Phantom Striker Spooks Fans In Beeb Nightmare

BATTLING Boro were lucky to get a point after being battered by Watford –  although they could have snatched an unlikely victory if only striker Curtis Main had taken his chances.

Watford dominated. It’s true. I saw it on TV.

Boro’s impressive long spell of first half pressure  didn’t happen. That part of an entertaining and close fought game’s unfolding narrative was ignored in the edit. The flurry of chances were left on the cutting room floor.  An enthralling 45 minutes with the hosts narrowly on top was reduced to one long range effort from Watford man Vydra that was well saved (possibly by safe hands Luke Steele).

And the second half – a blink and you’ve missed it, Boro’s goal aside – was a one-sided Hornet’s assault with the home side on the ropes.

Apart from the intervention by Curtis Main, of course.  The Doncaster striker  showed the good engines that so endeared him to Aitor Karanka as he made the 70-mile sprint from the Keepmoat to pop up on the flank and take a speculative pop. “Quite remarkable!”


That’s the view the gently snoozing armchair army will have of mighty Middlesbrough if they stayed awake long enough to see the “highlights” on the graveyard shift ghetto that is the Football League Show.

In terms of editorial accuracy it was a new low for the BBC’s flagship late night nod to life outside the Premier League.  The fleeting footage gave an impression that was totally divorced from the reality of the game.

Yes, it is hard to capture the nuances of a fast-moving game in 60 seconds, and to prepare it in four or five hours but that is the nature of the beast.  And they do have highly trained professionals on the case and it is their job. They do it every week. It should be second nature. . Maybe it was a bad day at the office. It happens.

But that was compounded with the most basic identification issues that pointed not to a incidental slip-up on a busy afternoon but to an elemental flaw in pre-match preparation.

Anyone can make a mistake in the heat of battle. Especially if you don’t cover a team regularly.  Players are moving, switching positions, they may have similar haircuts, the same retina-burning bright boots, a similar physique or running style. It happens.  Even the Gazette sometimes gets captions wrong as photos are moved about on a page as deadlines loom. It is an occupational hazard.

And it is easy to trip over unfamiliar names or to compound them. We hear stadium announcers mangle monikers every week on our travels.  After all, even long- time Boro fans struggled with  “Jutkiewicz” so you can see how commentators coming in cold can stumble on a syllable or two.

In recent years it became a standing joke within the club how often  Jason Steele was referred to as “Luke”,  his Barnsley counterpart.  But the elder of the shot-stopping siblings has been around for years so you can see how he has claimed first dibs on the name and it has seeped into the collective consciousness of press boxes across the nation.

And we have often heard in-play name-checks for a parade of greyed out Football Manager computer generated squad fillers like John Bennett, Martin Emms and malapropic midfield man Harris Faroun.

But it is hard to confuse one player who has been prominent in the action all game with another not on the pitch. Or indeed, at the club.  Wait! If only there was some simple numerical device the players could display on their shirts to make out their identity.

Ah yes, squad numbers.  Patrick Bamford –  for it is he – wears 23.

Last season Curtis Main wore the same. And there is the source of confusion.

In response to some terse Teesside tweeting, microphone man Dan O’Hagan later apologised to Boro fans and to Bamford.


I feel sorry for him. Not just because of the flak he took but because a dropped clanger was inevitable given his working arrangements.

The commentator isn’t identifying the men out on the pitch by working from the official team-sheet issued to hacks or even from the back of the programme because he isn’t in the stadium.  How old fashioned. How expensive!

No, he is working from a website squad list while dubbing his script hastily drawn up on the hoof over a video quickly chopped down in a studio by the out-sourced production company putting the programme together.

And the website he is using for his vital, bang-up-to-date information is the BBC Sport one.

You can’t blame him for staying in-house – there may even be a dictate to stick by the Beeb’s own naming conventions and statistics (hence the chaos of the Grant Leadbitter “ghost goal,” an anomaly  that first appeared in the Beeb figures then hung around haunting anoraks for the rest of the season a few years back).

