In the interest of trying to attract divine intervention, intimidating the French and getting some free publicity, bookmaker Paddy Power has constructed a 100-foot tall statue of England manager Roy Hodgson on the white cliffs of Dover. The construction is visible from the shores of France -- England's formidable first opponent in the Euro 12 group stage and is based on the Christ the Redeemer statue that sits high above Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Roy the Redeemer stands 108 feet tall with an armspan of 96 feet, weighs eight tons, is held up by two giant cranes and the image required 96 hours of continuous printing. It is a response to "the plight of England fans who felt the national team would need divine intervention for success during this month's European Championship" and "[i]t is hoped that the looming face of Roy the Redeemer will unsettle 'Les Bleus' ahead of England's opening game on Monday."
Said Paddy Power's Ken Robertson:
"Since Christ the Redeemer was constructed in Rio de Janeiro in 1931, Brazil has gone on to become the world's leading footballing nation. We're hoping some of that success can rub off on England in time for their Euro 2012 opener against France on Monday. Anyway, at the end of the day this is definitely the closest Roy will get to Rio this month!"
OK, so maybe this massive structure was built just so he could make a Roy Hodgson/Rio Ferdinand joke. If so, it was worth it.