't checked the winners before I was born.
Rooney: Oi! I only won the award in 2010.
Mahrez: Wow, that's amazing. Aren't you, like, 50 or something?
Rooney: Very funny. I came here to talk to you about something. I need advice.Mahrez: That's so strange. I need advice from you. It's a personal matter.
Rooney: Are you losing your hair, too?... OK, there's this place in Harley Street. It's called Hair Today, Back Tomorrow. If I give them a call, I'm sure I can …
Mahrez: No, no, it's not that. It's tonight's game at Old Trafford.Rooney: I know, I know, it's the Theatre of Dreams, the most intimidating place to come on Earth… Why are you laughing?
Mahrez: No, I was just, er, clearing my throat. But Leicester City could win our first ever title at Old Trafford tonight. It's like a man on the street suddenly winning an Oscar for a freak performance.
Rooney: They're giving Jamie Vardy an Oscar for his dive?
Mahrez: No. It was a bad dive though. I blame our manager. He's been giving us inspirational movies to watch, films like Rocky, Any Given Sunday and Bull Durham. With hindsight, he shouldn't have given Vardy a DVD of Billy Elliot.
Rooney: Yeah, there is a lot of jumping and diving in Billy Elliot.
Mahrez: On the plus side, Jamie is now taking ballet lessons.
Rooney: That's all we need in the England camp. A striker who pirouettes and falls over whenever he's near the penalty box.
Mahrez: Yeah, you guys did that already at the World Cup.
Rooney: Why did you want to see me again?
Mahrez: Oh yeah. What is it like to win a title at Old Trafford? How do you handle the pressure, the global spotlight, knowing that every football camera in the world is beaming down on you?
Rooney: The first thing you do is make sure you've covered all your bald spots.
Mahrez: I'm serious.Rooney: So am I. The second thing is to focus on winning. Think about something, anything, that makes you feel strong, confident and unbeatable.
Mahrez: Manchester United's back four?
Rooney: There's no need for the sarcasm. I'm only here because I need your advice as well.
Mahrez: Come on, I'm listening. What do you want?
Rooney: I wanna be like you.
Mahrez: Have you been watching The Jungle Book?
Rooney: No, I want to be like you on the football field.
Mahrez: Play for a title-challenging team?
Rooney: No for heaven's sake, I want to play in midfield … Why are you giggling? … I mean it. From now on, I'm going to be like Paul Scholes.
Mahrez: A 41-year-old guy who used to be a recluse and now can't stop talking on TV?
Rooney: No, the old Paul Scholes, a ball-playing midfielder, pulling the strings. I've done it a few times recently and the boss thinks I've got a future in that role.
Mahrez: The same boss who thought that Angel di Maria didn't have a future?
Rooney: You saying I can't make it midfield?
Mahrez: I just think there are other football roles that suit you better.
Rooney: Like what?
Mahrez: TV pundit?
Rooney: Right, I'm outta here. Good luck winning the title tonight at a place with loud, passionate supporters who sing from first minute 'til last.
Mahrez: No, we're playing at the King Power Stadium next week.