But the BBC Boro page is woefully out of date.  It still has Main listed in the strikers section wearing No 23.  It also has Emnes, Jutkiewicz and Danny Graham listed among the strikers (the latter pair both said to wear the No 9) – but not any of the big summer signings. Maybe it is just buffering and will load any minute now.


BBCsquad list

Look. It is not just up front where the current squad list is obsolete. Even if you make allowances for the possible confusion over loan arrangements, there are 16 players on the rosta there that are no longer at Boro.

According to the Beeb Aitor can pick from Jayson Leutwiler (Shrewsbury), Seb Hines (Coventry), Stuart Parnaby (Hartlepool), Frazer Richardson (Rotherham), Christian Burgess (Peterborough), Nathaniel Chalobah (Burnley), Richard Smallwood (Rotherham), Jacob Butterfield (Huddersfield), Jozsef Varga (Debrecen), Cameron Park (released), Main (Doncaster), Kamara (Columbus Crew), Graham (Sunderland), Emnes (Swansea) and Jutkiewicz (Burnley).

Some of those you can understand may have slipped under the radar. I mean, the last three are playing in the obscurity of the Premier League.

Meanwhile the Beeb’s squad list doesn’t include NINE of the players who featured on the team sheet against Watford – the game being covered – including Kike, Bamford, Ryan Fredericks, Adam Clayton, Jelle Vossen and Kenneth Omeruo. At some point as a commentator you have  to realise there’s a rabbit off,

That website is not fit for purpose. It is beyond a joke. It must be the biggest, most visited sports portal in the country and purports to serve the national game without fear or favour. And it hasn’t been updated since May.  And if it is the basis of a remote and hastily done voiceover, it is amazing that there weren’t more mistakes.

Maybe there would be if we got more air time.

Another major gripe from Boro supporters is the slimline segments the club get on the show.  It is a weekly joke trying to predict exactly how farcically short it will be and exactly how close to the tail end of the Championship round-up.

I time it. Sad, I know. It is usually around the minute mark of action with maybe a few seconds of scene-setting padding and another 10 seconds of snatched interview and, if you are really unlucky, another 10 seconds of superficial and inaccurate analysis.

Earlier this season Boro fans took off their post-pub beer goggles and rubbed their eyes in amazement as erudite former loan star Dave Kitson – the most articulate footballer since the officer class and public schools dominated the game – opined that Dean Whitehead was the team’s lynchpin this term, driving the midfield forward as a second shelf schemer par excellence. Now I like Deano but even his mam wouldn’t buy that one.

A few weeks later Boro were declared to have done well to keep a clean sheet, especially as they were without key defender Jonathan Woodgate.  That’ll be the Jonathan Woodgate who hasn’t played a single minute of league football this term.

Maybe they were getting their information from the Beeb website.

They would be far better patching each club’s well informed local BBC radio man in for a 60-second assessment than leave a semi-detached star floundering over a team he hasn’t seen all season – or Leroy Rosenior guessing based on names he knows.

Boro fans have complained about both highlights and analysis on several occasions and this time – after “CurtisGate” – @kmorrisuk  quickly tweeted a stern letter that brought a swift if sheepish reply from host Manish Bhasin.

He said he would pass it on to the appropriate people – so we can expect a mail-merged “your club name here” generic response in however many working days.

They will be used to fielding complaints from fans of every stripe. It is the nature of the beast.  Football is an emotive subject, supporters are fiercely proud, parochial with a passion and have a touch of paranoia. It is what we do and the intensity does not diminish the lower down the table you go.

If anything, the expectations of fair coverage rise in the lower leagues because the BBC is tax-payer funded and has a public service remit – it’s their job to cover all clubs equally and not just tailgate the Premier League like star-struck autograph hunters.  They are supposed to be lead by real journalists ethics not the needs of the top flight gravy train.

