Have you ever been to Blackburn? I have. It’s like many old Lancashire mill towns, a little bit grim, a little bit run-down and definitely not like either Milan or the Brazilian resort of Florianopolis and it’s certainly not a regular haunt for wealthy Brazilians.
And yet the football club has been insisting this week that they have been ‘in talks’ with Ronaldinho as though a deal to bring him to Ewood Park is ever going to happen. The board and the manager talk of him being on their ‘list.’ Well we can all have a list. Judy Jetson is on my list of women to have sex with before I die but unless I can become a cartoon and climb inside my TV it is never going to happen. But she’s still on my list.
The club is in danger of making itself look foolish in trying to court a player like Ronaldinho, not because they shouldn’t have ambition to bring good payers to the club but because it is a ridiculous waste of time. It also makes them look desperate just sign a famous name, which even if they were able to pull off a deal for, would be a monumental waste of money, money better spent on players with a future, not flabby over the hill men who are only there for a pay day.
It looks like the sort of decision someone who knew little about football would try to make. Steve Kean cuts a slightly uneasy figure as manager. He looks wide-eyed and a bit scared in front of the TV cameras and it can’t help having owners who seem to like discussing transfer targets on Twitter rather than with him. He also refers to the Chairwoman of the club as ‘Chairlady’ which sounds awkward and gauche as though the idea of having a woman as a boss is an alien concept to him. Would he refer to a male in that post as a Chairgentleman?
And now the deal for the Brazilian is clearly going nowhere, he’s talking of trying to convince Beckham to join Blackburn! It’s embarrassing. Only someone who had lost their mind would even for one second think Beckham would pitch up at Blackburn, not even if they paid him the GDP of Switzerland and made him a pair of gold trousers.
It’s one thing to try and paint yourself as a player in the market but this ‘look at us, we’re trying to sign big names’ approach is laughable and is clearly a strategy that the owners think will show them in a good light. They’re so wrong and had they known anything about football culture they’d know how it is making them look comical
They have made themselves a laughing stock and it will affect the reputation of the club for realistic transfer targets. Who next is on their list? Iniesta? Messi, or perhaps they’ll get Pele out of retirement! Getting rid of Allardyce wasn’t necessarily a bad move if you want to bring free-flowing football to your club, but doing so without a replacement in mind and with no coherent transfer strategy other than to make a list of famous players most of whom couldn’t find Blackburn on a map let alone want to play for them, is frankly amateurish silliness.
Editor’s Note: Johnny’s new book: “We Ate All The Pies: How Football Swallowed Britain Whole” is available via Amazon US or Amazon UK.
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