The sad news reached the Betfred offices on Thursday 30th November, that the legendary and troubled frontman of The Pogues, Shane MacGowan passed away today at the age of 65.
As well as paying tribute to the charasmatic hell-raiser, after a life most of us can only dream of, we take a look at the odds of the band he fronted, The Pogues, to go back to number one at Christmas, as legions of fans new and old listen to the absolute classic that is Fairytale of New York and raise a glass to the Celtic punk singer.
In a statement on social media, The Pogues posted:
"It is with the deepest of sorrow and heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of Shane MacGowan.
Shane died peacefully at 3am this morning with his wife Victoria and family by his side."
After a career spanning over 40 years, the 65-year-old had been seriously ill in recent times and hadn't been seen recently in public but the sad news will still come as a shock to the millions of Pogues fans.
'Fairytale of New York' is always a Christmas favourite but it will be especially poignant in 2023, with the sad loss of the man who provided that voice that no other could quite match.
It is the most-played Christmas song of the 21st century and digital downloads are already through the roof for the single following the news.
Amazingly the song has never been to number one in the United Kingdom but has been in the top 20 for the last eight years, following the change to the UK charts qualification system.
What better tribute for such an amazing song could there be, than to be played in the run up to Christmas and be announced as Christmas number one finally.
"And the bells were ringing out, For Christmas day!"
RIP Shane Macgowan 1957-2023