Which makes it galling when they don’t air the programme during international breaks when they could give a rare deserved and considered perspective on the bottom two divisions and do it well before midnight.

Hartlepool’s battle for survival is just as important and worthy of coverage as pampered Premier League prima donnas diving and moaning through a  mid-table makeweight goalless draw – and treated well could even be far more engaging TV.

But the harsh reality is that you can’t fit a quart in a pint pot.  I know. I appreciate that. The show has 72 teams to jam into 90 minutes and is up against technical and time constraints.

They have to weigh up editorial factors and public interest in the “story” of the day with the race against time to edit footage down into bite-sized cameos that capture it.

And of course, the story changes quickly. On Saturday Boro’s game was second v third and could expect a decent show.  But then Bournemouth battered bossless Birmingham 8-0 (poor Malcolm Crosby) and Leeds disposed of their manager of the month and you could feel us slipping down the running order as the day went on. I can accept that.

Every second is precious. So that makes it more infuriating that so much of it is wasted with shots of teams getting off coaches, signing autographs and shaking hands before kick-off.  Unless the team coach broke down and the visitors have arrived towed by a tractor or a fire engine, I’m not that interested.

We don’t need that telegenic garnishing.  On with the action.

Then there’s the problem of the footage itself.  You can only work with the material you’ve got.  Only the featured game gets the Sky Sports no-expense spared multi-camera treatment with angles and close-ups and behind the goal perspectives relaying the drama. It needs the full works thrown at it because it is being sold to foreign markets.

For the rest it is a strictly Primark production with a solitary camera perched high up in the Gods in a gantry with just one perspective panning from end-to-end in a bid to capture that lower league long ball experience.

The footage itself can be low quality, veering between shaky hand-held smartphone chic on close-ups to long range sniper sight shots of key moments unfolding in the far corner.

Technically it is a huge job gathering feeds from 36 games, ordering them, editing them, dubbing video and then getting it all packaged and scripted in six hours. They are to be applauded for that.

The show is valuable. It is culturally vital for clubs who get little exposure.  But it is also dealing with a precious commodity that should be treated with respect.

Do the research. Get the story right. Use the air-time wisely. Bring in experts as pundits.

Maybe it would be better regionalised like Late Kick Off with each area giving a bit more airtime and analysis to their own clubs utilising people who actually know the clubs, the context and the players.  You could still add a 20 minutes high-light package with the best dozen of so games around the country and tell the story. But what do I know?

With just a little bit of thought it could be so much better.



118 thoughts on “Phantom Striker Spooks Fans In Beeb Nightmare

      1. I like your blog, it confirms that most of us have some nouse after all . Why we support the Boro is one of those strange things that defy logic and education. I suppose its part of being human………..human after all!!

  1. Back on the subject of coverage of non-PL football – I wonder whether a different format altogether would be the best route to take. The problem with the FLS coverage is that it seems that those involved have a very limited knowledge or interest of the teams involved – though if it was your main job and were paid a decent salary any other business would expect you to be reading up on the subject and not bluffing your way through each week.

    It’s not like there isn’t plenty of analysis taking place week-in week-out by followers of each club – how long would it take to get a good overview of each club’s issues. In fact what’s possible reminds me when AV and fellow local football journalists pooled resources together for the transfer window stats.

    I wonder if that would be a good model to provide something like a twice monthly newsletter about the Championship to keep those interested up to date with their facts.

    Perhaps even the coverage could involve discussions in the studio with informed representative fans (virtual or otherwise) forming the input with a presenter acting as the chairman. It would add some feeling of the games being meaningful and not disconnected, as currently most of the highlights are voiced-over feeds from the matches with a few plucked-out-of-the-air cliched comments by the ‘expert’ pundits.

    I think more imagination could produce a show worth watching and make fans of each club feel they’re part of something tangible instead of being treated as an unimportant non-PL exercise going through the motions to tick a box in the TV schedule.

  2. Came across this little gem, readers of a certain age can get a few light refreshments in and spend an hour wallowing in nostalgia. I loved it.

