|Markism Today: "If it worked for Liverpool then why not here...."|
Mon 18th Apr 2011 18:57 by Marko
A few weeks ago, this column remarked what a retrospective (and backward) step Liverpool had taken by re-appointing their former manager Kenny Dalglish - maybe it is not such a bad idea after all? WARNING CONTAINS LANGUAGE THAT MAY OFFEND.
Much to my surprise, Kenny has rebreathed some of that old fire into Liverpool and going back to the future has rightfully fuelled grounds for optimism on the red half of Merseyside.
Fast forward dateline Friday April 22nd 2011 22:00 - Leeds United 0 Reading 3 (Ian Hat-trick) earlier in the day Notts Forest had comprehensively thrashed Leicester 9-2 so Leeds sit in seventh a point behind Forest with a vastly inferior goal-difference.
Uncle Ken moodily shuffles into the boardroom, Suzanna on his arm and Shaun Harvey trailing in his wake. He is over for Easter as part of his 60 day allowance from his tax-exile, the boos of the crowd still ring in his ears and he summonses Harvey to pass him the phone.
"If those fucking thieving Liverpool scouse robbing bastards can do it, so can I" Ken rants.
"Darling, language!" Suzanna blushes - but she has heard worse. Much worse.
Within 5 minutes, Simon Grayson and Glynn Snodin are relieved of their duties and a press conference is announced for Saturday morning to name the new Leeds United manager and assistant.
Its Howard Wilkinson and his trusted sidekick Mick Hennighan.
"The thing is," purrs Ken "Liverpool have successfully proven that going back to the 1990's is not a renegade step, so at Leeds, on our doorstep we had the last manager to actually win something at this club doing nothing meaningful other than sitting in the padded seats at Hillsborough, who brings a wealth of experience to the game. Obviously we are sad to see Glynn and Simon go with our best wishes but frankly they have failed to sort out the defence and have had most of the season to do so."
A stunned Wilko is asked to speak "Obviously I am honoured and very surprised to get the call from the chairman late last night. However I am delighted to be back here after 15 long years away and keen to build on the good work done by Mr Bates since he rescued the club from oblivion."
"Fucking cunt," murmured Hennighan "Remember in 1983 when he slagged your tactics off in the Chelsea programme notes when you were Wednesday boss, boss?"
The press-conference fielded the usual questions, including one about the possible sale of 1990's style Sgt Wilko's Barmy Army Beany Hats - the chairman confirmed that discussions were ongoing with the owner of a Market Bizarre in Redcar who is known to have bought the last job lot of them in the autumn of 1996 when Wilkinson was replaced with George Graham.
Wilko and Mick step out onto the ER turf, it is a fine morning and just one week before the visit of Burnley to turn Leeds' season back around and get them on course for promotion.
"Not much has changed," muttered Hennighan "Still a fucking dump, it has hardly been painted since were last here".
"Aye," nodded Wilko "But it were far worse in '88 when we first came here"
"So what's the plan?" Mick ask's his boss.
"Dunno er bit late in the day for wholesale changes, can we sign on the emergency loan system thingy?" Wilko asked.
"Fuck knows, that prick Harvey is on the phone to the FA first thing Monday - who did you have in mind?" Mick asked.
"The old masterplan, to proliferate the hot-bed of British nay World soccer and lure the finest talent to Leeds - like we did back in the day" Wilko spread his arms out, closed his eyes and imagined he was once again the messiah.
"You mean Geordieland? Newcastle? Fucking hell that Carroll lad cost £35m and if fucking Bates don't even know who the fucking owners are how the fuck is he going to ask for that sort of dough"
"Don't be daft Mick" Howard chuckled "I was on about Sheffield!"
"Sheffield!" Mick spluttered "I don't want to point out the fucking obvious Howard but Sheffield United are bottom of the Championship and Wednesday are in the Third Division. Hot-bed of football? More like shit-tip of the north?"
Howard stepped on the turf "But it worked last time Mick, it will work again- remember the old lads? Chappy. Shutty, Varadi, Dylan Kerr, Pembo, Beesley? - it made me laugh when then went on about Tony Fucking Currie in these parts but did he track back and defend?....Gerron blower to Micky and Meggy and lets get that Steel City talent back up the M1 again!"
"Righto!" Mick nodded.
"By the way, what do you know about the current Leeds squad?" Howard asked.
Mick scratched his head "Dunno Howard lad, there were someone called Bradley Johnson - scored a good goal against the Arse inb the cup saw it on telly...some Becchio character, lasses name, lasses haircut and Snodders..."
"Snodders!" Howard's face lit up "As in Glynn Snodin?"
"Nah Bates fucked him off with Grayson - Snodders as in Robert Snodgrass..."
"What a shame!" Howard sat down crestfallen "I were going to play him left-back next Saturday..."