The extent to which football is out of touch with reality received further evidence from Dave Richards, the PL Chairman at the time Richard Scudamore was appointed. Apparently, the only other candidate for the job was Chris Croker, whose father Ted was a former FA Chairman.
Richards, who accused FIFA and UEFA of “stealing” football from the English in “light-hearted” comments, was chairman of Sheffield Wednesday at the time of the Hillsborough disaster. His ‘claim to fame’ was to refuse to site a memorial to the dead at the stadium (since rectified by the club).
Anyway, I could go back to Croker – the one who got the job – the likes of Hardaker and before to continue the ‘out of touch’ routine. But there’s no need. Sir Dave, knighted for services to sport *cough* in 2006, reckons that Tricky Dicky should give the money to the people who earned.
If somebody gave me £5million, I’d hand it to the staff, the people who did the job. But Richard was the figurehead and figureheads get paid, don’t they?
The pants-on-fireometer just blew a gasket. The head of an organisation giving up his bonus to hand it over to the staff? No, I can’t think of one where that has happened either.
Dave cut the interview short at that point as Noddy parped the horn impatiently. He had to pick up Big Ears as well. Thanks to the recent incursion of Uber into this area, work was harder to come by. Much tougher since their driver crashed after his SatNav sent him the wrong way up River Road. All that traffic diverted onto the High Street; nightmare!
Some people are reading this and wondering what it has to do with Arsenal? And who is Noddy? I’ve heard of Uber but Big Ears?
It’s Christmas, Here’s Your Gift
As you might have guessed, it’s fairly quiet on the Arsenal front. Tottenham continues to be the gift which keeps on giving with the news that they are planning to play out the remainder of the season at Wembley.
The plan is for an additional 17 games which is an interesting number. From 15th January 2019, they have nine home Premier League fixtures to fulfil. That leaves a potential eight matches.
They could face home ties in rounds 3 – 6 (4) which means four matches remaining. Obviously, there will be none in the League Cup after their second humbling defeat against Arsenal at the Emirates next month.
So, where are these other four games? That’s planning for failure, that is. Curiously, there are four rounds in the Europa League…
Which vaguely segues into England’s game this afternoon. It’s the weirdest thing but this match kicks off at 2pm, which everyone agrees is an ideal time for matchgoing fans.
Strangely enough, when club cup competitions are played at Wembley, no second thought is given to the matchgoing fan. The 5-5.30pm kick-off so favoured by broadcasters play havoc with supporters travel arrangements. Not today. Which begs the question of why it’s good enough for England but not clubs?
He who pays the piper is, of course, the answer
Death or Glory is a little strong for this afternoon but putting the ghosts of the past to bed is a major task. There is no revenge for losing a World Cup semi-final and certainly not in a glorified friendly.
However, there is a case to be made that reaching the semi-finals of the Nations League is a benchmark for progress. Let’s be honest, England aren’t noted for sustained periods of success. 1966 – 72 was one such period but post-Italia ’90 and post-Euro 96 tournaments were dismal.
So, Southgate can emulate Sir Alf and reach the last four of consecutive tournaments. Such are the low expectations his predecessors engendered that I don’t think we’ll manage it. As I said yesterday, it’s so typically England to have glory in their grasp only to end up relegated. At least the Germans got there first…