by Kevin Henning

The village hall is a sell-out and it was all going so well. That was until Wayne Bridge called in sick and Andy Carroll fluffed his lines…

Mario Balotelli as The Virgin Mary
Balotelli was the obvious choice here because no-one ever seems to question why he does the things he does. Catholics and kids don’t ever seem to be baffled when confronted with the revelation that despite being Joseph’s partner, Mary was pregnant with God’s baby.
Similarly, Mad Mario sets fire to his house during an indoor fireworks display in his bathroom and no-one bats an eyelid. “Well that’s Mario!” seems to be the common reaction from City fans.

Wayne Rooney as Jesus Christ
Both were talked about as being the saviour of a people but never quite justified the hype. A few decent moments such as turning water into wine, feeding the five thousand and that volley against Newcastle will never be forgotten but on the big stage, both were found wanting. I’m thinking of the Champions League final at Wembley and the crucifixion at Gethsemane where both were expected to pull off a miracle but disappointed the masses.
In another striking resemblance to JC, Wayne Rooney went into hiding for 40 days and 40 nights during the summer of 2010.

Wayne Bridge as Joseph the Carpenter
Went to work every day to carry out mundane tasks with no chance of praise or glory at the end of the week. Wayne knows all about maintaining his dignity following revelations that his missus has more than likely been playing away right under his nose. I wonder whether Joseph, when faced with the Father of his partner’s child at the gates of Heaven, shunned the hand of God in a blatant act of disrespect?

Sheik Mansour, Roman Abramovich and Venkatesh Venky as The Three Wisemen
Who else but the three club owners from the East who followed the Premier League star with the intention of lavishing gifts. Rather than Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh, these three brought Silva, Frank Lampard and er….Steve Kean.

He’d never tire of the sound of his own voice, reminding us all at every opportunity about “That magical night in Bethlehem.


Owen Coyle, David Moyes and Alex McCleish and The Shepherds
These three Glaswegians are often found sat around discussing the best way to lead their flocks through troubled times. The shepherds travelled thousands of miles to witness the big event but no-one is really sure why they bothered with the journey and at the end of the day it all seems a little pointless. In the absence of any gold Moyes tries to loan some off the innkeeper.

Alex Ferguson as King Herod
Reacted with furious anger when informed that the Son of God was to be announced as the New King of a different people and never got over it. A ruthless tyrant who was never satisfied unless he got his own way, he seems the perfect candidate to play Herod.

Harry Redknapp as the Roman Emperor Augustus
Redknapp’s list of potential transfer targets has as many names on it as the great census of Roman Emperor Augustus. He’s never too shy to call the members of the press from all corners of the nation to come and visit him at the Spurs Lodge in Chigwell. The gates at Spurs’ training ground on transfer deadline day can often be chaotic with as many people milling around as there were on the night of Christ’s birth.

Clive Tyldesley as the Angel Gabriel / Narrator
The Angel Gabriel announced to anyone who’d listen that the birth of the special one was imminent. Tyldesley warned us all to “Remember the name – Wayne Rooney”.
Could also double up as the narrator of the play as he’d never tire of the sound of his own voice, reminding us all at every opportunity about “That magical night in Bethlehem.

Andy Carroll as Not-so-Little Donkey
A vital role in the Nativity play, the role of the donkey is similar to that of a Liverpool centre forward. Like any primary school teacher, Kenny Dalglish plumped for a severely unfit youth who stumbles around the stage without any actual idea where he is but is rarely exposed to the stage lights in an attempt to spare his blushes.

Premier League Chairmen as the Inn Keepers
Despite being pleaded, begged and even bribed by Celtic and Rangers, the collective Chairmen of the Premier League have constantly put up the ‘No Vacancies’ sign at the window and insisted there is “No room at the Inn.”