The tattooed giant sounding the drumbeat of Leicester victory

first_imgCome wind, rain or snow, he can be found at the back of the stand beating his large drum.As he spoke to AFP outside the King Power Stadium, motorists honked their horns in recognition at the club’s official drummer, who is something of a gentle giant despite his fearsome appearance.Away fans unfamiliar with Jobber initially took him to be a hooligan, but the superfan stressed he was anything but.The Foxes need just one more win to take the Premier League — an improbable coup for the club that started the season as bookmakers’ 5,000-1 outsiders and one of the favourites for relegation.The meteoric rise of the club has won national and international attention.For Jobber, it is a fairy tale, having had a season ticket for 32 of his 36 years.Away from the stadium, Jobber is a mentor for troubled young people, helping them with their studies and taking them on trips to the countryside to see goats and cows.But he never misses a home game and says he has missed around six away games in 25 years.His loyalty is reflected in his 150 tattoos, which cover his arms and much of his upper body — including one of fictional nanny Mary Poppins wearing a Leicester supporters’ scarf.– ‘Crazy’ –Jobber is still getting to grips with the remarkable turnaround of the club.“How do I feel? I don’t know,” he told AFP. “I could never prepare myself, there was no plan for me to feel like this.“The minute I find what it is I’m going to ring the dictionary up and get that word put in the dictionary.”To be a Leicester supporter is to know suffering, having endured relegation to the third tier of English football less than 10 years ago and only narrowly avoiding relegation from the Premier League last season.Jobber’s brightest memory before this season was a last-minute victory over Tottenham Hotspur in the third round of the FA Cup in 2006.“Never in my life would I have even expected to be anywhere near the top 10 of the Premier League, let alone to be guaranteed a finish in the top two,” he said.“Where has it all come from? I think it’s the unity of this team, and the passion and the pride, you can’t buy that,” he added.Jobber’s passion for Leicester began when he was a boy, when he was a devout attendee of the old stadium Filbert Street.“I can’t remember much of the game, of the players at the time but I remember how it made me feel,” he said of his first match.“I remember feeling part of something and it became part of my life”.In 2003, a club official called to ask if he would be interested in playing the bass drum. His initial reluctance gave way and he tried it out. It was a revelation.“I came down and hit the drum and I was like ‘Wow!’. Next thing there were 35,000 sets of eyes on me. I’ve done it ever since.”0Shares0000(Visited 5 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Shaven-headed Lee Jobber’s back is covered with a large inked crest of Leicester City and his ample stomach bears the words “wide load”/PHOTO-AgenciesLEICESTER, April 28- A large, topless, heavily tattooed figure pounding a drum has become iconic at Leicester football matches as the underdog club closes in on the Premier League title.Shaven-headed Lee Jobber’s back is covered with a large inked crest of Leicester City and his ample stomach bears the words “wide load”.last_img read more

Wenger laments ‘very bad week’ for Arsenal

first_imgArsenal manager Arsene Wenger was left to reflect on a “very bad week” after his side twice threw away games from a winning position.The Gunners missed their chance to secure early qualification for the Champions League last-16 when they squandered a commanding three-goal lead to draw 3-3 with a plucky Anderlecht at the Emirates Stadium in midweek.And Swansea City completed a nightmare five days for the north London outfit as they rallied back from a goal down to win 2-1 at the Liberty Stadium, a result which lifts the Jacks one point above Arsenal in the Premier League table.After a tightly-contested opening-half, Alexis Sanchez put the visitors in front before a sublime Gylfi Sigurdsson free-kick and a late winner from substitute Bafetimbi Gomis handed Swansea a deserved three pointsAnd Wenger admits Wednesday’s disappointment against Anderlecht may have haunted his players in the crucial closing stages in Wales.“It has been a very bad week,” said the Frenchman.“We lost points against Anderlecht which were basically in the bag and today the same happened.“We were in control of this game at 1-0 and it’s very difficult to explain how we took the foot off the pedal, which allowed Swansea to get back into the game.“We are guilty of that and it’s frustrating.“But the players are winners, they want to win, and hopefully – thinking back on the game – they will realise what happened today.“I don’t question the mentality of my players, maybe it’s more of a confidence issue and maybe the result on Tuesday played a part in the final minutes here…I don’t know.”last_img read more

Roberto Firmino hands Liverpool major scare ahead of Bayern clash

first_img 4 It seems increasingly likely that Fabinho will partner Joel Matip in defence for the first leg of the Bayern tie.In better news, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was pictured in training at Melwood on Monday.Chamberlain is yet to return to full training though and only took part in the warm-up.The England international is continuing his rehabilitation from a serious knee injury suffered last April. Roberto Firmino is a major doubt for Liverpool Dejan Lovren is also likely to miss the Bayern clash Klopp said: “I don’t know 100 per cent. It’s Monday and we play on Tuesday so most of that should be clear.“Gini [Wijnaldum] trained and looked really well. [Xherdan] Shaqiri did a lot, so it will be close, we have to see.“Dejan [Lovren], I actually have to wait minute by minute if there is a chance or not.“But that’s pretty much all, I would say.” 4 4center_img Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain took part in the warm-up on Monday 4 The England midfielder has been out since last April Roberto Firmino is a serious doubt for Liverpool’s Champions League clash against Bayern Munich on Tuesday night at Anfield, owing to a virus.The Brazilian missed training on Monday, and looks set to join a number of key players on the sidelines for the first leg of the last-16 showdown. Jurgen Klopp is already facing a crisis at centre-back, with star man Virgil van Dijk suspended and Joe Gomez missing through injury.Dejan Lovren was also absent from training on Monday and looks unlikely to pass a late fitness test on a hamstring problem.And now, the Liverpool Echo reports that Firmino could add to his manager’s woes after picking up a virus before the Bundesliga giants come to town.He becomes the fourth Liverpool player to fall ill since the start of the month, following a warm-weather trip to Dubai in January.last_img read more