“I will put a fixture sheet through his door and have offered to pick him up whenever he is willing to come.” So intoned Abbey F.C. manager Chris Foster of his acquisition of former England midfielder Paul Gascoigne. If Foster’s club doesn’t ring a bell, that’s because they play in the Bournemouth Sunday League Division Four, with the Bournemouth Echo’s Neil Perrett almost besides himself with glee at the prospect of seeing Gazza take on “either Rentech Repairs or ARC Cleaning when the season kicks off next month.”

“I dropped him off at his flat a couple of weeks ago and he asked me to go to the shop to get him some cigarettes, Foster said.” “When I got back, I was invited in and we had a good chat about various things.

“I gave him the cigarettes and pulled out the signing-on form at the same time. He signed it there and then. I was chuffed to bits and ran to the car as fast as I could. I was skipping like a 14-year-old!

“I texted some of the other lads and told them I had a real scoop of a signing. They thought it was either Taffy Richardson or Tommy Killick.”

Asked whether Gazza would have to fight for his place in the Abbey starting line-up, Foster replied: “If he feels he is fit enough to play, he can play wherever he likes – at that includes in goal!”