Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Revisionism and coincidence

With Chris Mort now settling in to the Chairman's office at Newcastle, it's interesting to see how the press have reacted to Fat Fred's departure. Michael Walker in The Guardian appears to summarise most of the national reports I've seen, noting that the departure of the Fat one isn't going to be met with any sadness on Tyneside.

Looking locally, Paul Gilder in the Journal seems keen to twist the knife, whilst over on The Evening Chronicle, Alan Oliver manages to extract some quotes from the fat has-been, and perhaps unsurprisingly spends his time sympathising with Shepherd and eulogising his achievements at Newcastle.

Now, I'm sorry Alan, but have we been following the same football club for the last 15 years?

I've got a great deal of respect for the work done under Sir John Hall, but to allow Fat Fred to say that he "always backed his managers" is bollocks. For every multi million pound signing (and I accept there have been quite a few) there have been times when the cupboard was bare and managers have been forced to sell before they could buy, or work on a shoestring budget (e.g. the sale of Steve Watson by Ruud , or the signing of Kevin Gallacher by Bobby.) During all that time, Fred kept banking his salary, and declaring a big fat dividend, so let's cut the crap and point out that the person Fat Fred has backed most of all during his time on the board has been Fat Fred.

Perhaps the most telling thing in all this is that, with the police having recently come calling at SJP investigating potential financial misdemeanours, the severing of Fat Fred's contract ends his association with the club immediately. Should further investigations be done, we can now happily seek to distance ourselves from the previous regime, and start building for the future with a clean slate.

Is it coincidence that he's gone so soon after the dawn raid, when previously he'd been expected to last until at least the end of the transfer window? What do you reckon?


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