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GREAT MOMENTS IN THE LIFE OF PAUL GASCOIGNE
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(Not Including That Free Kick Against Arsenal Or That Equally Memorable Goal Against Scotland... But Definitely Including Those False Breasts)

GAZZA. Great footballer. But an even better laugh. Mr Gascoigne's best tales of ordinary madness...

1. One hour after playing for England, met 'showbiz pals' Danny Baker and Chris Evans in a Hampstead pub while still wearing his full kit... boots included.

2. When asked for his nationality before an operation, told the nurse he was Church Of England.

3. On a trip to London, jumped out of his car to demand "a go" on a workman's pneumatic drill. After getting the go-ahead, happily pounded the pavement to the amusement of shoppers.

4. On first meeting with Lazio's president to discuss his big-money move to the Italian club, was quick to tell the esteemed gentleman that he reminded him of Bud Abbot!

5. Organisers of Italia 90 TV coverage had the splendid idea of augmenting team line-up with film of each player mouthing his own name. Gascoigne's genius led him to subvert the process by, instead, mouthing 'F***ing W***ker'. The BBC had to use it all the way through the tournament.

6. Booked a series of sun-bed sessions for then-Newcastle team-mate Tony Cunningham. Who, of course, is black.

7. Asked by a Norwegian camera crew if he had a message for England's upcoming opponents, immediately responded with, "'Yes. F**k off Norway." Then ran off laughing.

8. Turned up for England training the morning after then-manager Bobby Robson had called him "daft as a brush" with a floor brush sticking out of his socks.

9. When asked for a footballing comment while at Lazio, burped enthusiastically into a TV microphone. He was fined 9000 UKP.

10. Decided it would be a great idea to have massive hair extensions. Looked a fool and had them taken out a day later.

11. After paying for ex-wife Sheryl's breasts implants, sent flowers to the hospital after the operation addressed to 'Dolly Parton'.

12. Astounded commuters in London by jumping on a double-decker in London's Piccadilly Circus and asking if he could have a drive. The bus driver let him, and the passengers thoroughly enjoyed Gazza's impromptu performance.

13. Sent a rose to the Wimbledon dressing room for Vinnie Jones after the infamous ball-squeezing incident. Got a toilet brush in return.

14. Set up best mate Jimmy 'Five Bellies' Gardner with a 'girl' he knew to be a transvestite.

15. Has taken the piss out of refs constantly during his career. On one occasion he sniffed a hapless ref's armpit while he was holding his hand high to signal a free kick.

16. Undeterred by their frosty reactions, Gazza again tried to prove that refs have a sense of humour by yellow-carding the referee after the official had dropped his card during a Rangers v Hibs game. He was booked for his troubles.

17. Players have also suffered Gazza's spur-of-the-moment comedy capers. He spent the whole of one game against Manchester City baiting large-lugged City midfielder Paul Lake by pulling his own ears as wide as possible at every opportunity.

18. As an apprentice desperate to impress then-Newcastle boss Jack Charlton, spent a week's money on fishing gear and begged the famous angler to give him a lesson. On arrival at th riverbank, Charlton promptly threw all but the rod out into the briny, then poured a bottle of Newcastle Brown into the water, dipped in the rod and within seconds was pulling out a whopper. Lesson over.

19. As 'perk' of boot-cleaning duties during his apprenticeship, took Kevin Keegan's Golas home to show his mates. But left them on the Newcastle Underground.

20. When playing for England against Belgium in Italia 90, ridiculed Enzo Scifo as he lay on the ground clutching his leg.Gazza thought he was play-acting, so did a mime of his own which involved hopping on one leg with his tongue lolling out.

21. Turned up at a modelling assignment with former Spurs team-mate Vinnie Samways and tried to take the poor lad's trousers off on the catwalk.

22. Celebrated his new-found hero status after flying home from Italia 90 by wearing a huge pair of fake plastic boobs and stomach bearing the legend 'Gazza'.

23. On meeting the president of Denmark's FA, pretended he could speak Danish. When invited to demonstrate, imitated The Muppet Show's Swedish Chef.

24. Conned Five Bellies into eating a mince pie after he'd scraped out the filling and replaced it with cat shit.

25. Walked into the Middlesbrough canteen and orderedlunch wearing nothing but his training socks.

26. Paid 20 UKP for a Mars Bar in a newsagents in his home town of Dunston, then told the shop owner to spend the change on sweets for local kiddies.

27. Woke fellow Ranger and best mate Ally McCoist for a game of snooker in the middle of the night - because he couldn't sleep.

28. Took a documentary team to a beautiful Scottish cottage which he informed them was his new place, pretended he'd forgotten his key and knocked instead. When the door opened, told the befuddled housewife that he was doing a telly advert and wanted to know if she preferred Daz or Omo.

29. Crashed Middlesbrough's team bus at the club's training ground and caused 10,000 UKP worth of damage.

30. While at Rangers, urinated over sleeping teammate Richard Gough.

31. Handed 1000 UKP over to Jimmy Five Bellies after betting that the burly boozer couldn't withstand a cigarette lighter's heat on the bridge of his nose for five seconds. Jimmy could. Twice.

32. Pulled England teammate Paul Ince's shorts down during an open training session. Ince's arse ended up all over the papers.

33. Took the piss out of his own 'crying game' in Italia 90 by doing an ad for Walkers Crisps where he bawled after Gary Lineker stopped him nicking his crisps.

34. Stuck his tongue out when the TV cameras panned past him during the national anthem at Italia 90.

35. Prepared for games during that hugely important tournament by playing marathon games of tennis in the scorching noonday sun. Then was still the best player on the pitch.

36. Thought it would be appropriate to wear a blue fright wig before the 1991 FA Cup final.

37. In his time, has agreed to dress as a Roman centurion, a clown, Oliver Hardy and Braveheart for 'photo opportunities'.

38. While his Italia 90 teammate was the hero of Hillsborough, marched into a Sheffield barbers and demanded "a Waddle cut".

39. When Gazza signed for Spurs in 1988, he came down to finalise the deal with a bunch of his Geordie mates. They tookover the posh hotel in Hadley Wood where Spurs were footing the bill and wreaked havoc. Gazza met then-chairman Irving Scholar and began talks by saying, "We'd like to thank you for the best three days of our lives."

40. Asked to leave West Lodge Park Hotel in London afterguests were treated to the sight of a naked Five Bellies swimming across the duck pond.

41. On his first night in Rome after signing for Lazio, gave his minder the slip, put his shoes by an open window and hid in a cupboard. The Minder thought he'd committed suicide.

42. Recorded a video message for a corporate party and signed off with a cheery "Happy Christmas, you f***ing w***ers".

43. Greeted reporters in Rome by standing up, asking for silence,then farting at ear-splitting volume.

44. Taught all his Lazio teammates to swear in English and in a Geordie accent.

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