Very ugly ex-footballer in hilarious hostage hoax
Coventry academy director Steve Ogrizovic has laughed off claims that he had been arrested and held captive in Kazakhstan over Christmas.
According to a website called petitionsonline, the Sky Blue legend had embarked on a global fundraising trek around the world, for a charity called 'Over the Bar' which allegedly helps disadvantaged goalkeepers.
But after straying on to private military land, 'Oggy' was apparently arrested and thrown into prison accused of spying, prompting a 'Free Steve Ogrizovic Campaign' and a petition to Downing Street in a bid to secure his release.
However, the former Coventry and Liverpool keeper said he could not believe such an elaborate hoax had become public knowledge.
"I am told that only 57 people signed the petition to get me back so I don't think that would carry much weight with Tony Blair," he joked. "But seriously, it is a complete hoax and I haven't a clue where it has come from.
"The first I heard about it was when a journalist from the Guardian rang me and asked what I was doing answering the phone when I should have been locked away in a prison cell in Kazakhstan.
"The first thing I did was go to an atlas and have a look where it is!" he added in the Coventry Evening Telegraph.