  3. Well, I am firmly in the camp of “No Thumbs”.

    A couple of years ago, I used to read the Gazette stories, which were followed by readers’ comments and the ability to post a “Thumbs Up” or a “Thumbs Down” for every comment offered. The results were pitiful to see. It seemed at one stage that there was more conversation about which poster was getting more positive (or negative) responses than the subject being discussed. I stopped reading them.

    I can do without the bells and whistles. I like the clean format of the blog as it is. It’s always a good read and is a regular part of my life.

    While we’re talking about the layout, I have another comment about the “Reply” function. If I understand correctly the way it works, it allows a reply to a particular post to be added immediately after the original post, but this is counter intuitive to the way that I read the blog. Whenever I come back for another browse, I always start my reading from where I last left off. As a result, I can (and do) miss all those replies to a particular post, that at one time just used to be tacked on to the end of the blog as they were posted. To re-cap, if I am to read the blog in it’s entirety, then I must start at the beginning every time to see if anything has been added since my last visit. It’s just not going to happen. Those replies are lost.

    I could perhaps see some value in the “Reply” function, if it would post the comment at the end of the blog, but with a headline reference which would include the original poster’s name and with a time stamp of the original post.

    Great blog. Where’s Dormo these days? Has he changed his name with the new layout?

    **AV writes: I don’t think he made the mass migration at the time. Maybe he was away camping. He occasionally pipes up on twitter. I’ll ask him.

    1. Stories of my demise have been much exaggerated. Nearer the truth is AV’s comment that I missed the mass migration and, yes, I probably was away camping at the time.

      I have followed a little on Twitter generally and #borolive, and that is often good fun and certainly quick, but it is true that I have not tried to get into the blog very much in recent months. I HAVE managed to read the odd article by AV when he has trailed it on Twitter and left a link which I have been able to click on. That was very handy (and if you read this, Vic, it would still be easier to access that way). Previously I didn’t get in via the Gazette website but just by Googling “Anthony Vickers Untypical Boro”, and I was in….. I continued to listen to BBCTees and read the old-fashioned paper Gazette.

      It has taken me AGES to sort out how to log on here (what are the chances I will forget the 140 character password…or is that Twitter?) and the whole transaction was not assisted by a particular plug-in crashing as I was almost finished. I have had enough of then trying to cancel the first abortive registration, then re-register, then realise I’d need to change the password, then wait and wait and wait and wait even longer for the reply email for me to verify the new account. Well, you get the picture.

      The OLD blog was easy to get into. I will have to see how easy this one will prove, but tonight hasn’t been great…… I am thinking of supporting the Luddite Party.

      I have received Vic’s tweet about me being lost up some Munros (oh, how I wish…) and from Jarkko asking if I intended to return to the blog. The answer was that I always intended to return, but just hadn’t got round to it. I have come back a little earlier than expected, but I am back. In truth I was never really away, certainly not while attending the games at the Riverside.

      I have read Vic’s piece and just a couple of the replies, due to time constraints. I did pick up the issue about where replies might be found..In the “old days” they were always at the end, and newer ones that had been added since the last visit, were always tacked on a the end and were therefore very obvious.

      I have a hospitality package for 8th November (the Bournemouth match) and had been toying with the idea of sending a first post after that. But now that idea is just dust!

      Right: let’s see what happens when I press send (assuming there will be such a bottom when I scroll down there)……

      **AV writes: Add to favourites *Click*….. easy. This is far smoother and more efficient than the old blog and I don’t need to shout at nerds once a week. Welcome back.

      1. So – it does work, then!

        But I reserve the right in the future to harrumph at intervals. And there will be no “thumbs” from me.

        **AV writes: And now I’ve given your e-mail address an Instant Access Tick you won’t even need to wait to have your posts to be ‘approved’. You’ll be addicted again within the week. A few changes though: you can add hyper-links, you can create a little picture ID (via gravatar) and I’ve added the work “cr****t” to the swear filter.

