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Lions lead by Donkies (Asses)
Written by Curryman on Friday, 31st Oct 2014 16:09

"Lions led by donkeys" is a phrase popularly used to describe the poor leadership of the British Tommies of WW1 and to blame the generals who instructed them. The contention is that the brave soldiers (lions) were sent to their deaths by incompetent, foolish and indifferent leaders (donkeys). In my analogy I must include in the Lions, the Subalterns (The junior Officers who lead from the front) only to be picked out by the German gunners as first to die. Subaltern casualty/mortality rates were catastrophically high during WWI and estimates for the mortality rates range from 65 to 81%. This was, at its lowest estimate, double the rate for enlisted men. The remark, however, goes back a lot further than Alan Clark who in his book ‘the Donkeys, coined the phrase. It appears to have actually come from an ancient Arabic proverb which says "An army of sheep led by a lion would defeat an army of lions led by a sheep". Also, during the Crimean War a letter was reportedly sent home by a British soldier quoting a Russian officer who had said that British soldiers were ‘Lions commanded by Asses'

I do not apologise for the history lesson to start, or for the obvious, nay blatant use of the tragedy of WW1 as the beginning of the blog and as a comparable source to our beloved Blackpool FC. Why? Because I feel the club has for a time now basically been a battlefield.

The Lions (the players) The Subalterns (the Manager and his staff) and the Asses (our wonderful owners) all have a part in this blog and to just take it a step further I should remind you that the subalterns are part of the Lions.

As in WW1 where the generals could do no harm see no harm and speak no harm and were of course completely blameless for anything that happened on the battlefield, so we have a family who, it seems, are quite prepared to sacrifice as many Managers as they can by starving them of support, providing them without the tools they need to do what they should be doing, whilst sitting in their ivory towers away from the heat drinking fine wine and blaming everyone, bar themselves, for the demise of this once great club. The similarities are so obvious I’m surprised no one has noticed previously.

Chief Ass appears to be the one who cannot open his mouth without telling more untruths and instead of long ears is now beginning to show signs of a growing nose much like Pinocchio. As we embark on our fourth Manager in twelve months, his antics are only beaten by the owner of Leeds United who is coming up to his fourth in not many months, and that takes some doing.

Players come and go, they always have done and they always will do, however, our turnover of players in the last few years has been immense. A lot of those who arrived also left without either being seen or perhaps after a couple of cameo appearances. What a complete and utter waste of money. Not only that, it appears to have destroyed the continuity we had and the camaraderie which had patiently been built up with some of the older players being at the club for a number of years welcoming the newer players into the fold. All gone in one fell swoop, instead we have a gathering of players, probably very fine players in their own rights, who seem rather oblivious of the strengths and weaknesses of their colleagues in the team, a team that has not completely gelled, no doubt due to the lack of pre-season and the requirements of this very tough league. We have a new manager who has been handed an extremely tough task to rescue our sinking club from going into the first division. Time will tell if he is up to the job, but I feel the damage has already been done and his mission is impossible. Our Lions will no doubt be the sacrificial Lambs when all goes wrong. I hope to look back on this one day, smile and say ‘I got that one wrong’.

There is only one family and in particular one man to blame for this helter skelter ride down the Leagues since our glory days in the Premier League and we fans need to remember that. We need to keep up the pressure to see if we can rid the club of the Asses and encourage a new ‘knight in shining armour’ to take control of OUR football club.

Lee Clark is not to blame for the sacking of any of the previous managers, Lee Clark is not responsible for the perilous position we currently find ourselves in, Lee Clark is not responsible for the lack of decent training ground, Lee Clark is not responsible for the lack of funding or the parsimonious spending on repairs to the cladding or indeed the playing staff. He is responsible for taking a vacancy and jumping from the frying pan into the fire, and as such it is up to us to ensure we back him and the team to the hilt. Let’s give him a warm welcome and save our embitterment and rancour for those who deserve it. The Asses.

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