The Conservative Party's plans for their manifesto launch were thrown into disarray yesterday with the Labour Party’s pledge for England to win the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Speaking to Today presenter John Humphrys, Ed Miliband, architect of the party’s manifesto, confirmed their “firm intention to win the World Cup for the first time since 1966.” Under intense cross examination, Miliband said the pledge had been fully costed and Alistair Darling had approved the promise provided that Scotland win the trophy in 2014. He also revealed Labour’s intention of phasing in the 2012 European Championships for Wales at the personal request of Welsh assembly first minister Carwyn Jones.”
The Labour promise has gone down well with football fans. Devout England supporter Darren Bennett, 27, said “I was going to vote Liberal Democrat as I’ve been impressed by Vince Cable’s sound economic stance and his love of opera, but now that Labour are going to give us the World Cup, it’s a no brainer.”
Once Tory advisors had finally managed to explain to David Cameron that the world cup in question was nothing to do with the polo world championships, the Tory leader acknowledged that their manifesto promise to “restore national pride by winning the Eurovision Song Contest” now looked a little weak when compared with the football glory promised by the Socialists.
“We must admit that the Labour Party has come up with a real vote winner here and we are really struggling.” said one insider speaking of the turmoil at Central Office, “Apart from the obvious difficulty of trying to come with something of mass appeal to voters, we now have the Ulster Unionists pushing for the Northern Ireland football team to win something; but there is such a thing as stretching credulity.”
Meanwhile, after promising that England would beat Brazil in the semi-finals by “at least 5 clear goals”, Ed Miliband reminded voters that the Labour Party had a proven track record for delivering sporting glory. “After all” he told Radio 4 listeners, “England has never won the World Cup under a Tory Government.”