Robbie Williams has continued his feud with Liam Gallagher as he imitated a chicken while speaking about the Oasis frontman’s refusal to face him in a boxing match.
The Angels singer, who is on track for his 13th number one album this week with The Christmas Present, spoke as he returned to his native Stoke-on-Trent where he will play a gig at Port Vale Football Club next summer.
At a press conference at the Vale Park stadium on Tuesday, he was asked by fellow Stoke resident Eddie Hall, winner of the World’s Strongest Man in 2017, when he was going to knock Gallagher out.
Williams replied: “You surmise from this whatever you want but I’ve asked him twice now, nothing back.
“I’ve been boxing and I’m loving it. When I do Soccer Aid I get to pretend I’m a footballer and when I’m on stage I get to pretend I’m a singer, and I would love the experience of pretending to be a boxer too. But I only want to fight Liam.”
He imitated a chicken as he spoke of Gallagher’s apparent reluctance to get into the ring.
The feud between the two musicians started in the mid-1990s, although Williams’s wife Ayda recently dismissed his plans for a fight and told him to grow up.
Williams, 45, could equal the UK chart record of Elvis Presley if his festive album takes the top spot this week.
Speaking of the King, he said: “He won’t stay dead. He just keeps on putting out albums and it keeps becoming impossible to beat him.
“But, you know, fingers crossed, not counting any chickens before they’re hatched. Album’s looking really good, to be doing really well this week.”
Asked what it meant to him as a father to release a Christmas album, the singer, who has three children, joked: “Well hopefully it will pay for their presents for the next 10 years.”
The former Take That star was staying at the stadium on Tuesday evening to watch his team, Port Vale, play Mansfield and said it was “good to be home”.
He said: “I miss the people. I miss my nan. I miss being normal. I miss who I was before this whole journey took off. I miss my roots.
“If I was a stick of rock and you broke me, it would say Stoke-on-Trent all the way through.”
Williams spoke out about his mental health, saying he took steps to guard against it becoming a problem.
He said: “The weird thing about mental health is you don’t know you’ve got it because you’re in it and you don’t know this is wrong.
“It was such a relief to be told you’ve got depression because you just think you’re weird. You’re in a prison in your own head.”
The Robbie Williams is Coming Home gig will take place on June 20 in aid of the Donna Louise Hospice for Children and Young People, Unicef UK and The Hubb Foundation.