Father Christmas insists joining Christianity was always his preferred choice.
In a surprise move, rumoured to be worth in excess of 4.2 million indulgences, Father Christmas has been bought by the Christians. Manager Pope Benedict the 16th said in a press statement that there was a 'natural fit' between the jolly giver of gifts and the Christian team.
Santa, also known as Saint Nick, is expected to head up the Catholic A-team, casting doubts over the career of long-term striker Jesus Christ. "Christ is frankly looking a bit tired" commented John, Matthew, Mark and Luke, who have been pundits at religious knock-out tournaments since the championship began. "The Christians have clearly been suffering at the hands of several newer and more dynamic religions, including Islam, Shinto Buddhism and Homebase. It was about time they smartened up the squad and got some new transsubstantiated blood in."
Santa is the latest in a long line of Judeo-Christian sporting figures. Previous heroes include Moses - famous for the water-parting trick - and before him, Boat-builder Noah. But this will be the first time that the team have opened with a genuinely secular player.
Father Christmas's traditional style of dropping down the chimney and leaving presents around the pitch should ensure the team get through the first round, but there are question-marks over the tubby man's long-term fitness. But Santa himself is very excited about the future: "The possibility of reindeer on the subs bench suggests that a whole new era of inter-species religiosity might not be far away, ho ho ho" he chortled.