As if relegation from the Premier League in May wasn't enough humiliation for one year, fans of English Championship club West Bromwich Albion now have a fresh face-hiding shame to endure: a new mascot in the shape of a combi boiler.
Boiler Man is the bizarre culmination of a deal the club has struck with British brand Ideal Boilers, which includes West Brom's shirt sponsorship.
Boiler Man landed himself in, ahem, hot water during the Baggies' first Championship game of the new season on Saturday against Bolton Wanderers, receiving plenty of verbal abuse as he danced around the pitch – with taunts emanating from both sets of supporters.
After footage from the game went viral, it seems that Ideal Boilers has managed to garner the kind of marketing that money can’t buy, however. (Although whether you would purchase it if you could remains a moot point.)
Let’s hope that Boiler Man's suit is made of some suitably sturdy metal, because there’s going to be an awful lot of flak – quite possibly literal and metaphorical – coming his way this season. And that’s just from the West Brom fans.
Scroll through our gallery above for some other past and present examples of the peculiarly British phenomenon of particularly unfortunate, odd and downright crazy football mascots.
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