Charlton fans returning in the early hours of the morning from celebrating England's victory in the Ashes claim to have seen a strange mirage over The Valley.
Darren from Charlton said, 'We had had a few drinks and we decided to walk back via the ground. One of us thought he saw an Arab sheikh hovering over the ground with a bag of money while others thought it was someone in Swiss yodelling costume. I thought it was a trio made up of a butcher, a greengrocer and a fish and chip shop proprietor.'
All those there were agreed that Peter Varney and Alan Curbishley were sitting together high up in the empty stands.
A psychiatrist comments, 'This is not an unknown form of delusion when a team has gone down from the Premiership to League 1 and its onset may occur after the consumption of alcohol. Collective delusions of this kind arise when fans have been subjected to a long summer of rumours about a possible takeover of their club.'
'The delusion clears up rapidly when a takeover is announced or it is stated that it will not take place. The symptoms may be alleviated in the meantime if the signing of a striker or centre back is announced. Fans may find that tension is relieved by constructing models of Iain Dowie or Alan Pardew and sticking pins in them.' (Instructions on how to construct a model of Alan Pardew for this purpose can be found on Southampton fans' sites).
There may, however, be a simpler explanation of what happened. It has been reported that Inspector Sands was using his long furlough to project a multi media light show over The Valley from his nearby home, but the image of himself became distorted.
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