World Cup-related survey hell begins

With the World Cup six weeks away, employers are falling over each other to position themselves as caring souls by offering staff ways to watch matches without getting fired.

Asda is giving workers up to two weeks' unpaid leave to enjoy the footy fiesta.

Surrey-based HR firm Croner, meanwhile, is using Robson Brown PR to promote a survey that suggests soccer fever could cause 'one in seven young men' to throw a sickie during the World Cup.

Sixteen per cent of men and women aged between 18 and 29 told pollsters that they have previously taken 'unauthorised absence for a major sporting event'.

Croner describes the figure as 'staggering'. Perhaps we should be staggered that the figure is not somewhat higher, given our difficulty in contacting PROs during major football games.

Hacks should expect the flurry of soccer-related surveys to crescendo as England's first game nears.

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