From: stigop@lise.unit-no (Stig Oppedal)
Subject: Great Actors XI (give these men a Diego!) 
Date: Sat 20 Nov, 1993

Welcome to the first Diego awards, presented to those footballers who have 
shown true Hollywood quality either on or off the pitch. The awards are, of 
course, named after the player who excelled in the thespian arts, Diego 
Maradona. Diego originally specialized in horror flicks, starring in such 
classics as "I Was A Teenage Balls-Kicker" (1982), "The Hand of God" (1986), 
and "The Return of The Hand of God" (1990), before portraying down and out 
losers in melodramas such as "We Wuz Robbed" (1990) and "The Nose of God" 
(1991). A round of applause for Diego, everyone! 

The jury has selected the following players to compromise The Great Actors 
XI, and each will receive the coveted Diego statue - a gold replica of The 

PETER SCHMEICHEL (Denmark): for his weekly monologue "Iím As Mad As Hell, 
And Iím Not Gonna Take It Anymore", which is based on the Howard Beale 
character from the movie Network. Even though he blasts every defender in 
sight any time a goal is conceded, Peter gains extra credit for reserving 
his best performances for his own screw-ups, when he _really_ screams at his 

HENNING BERG (Norway): for his cult classic "Ref, He Took A Dive". A widely 
ignored performance from a little known actor, it remains the standard in 
the crime genre. After mercilessly hacking down a Polish striker, he pleads 
eloquently to avoid the yellow card. The Bambi eyes, the "olí explaininí 
hands" and the heartfelt plea convince even the strikerís mother that the 
Pole had taken a dive. Priceless!

GIUSEPPE BERGOMI (Italy): for his gallant heroics in "To The Rescue!" With 
Italy trailing 2-1 in a vital European qualifier in Norway, Giuseppe comes 
on as a substitute in injury time, in a last gasp attempt to revitalize the 
Azzurri. He immediately makes his mark on the game, getting sent off after 
_15_ seconds for kicking an injured opponent in the head. His phlegmatic 
facial expression as he runs off the field would have made Clint Eastwood 

THE UNKNOWN FOOTBALLER (England?): for his chameleon-like acting in "The 
Impersonation of Des Walker", a horror classic. This clever impersonator, 
second only to the legendary Leonard Zelig, perfectly mimicks the England 
defenderís off-field personality, though the critics were not as overwhelmed 
by his on-field impressions. As one scribe wrote: "His lack of pace and 
skills give him away as a fake. Where is the real Des Walker?" _That_ 
question remains unanswered to this day...

CARLOS VALDERAMA (Colombia): for his ghoulish performance in the 1990 horror 
blockbuster "The Return of The Living Dead". After a fatal collision with a 
German player in a World Cup clash, his corpse is stretchered off, only for 
some mad scientist to resurrect his decaying body. A chill goes down the 
spine of every viewer in the world as his ghastly body shambles towards the 
sideline... Captain of the Great Actors XI, he also moonlights for the 
International Sad Haircut XI. 

PAUL GASCOIGNE (England): the clown prince of football was no doubt inspired 
by Monty Pythonís "Wrestler who fights himself" sketch when he pulled off 
the performance of a lifetime in the tragi-comedy "Gascoigne vs. Gascoigne", 
still showing at a movie screen near you. Just when he seems to pick himself 
off the floor, WHAM! - Paul pulls off another suicide stunt that leaves the 
audience, and himself, in stitches. Who can forget the incredible "Hard Man 
Tackles Opponent" parody from 1991 that left him on the sidelines for 18 

THOMAS BROLIN (Sweden): for his cheeky press conference recital "My Brilliant 
Goal". After farcically missing the easiest goalscoring opportunities known 
to man in Swedenís Euroí92 game against Denmark, Thomas literally stumbles 
into the path of an errant ball which strikes his toe and zooms into the net. 
Afterwards he talks of how he calmly slotted the ball into the corner of the 
goal, showing considerable acting skill by doing this with a completely 
straight face. Watch out for him in any future remakes of classic 1940ís 
screwball comedies. 

ROMARIO (Brazil): for his portrayal of a spoiled brat up way past his bedtime 
in "I Hate You All". A classic example of typecasting, Romario executes the 
role perfectly: ranting and raving when he doesnít get his way, whining when 
the world gets a bit tough, etc. Donít miss the final scene, when the 
audience finds out if little Romario gets a spanking from Big Daddy Cruijff. 

PIERLUIGHI CASIRAGHI (Italy): in the Italy-Portugal World Cup bout, Pierluighi 
pulls off a stunning performance as a fatally wounded mercenary in the 
heart-wrenching epic "Tell Mamma I Loved Her". After a Portuguese defender 
slaps him lightly in the face, he collapses to the ground as though harshly 
struck by a sledgehammer. His brothers-in-arms try valiantly to revive him, 
but his pulse fades away. A vision of his brokenhearted mother gives Pierluighi 
back his will to live, which is further strengthened when the Portuguese 
thug is shown the red card. A three-handkerchief classic if ever there was 

Excuse me, I think I have a speck of dust in my eye... Sniff! 

