"Ugh, Fruit Pastilles."

Regular Footy Blog contributor Duane Rollins dropped this link in his Twitter feed. An eight year-old girl sent Roberto Mancini a packet of Fruit Pastilles in the mail. In return, Mancini and assistant Brian Kidd gratefully ate them, pinned up her letter, and sent her a signed photo with a note of thanks:

Little Megan Kinghorn noticed the City boss munching a packet of Fruit Pastilles on the touchline at the Etihad Stadium. To help cheer him up after a run of bad results, she sent him a packet of the sweets – and was over the blue moon when Mancini got in touch to say thank you. Mancini even revealed he had pinned up a letter Megan wrote to him on the club’s noticeboard.

While this story is undoubtedly sweeter than the candy which it is inadvertently advertising, it also feels like the beginning of a redemptive comedy-drama about a struggling Premier League manager and the one little girl who had faith in him. You can imagine the voiceover to the ad, as Peter Gabriel’s Solsbury Hill plays in the background:

VOICEOVER: “Meet Robbie. He’s a soccer manager at the end of his rope.”

MANCINI: “We have been very strong at home but away have not got the results we want.”

FAN: “You suck, Mancini!”

MANCINI: “I sorry!”

VOICEOVER: “Meet Megan. She’s a girl who likes to eat Fruit Pastilles.”

MEGAN: “Hmm. Fruit Pastilles. Hey look! Mancini is eating them. Mum! Mum! Can we I send Mancini some?”

MUM: “Oh you and you’re CRAZY imagination! Seriously, leave me alone.”

VOICEOVER: “What started as a simple gift would become the inspiration for a team, a nation, a planet under threat from war, and global warming.”

MANCINI: “We must win all six games to stay in the race. Is difficult.”

MEGAN: “I believe in you, Roberto.”

MANCINI: “Okay, here’s another signed photograph. My stomach hurts from this candy. Can you play for Mario Balotelli today?”

VOICEOVER: “Roberto Mancini and Megan Kinghorn star in, Fruit Pastilles of the Heart. Because the power of friendship can inspire managers to win six football games and to somehow stop Manchester United from getting enough points to secure a title after leading by eight points in early April.”