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FA Relegate Newly Promoted Stoke "for a laugh"

Billy Ray - Chief Sports Writer

In another bizarre turn of events at Soho Square, the FA have sensationally relegated Stoke City back to the Championship before the season has even started, "for a laugh". The decision was upheld by Brian Barwick after he called a press conference to announce had watched Stoke's end of season DVD for their 07/08 promotion campaign and was acting immediately. "It was a relatively easy decision to make, we are not in the business of wasting time here at the FA and have decided to pre-relegate Stoke City back to the Championship because quite frankly we do not want them anywhere near the Premier League. I watched their End of Year 07/08 review and said to some of the other members of the committee, "This lot are going straight back down, its not going to hurt anyone, shall we just do it now for a laugh?"

The panel of experts voted unanimously in Barwick's favour and the decision was swiftly made. "I am just disappointed we couldn't sort it for the fans," dejected Stoke chairman Peter Coates told BBC Radio Mingeford. "I don't think all clubs have been treated equally. I mean look at Derby, they're absolute shite and they weren't handed this disgusting punishment," "I can take anything as long as everybody is being treated on the same basis and I don't think that is the case. If the FA do decide to press ahead with this I might just fold the club and build houses on the land around the Britannia"

Derby manager Paul Jewell was also furious with the decision and particularly scathing in his criticism of the FA and of Stoke "They tried to do the same thing to us last year. Let's not mince words; they're a bunch of comedians. As for Coates's comments regarding Derby, things said in the heat of the moment can be taken with a pinch of salt, but I saw Stoke play in the cup last year, and they gave me a migraine, I'm not surprised he's angry all the time." Despite the situation that some have described as 'hopeless', one supporter tried to burst the gloomy bubble by approaching Barwick as he left FA headquarters. "Does this mean we get the parachute payment now? We gunna put a bid in for Noel Whelan and show you tossers you made a mistake." Barwick laughed in the man's face, got into his limo and sped off.

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