We put the brakes on another footballing weekend of chanting, sackings and other stuff which you’ve probably lost interest in already…
Nigel Adkins. The paragon of perma-smiling, perma-tanned managers, Adkins, finally had a reason to be chirpy. Although it might have been interesting to see how he levelled increasingly poor results with his perky disposition, it was probably for the best that Southampton got off the mark. It saves us from months of praise for Saints ‘playing the football the right way’ in spite of defeat after defeat.
They were, ultimately, relatively impressive in their 4-1 victory over Aston Villa, with the charmingly ferocious Rickie Lambert striking twice. But it’s back to Merseyside for the Scouser on Saturday as his side go in search of back-to-back victories against in-form Everton…
Manchester United. Last season’s final-day drama in the Premier League was supposed to be a watershed – when Manchester City realised they were able to do what their cross-town rivals had been doing for years and squeeze through when all seemed lost.
But in 2012/13 so far, it’s back to the status quo. United were slack and unimaginative at Anfield on Sunday but by luck and a certain amount of judgement they scraped through. A couple of hours later the champions were busy making hard work of a similar test, only they couldn’t hold on.
Roberto Mancini’s men may not yet have tasted defeat but they have conceded in every game so far and they’re on the road at Fulham next weekend…
Terry Brown. Managers react to the sack in different ways. Some will march into the nearest television studio to crowbar their name back into focus; others will take off to a beach in the middle of nowhere or trot out the spend-time-with-family line, which invariably means playing golf ad nauseam. But when much-loved Wimbledon boss Terry Brown was reluctantly given the boot last week, he had other plans.
“I will go to the Wycombe game tomorrow, get drunk and cheer Wimbledon on,” he is reported to have said. And if he was true to his word, there was a slightly tooty out-of-work manager strolling around the Home Counties on Saturday night after the Dons, under caretaker Simon Bassey, secured a 1-0 win at Wycombe, their first league success since the opening day.
Football League managers. That defeat for Wycombe was the final straw for the club as they parted company with Gary Waddock. The former Aldershot chief had done remarkably well to cling on to his job despite presiding over two relegations (and a promotion) in three seasons. Wanderers are now down in 21st in League Two after taking just a point from their last six outings.
Ipswich manager Paul Jewell may find himself going the same way before long, after his side lost at home to Charlton he admitted: “If Marcus Evans wants to put Harry Redknapp in charge he can do it.” There is nothing quite like an out of work Redknapp to make you doubt the strength of your position. It’s like the most sought-after boy in school announcing he is single. Sort of like that.
And time may finally be up on Steve Kean, too. If reports are to be believed, the Scot who has taken belligerence to new levels is understood to be on his way out, despite Blackburn sitting second in the Championship.
Coventry. The Sky Blues have just appointed a new man – Mark Robins – but it’s the same old story for a side which has forgotten how to win. City fans are probably regularly reminded that their club has not finished in the top six of any division since 1970 but it is the miserable present which is occupying minds at the moment.
They were beaten at home by Carlisle on Saturday, to prolong their winless start to the League One campaign. It is now five straight league defeats and, including the end of last season, 14 matches without a victory. Five more and they’ll have equalled a record set back in 1919 of 19 games without a league success.
But Robins reckoned there were encouraging signs at the weekend; surely they can’t keep sinking?
John Terry. In a week when a sweary bloke with an important job was called on to resign it was instead another sweary bloke with an important job who did resign as John Terry handed in his imaginary captain’s armband and went on his way. And that’s about it, a breath of fresh air for England and some stewing for Terry. Bye.
This week’s randomly-selected sentence from Dave Bassett’s autobiography Settling the Score: “We dropped interest in Chris Waddle like he was a hot potato, although I have to say that my admiration for his skills was not diminished.”
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