RIGHT, I’m back after a couple of weeks catching rays, being pushed into the pool and recharging the batteries while operating under a strict lap-top ban (there was occasional surreptitious use of the phone though). So what have I missed?
Nothing has happened transfer-wise but then we didn’t expect anything immediate as football is on holiday and in World Cup lock-down mode. But what about the cultural nuances, memes and in-jokes from our obsessive 24/7 rolling ticker-tape of Boronalia? Oh no! I’m out of the loop.
Some back to school musing…
Looking through the Gazette’s I’ve missed while swanning around the sun-loungers there is the usual Talking Boro post-mortems and our Young Guns winning the Euro U17 Championships (if West Ham can claim the ’66 World Cup then the silverware is ours, that’s official).
But the most intriguing “what if” article came with the comments by Neil Warnock about he would have loved to boss Boro, including a line where he appears to retrospectively throw his hat into the ring to have been Gareth Southgate’s mentor and/or director of football.
How the arch-pragmatist and practioner of football’s Dark Arts would have fitted tactically with Nice Guy Gareth’s Arsenal-lite aspirations is uncertain but it would have ticked a few hypothetical boxes. Gareth was badgeless and struggled to maintain discipline with some players who were his mates a months before and he had litle coaching experience (and was possibly feeling some resistance from the left-over McClarenista technocrats).
It’s a thought to mull over. Or wake screaming to.
And I thought I’d come back to find a brand new shirt being blasted by the fashion police about colour, fabric and the clash between the need for street sharp and the aesthetic limitations of scientifically engineered climacool technology. But the Boro strip tease goes on. You can buy it in advance but you can’t see it.
I’m guessing its red with a white trim of some sort. Something that echoes something from this historical menu . My own preference is for the PR gift of the Above Average White Band for the home kit – as I point out every year – and a blue/black Inter stripes away kit.
How hard can it be? Here’s my mock-up this year…
I don’t remember all this fuss over kit launches when I was a kid. My gut feeling is that such a clever ad-land campaign of teases is probably a bit wasted on a product that has broadly fixed parameters and has a fairly limited geographic and demographic market. We don’t need laser light shows or virals, just show people what they will look like and stock enough of them them in the shops across the various size ranges to head off complaints of incompetence.
I don’t know what Boro have planned as the grand finale of their launch strategy but I hope and pray it is something as eye-catchingly camp as this swinging 1970 Bundesliga fashion show with some staggering beautiful kits and some serious dance action.