WATCH: Howard Webb reveals how players used to ask for yellow cards

Christmas is around the corner, we’re all trying to negotiate our holidays, trying to get our shopping done, all the bits and pieces before the family come around; just ask the bloke in the Sainsbury’s advert.

Well, if you’re a footballer, getting these things together can be tough with the schedule of about 50 games in 21 days… we’re surprised the managers never moan about the calender ?.

Anyway, whether the players are pissed off because they can’t eat themselves under the table with mum’s roast turkey followed by nan’s mince pies, or if they just want the time off to get last minute presents – it seems like the festive period just isn’t quite the same for top professionals compared to us average Joes.

So, according to former referee, Howard-I-have-the-shiniest-head-around-Webb, the 45-year-old has made the shocking claim that players would ask for yellow cards around this time, in order to be suspended for games.

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We can’t quite believe it, I mean, yeah fair enough, not being around your family, and spending nights in shitty hotels whilst everyone else is getting tucked into copious amounts of booze and food must leave the players stinking of jealousy. But, still, we’re jealous of them for the 11 other months of the year.

Kickin’ back in the swankiest pads, playing the game we love to earn their bread; and a few of them act totally unprofessional by asking for yellow cards, and purposefully getting booked. As Howard says, ‘it’s just not quite cricket.’

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A couple of these players Howard Webb mentions, can’t be West Ham captain, Mark Noble, who brilliantly puts the circumstance into perspective…

“It is hard if you have got family and kids and you have to leave them on Christmas Day to go and train. But listen, we are a small minority of lucky players.

“You have to take the good with the bad. We have a good life and playing football over Christmas is not the worst thing in the world.

“You think about soldiers out in war zones who are not with their families. They are getting bullets fired at them whereas we are playing in the Premier League. You have got to put to put it in perspective really.”

Mark Noble

One of your better contributions to footy, Mark, shame it still doesn’t get you that England call-up!

Here are the boys who do deserve one… 

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