**Former foreign secretary David Miliband has secured the backing of 37 Labour MPs (four more than he needed) to stand for the leadership of the Labour Party. Embarrassingly for him this is a few days after his younger brother Ed was the first candidate to cross the threshold.
David is lumbered with his vote in favour of the Iraq war (brother Ed wasn’t an MP at the time) and his subsequent defence of the then government’s indefensible programme of ‘rendition,’ in which terrorist suspects were shunted off on CIA flights to be tortured somewhere else. Labour members, who all get a vote in the leadership stakes, hate this.
So, bizarrely, Ed Miliband, about whom the voters in the UK know nothing, could be prime minister in a couple of years’ time if the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition falls apart.
New politics indeed.
**Davids Gold and Sullivan, the unlovely duo who run West Ham, have increased their stake in the club to 60 per cent by buying more shares from Icelandic firm CB Holdings.
They can’t be very happy about this as, ever since they bought their stake, they’ve been trying to bring in fat cats from the Gulf to share the pain.
Both Daves made their money out of the porn business but Gold seems to be a decent enough guy. Sullivan is probably the most disagreeable person to have entered football since Alan Sugar was chairman of Spurs. He made manager Gianfranco Zola’s life impossible and manager-in-waiting Avram Grant seems to be holding out in case he gets an offer from a human being.
Still, West Ham has always got CEO Karren Brady to smooth over the traces. Karren is famous for being a woman in business and, er, that’s it.
**Much talk on the ever-anguished Radio Five tonight about the distressing state of England’s midfield going into the World Cup without Gareth Barry, who may or may not be fit.
The team needs a holding midfield player, someone who can protect the back four by fouling opponents 30 yards out from goal. Barry was scheduled for this task even though it’s not the role he plays in club football.
It’s bizarre that in a country that still has its fair share of cloggers England don’t have an option B.
Don Fabio Capello should have included Everton’s young tyro Jack Rodwell in his World Cup squad. Rodwell can do all the marking and tackling, without fouling opponents and getting himself booked. And also go forward and score goals if push comes to shove.
We’re sure they’ll still win it but, just in case they don’t, you read it here first.