JAN AAGE FJORTOFT (Norway): Norway affirms itís status as an up and coming 
soccer nation by claiming two places in the Great Actors XI. Jan Aage 
receives his Diego on the basis of many memorable sketches, most notably his 
weekly rendition of "Disappointed", where he gnashes his teeth, hits the 
ground, and screams out in frustration at missing yet _another_ golden 
scoring chance. His one-man farce "I Scored! I Scored! I Am The Greatest! I 
Am The Messiah!" is seen less and less these days. Jan Aageís acting in "The 
Pain! The Agony!", though not of the lofty standards of "Tell Mamma I Loved 
Her", deserves honorable mention. 

MARCO VAN BASTEN (The Netherlands): for his compelling work in "Portrait Of 
The Young Man As A Complete Dickhead", where he runs the entire emotional 
gamut: from graceless loser to graceless winner, from arrogant upstart to 
arrogant veteran, from selfish moaner to selfish whiner. Marco includes 
every nuance! 

Letís give a hearty cheer for these worthy winners!

The Special Diegos for Management and Ownership go this year to (drum roll, 

GRAEME SOUNESS (Liverpool): for his portrayal of a talentless manager in 
"The Sting", where he gets taken to the cleaners in the transfer market each 
and every time. Graemeís performance as a would be dictator in "Absolute 
Beginners", the story of Rangersí stumbling forays into Europe, also 
warrants mention. 

BERNARD TAPIE (Olympique Marseille): for his drama skills in "The 
Untouchables", as well as the comic ability evidenced by his version of the 
"I know nuuuth-ing" routine from "Fawlty Towers". 

That concludes the first Diego awards ceremony, and as your host I bid you 
all good night.

From: stigop@lise.unit-no (Stig Oppedal)
Subject: Re: Great Actors XI (give these men a "Diego"!)
Date: 23 Nov, 1993

Ariel Mazzarelli writes: 
>Well I immediately recognized the talent that this young man had in my 
>original one-line comment. Now that everybody else is jumping on the 
>bandwagon (and I might add Sergio to that, since we all know that no work 
>of irony written in English is worth a spit if Sergio gets it the first 
>time), I would like to give a special mention to Stigís coining of the 
>"Portrait of the Young Man as a Complete Dickhead"
>which I may liberally sprinkle throughout my posts (watch out Jesper!).  
>The best thing about it is that Mr. Joyce himself would have liked it. 
>On a somewhat related note, did yíall note Ronald Koemanís look when he got 
>a yellow card in the movie "Crime Pays" [WCQ: Netherlands vs. England]?  He 
>runs up to the ref all angry because a penalty kick was gonna be called,  
>but as soon as the ref changed his mind (by consulting the linesman) Koeman 
>calms down and just stands there holding his breath and waiting for the red 
>card.  When he sees itís a yellow he looks away from the ref ever so slightly 
>to hide his shock.  This is Diego material,  perhaps to be shared with the 

There probably should have been a Diego for the refs, but there were too 
many candidates! The refs, however, do have a decisive influence on who 
receives the Diegos. Would "Gascoigne vs. Gascoigne" have been the same if 
Roger Milford had calmed Gazza down with a yellow card at the beginning of 
the FA Cup Final? Would "The Hand of God" or "The Return of The Hand of God" 
ever been made if the referees had not been in the producerís seat? Methinks 

From: (Ariel Mazzarelli)
Subject: Re: Great Actors XI (give these men a "Diego"!)
Date: 24 Nov 1993 00:05:36 GMT
Jesper Lauridsen  wrote:
> (Sergio Adeff) writes:
>>I have already apologized to Stig but certainly will not to Jesper, who have
>>made uncalled-for intensive and extensive bigotted attacks to Argentina.
>When have I done that? As usual you haven't got the slightest idea of what
>you are talking about.

Jesper,  you don't understand,  in order to get a Diego you have to do this
sort of thing *on the futbol field*,  not over the net!

Some people will stop at nothing to get something for a trophy case.


PD: Note that in the spirit of good fellowship I did not use the words 
"EspaŮa" or "10 vs. 11".

From: (P.Hanmer)
Subject: Diego brings on funny turns!!!! (Re: Great Actors XI)
Date: Thu, 25 Nov 93 17:01:41 GMT

An Argentian in the Missisississippi writes...

>...Sometimes I overdo it, alright.  By the way, when
>Diego does display his tremendous skills in the soccer field, I
>certainly wee a lot and enjoy it immensely.

!!!!?????? the..?...[speechless]