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 By Chris Wright

The 2015 Toe Poke Awards

It's that time of year again when we here at Toe Poke look back at the last 12 months to take stock of the various highs and lows that have befallen the football world.

Let's start by getting the most terrifying entry out of the way first.

Partick Thistle mascot
Partick Thistle's mascot could surely frighten small children.

Mascot of the year

There can be only one winner here, as we fear he will haunt our waking nightmares for the rest of eternity if we don't give him the nod.

Re-introducing Partick Thistle's cuddly, loveable new mascot: Kingsley the demon fried egg....

Worst game of the year

Barnsley's 1-0 home defeat against Fleetwood in October was obviously so dull that it made one poor fan fall asleep on the toilet at Oakwell.

For seven hours.

Inspiring anthem of the year

2015 will doubtless forever be remembered as the year Reading released their inspirational new club song, written as a "gift for the club" by their 73-year-old chairwoman.

It's stirring stuff.

Musical milestone of the year

From the most rousing musical output of the year to perhaps the oddest ...

In October Zlatan Ibrahimovic received a gold record, an honour to commemorate the fact that his spoken-word version of the Swedish national anthem was streamed for the 3,000,000th time.

Signing of the year

Did our eyes deceive us? Did Limerick managed to get their hands on Neymar in August, with the Barcelona forward opting to ditch life at the Camp Nou in favour of joining the League of Ireland side's Under-17 team? 

Of course, the incredulity didn't last as it quickly emerged that the player holding the Limerick scarf aloft in the photo was not Neymar (shocking, we know!) but rather Barry Cotter, a 16-year-old striker who just so happened to be the spitting image of his Brazilian counterpart.

Fashion accessory of the year

We must take this opportunity to doff our cap to Mr. Dani Alves who, despite clearly being a fully grown adult, felt the need to pay good money for a pair of glittery golden trainers with a teddy bear's head sewn onto the tongues.

A ver si saben de quienes son ??? Who are these shoes from???

A photo posted by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on


Um vídeo publicado por DanialvesD2 My Twitter (@danid2ois) em

Why? Because fashion.

Dive of the year

Norrkoping captain Andrea Johanssen's play-acting against AIK was so spectacularly woeful that he was forced to publicly apologise for it.

Set-piece of the season

Speaking of spectacularly woeful, it's high time we revisit this magnificent free kick from the Tunisian Cup in February.

Goal of the season

By which, of course, we mean "Hilarious Own-Goal of the Season."

Thurrock FC, take a collective, wind-assisted bow.

Copycat skills of the season

It's a brave man who attempts to one-up Lionel Messi, but sure enough Arsenal left-back Nacho Monreal showed off some impressive freestyle chops by bettering the Barcelona star's orange juggling skills with a fridge-based trick shot.

Short cut of the season

Samuel Eto'o may be many things, but inefficient he most certainly is not.

The veteran Cameroon striker demonstrated his commendable commitment to recycling by simply copy-and-pasting his heartfelt farewell letter to Everton's "warm, passionate and affectionate" fans in order to say goodbye to Sampdoria's "warm, passionate and affectionate" supporters just six months later.

Cutting quip of the season

This award goes to ex-Twente manager Co Adriaanse, who went up ten-fold in Toe Poke's estimation when he chastised an out-of-form Memphis Depay for reporting for international duty while dressed as a "Peruvian pan flute player."

Boom. Nailed it.

Ronaldo couldn't wait to get out of his tux.

Vanity project of the year

Coming as a shock to precisely nobody, Cristiano Ronaldo spent more time with his shirt off than he did playing football in his new behind-the-scenes documentary...

In such a hectic world, it's refreshing to know that some things never change.

Kit of the year

No stripes, hoops, solids or even zigzags. Nope. When Spanish Segunda B side CD Guijuelo decided to design themselves a new strip they went with a jersey decorated entirely with ham.

Mmmm. Looks good enough to eat.

Happy New Year from all at The Toe Poke!


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