What a complete bloody mess.
I suppose I should declare an interest. Well, it’s more of an obsession, that’s lasted for 47 years.
Manchester United – or as it used to say on the club badge, Manchester United Football Club.
Before you dismiss this as the spoilt rantings of a plastic glory hunter, or whatever charge fans of other clubs normally lay at the door of United followers, this hurts.
It hurts a lot. Personally and professionally.
Personally because the moment (probably in Shoot! magazine in 1971) I first laid eyes upon a picture of the mesmerisingly cool George Best wearing a red shirt – red has always been my favourite colour, that was it.
I was smitten.
During those 47 years, I’ve been depressed (now and for the majority of the seventies) distraught (1974 relegation) bored (Dave Sexton/van Gaal/Mourinho) and ecstatic (1993 title/1999 treble/2008 Champions League & the majority of the SAF years). It’s rarely been dull (ok, it is at the moment and was under Sexton, etc) but I’ve never felt this level of contempt for those supposedly running (ruining) my club.
The Glazers are money-making myopics – who cares about the football, when you can salivate over the share price?
Ed Woodward, may be adept at persuading Japanese tractor manufacturers and Nigerian soft drinks makers, and the rest, to part with their sponsorship moolah, but when it comes to knowing how to run a football club, well, he’s a total banker.
We’re talking about the club of Busby, Munich, Best, Law and Charlton, the Class of ’92 and of course Sir Alex.
Letting Sir Alex Ferguson and David Gill leave together was a business cock-up of such monumental stupidity that the repercussions are still being felt five years on, and will for the next five at least, the way things are going.
Then there’s the current shambles. Mourinho is yesterday’s man. The footballing equivalent of the barfly lurching from one horrified punter to another slurring his words and showing them a crumpled photo of his long-lost love. In his case Chelsea 2004.
If the football wasn’t bad enough, the handling of the media – and the message – has plunged things to another all-time low.
Public training ground spats, a social media circus, with leaks and emojis hitting the headlines far more successfully than the team can hit the back of the net.
Maybe I should offer myself up to supply some much needed training? By God they need it.
No leadership, no plan A (never mind B), no planning, and for the foreseeable future, no hope.
But hey! What does it matter? Because managing director Richard Arnold is happy to boast that United now have more Facebook followers than the NBA, NHL and NFL combined.
Who can blame them? It’s car crash stuff being played out and served up on social media by the minute.
Manchester United, the club – my club – that now values Twitter over trophies.