Balotelli demands kiss from the Queen to keep England alive

Mario Balotelli, The Queen

World Cup whispers: Italian striker's Twitter request, as Big Phil lookalike fools reporter

LAST UPDATED AT 12:00 ON Fri 20 Jun 2014
A KISS FROM THE QUEEN FOR BALOTELLI

Italian striker Mario Balotelli obviously understands the predicament England are in at the World Cup after the Three Lions' defeat to Uruguay last night. Roy Hodgson's men are now dependent on Italy winning their last two games to stand any chance of getting through the group stages. With so much riding on the Italians Balotelli is already demanding favours, and took to Twitter to demand a kiss from the Queen, "on the cheek", in return for beating Costa Rica.

ANYONE BUT ENGLAND

It took Andy Murray years to win over the English public after his quip about supporting anyone but England at the World Cup, but it may take even longer for Glaswegian Formula 1 engineer Mark McConville, who was seen waving a Scottish Saltire and celebrating with Uruguay supporters after Luis Suarez's winner in Sao Paulo. He was also at the Italy game, reports the Daily Telegraph. But he's not all bad - he travelled to Brazil with second-hand football kits for disadvantaged children.

WORLD CUP POWER PROBLEMS FOR DR CONGO

Football fans in the Democratic Republic of Congo have been told to turn off the lights if they want to keep watching the World Cup. The nation's "creaking power grid" has been put under immense pressure since the tournament began, Reuters explains, and pre-match build-up from the Congolese state broadcaster has been replaced with public service announcements on how to avoid power cuts during the games. "The technical constraints of our energy system means that supply cannot meet demand", said state power firm SNEL.

JAPAN AND GREECE WON'T BE MISSED

Japan versus Greece failed to provide England fans with the distraction they were hoping for following Luis Suarez's smash and grab in Sao Paulo. The Group C rivals fought-out a goalless draw at the Estadio Dunas which leaves both sides on the brink of elimination – though on last night's showing neither will be missed in the last 16. The dismissal of Greece’s captain Kostas Katsouranis threatened to liven-things-up, but Japan failed to make their extra man count, and despite a frantic finish Greece managed to hold-out for a deserved point.

GERVINHO STUNS COLOMBIA... AND ARSENAL

Whatever happened to Arsenal winger Gervinho? The hapless wideman, who became a laughing stock during an ill-fated stint at the Emirates, has been reborn in Serie A where he now plays for Roma. He showed off his newfound talents with a stunning solo goal for Ivory Coast during the Elephants's defeat to Colombia. It will go down as one of the strikes of the tournament, and left Arsenal fans open-mouthed with astonishment.

THERE'S ONLY ONE PHIL SCOLARI

It's not just Spain and England who look like mugs after the first week of the World Cup. Spare a thought for well-known Brazilian journalist Mario Sergio Conti, who couldn't believe his luck when he found himself on a plane with Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari. Or so he thought. He conducted an interview with Big Phil which was published on some of Brazil's most popular news websites. Only problem was that he had been talking to Vladimir Palomo, a Scolari look-alike, who gave the interview as a joke.

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Obviously the Queen said no thanks.

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