  4. I’m not a fan of the thumbs up/thumbs down. The enjoyment on here is the quality of the debate and the thought that goes into it rather than whether its popular or not. Indeed it is often the unpopular thought that provokes the most debate, reflection and analysis.

    I also agree with Johnny Canuck about having to search for new posts if they are replies to an earlier post and having to start from the top instead of going to where you left off. Its also possible that it inadvertently stifles some debate from the rest of us if we miss a reply to post 16 because we are all reading from the back end at post 32. Maybe numbering the posts may help so we could start with “in reply to post 16 where Ian/PP/Len etc. said…….”?

  5. First of all a big thank you to our host AV for being open to suggestions and giving the Thumbs a try. My thinking was that although I check in every day I don’t always have the time to post and the thumbs would be a quick way of contributing. However this brief experiment has highlighted and served to remind me that it is the considered and thoughtful quality of the posts that make this blog the joy it is. I’m convinced by the argument that anything that threatens the quality of the posts should be resisted and that as the thumbs do so, they should go.

    So it’s a thumbs up to thumbs out from me. Or to put it in the language of the terraces…. Thumbs out! Booooo!

    Again, the amount of humour and intelligence employed in shooting down my idea has been a privilege to read.

    If I have any more bright ideas, I’ll keep them to myself. Probably.

    1. No, don’t do that Croydonboro because in that bright idea there could just be the spark that ignites a debate and that is precisely what the blog is about.

      Thumbs down and out, but keep having bright ideas, they’re the catalyst for debate.


      John R

  6. When I read the comments from inside the dashboard I don’t even notice if the anyone is doing “replies”, I just see them in chronological order. Maybe I could disable them? I’ll have a look. Who knows what else is inside that tool box?

    Any last contributions to the “Thumbs” debate before I flick the switch back? I think it would take a silver-tongued rhetorical tour de force of Mark Antony bury/praise proportions to swing the result now.

    1. Just entertained myself by flicking the thumbs on AVs post endlessly, going through 0-0, 1-0, 0-1 and NOT back to 0-0 cos it won’t let me. Well, that’s 30seconds of my life I won’t get back while watching Dylan Thomas………

  7. I think the reply function is fine, some of us may miss the odd post as a result of it, but it allows a debate within the debate.

  8. Nigel,

    I hear what you say about the “Reply” function allowing a debate within a debate, and if it could be programmed to have a 10 minute lifespan, my own thoughts are that it might be more useful. The problem is though, that when this blog is running at full steam ahead, and it sometimes does, then if you don’t read that post until an hour after it was originally posted, there are often a lot of new posts after it. Unless one has an interest in that particular post or author, it’s unlikely that the replies will be read.

    In the past, we (or in my case, those others who post regularly) have always added comments to the end of the blog and if we are interested enough in the subject, we can search back for the original reference. In some cases I’ve even gone back to AV’s previous blog to find the original post. When that was all that was available, we still used to have a debate within a debate, so the debate hasn’t been stifled.

    To add balance, my opinions are based on my time zone being eight hours ahead of Teesside (and North Yorkshire). In other words, when you lot are sitting down with your single malts, having swilled copious quantities of local ale or merlot from foreign regions at nine o’clock at night, it is still 1:00pm here, and even though the sun is over the yardarm, I have sworn off the drink until 6:00pm.
    It’s now 6:00 am in the UK and the Ben Riach Maderensis Fumosus is tasting very good. Some of you will be stirring your sticks to start the day. Good luck with that. I’m off to bed in a minute or sixty.

  9. Forever –

    Never seen a whale in Dormo, either that or is is a huge mermaid. Anyway, welcome back.

    Back to the reply thing. A few more thoughts. having got a new smooth blog it would be a shame to make it messy, having the posts appear in order of posting allows everyone to join in, you can cover a couple of topics in post, have a couple of threads going at the same time, even talk about football. And I am nosey and dont want to miss anything.

    On to tomorrow and my plans have been scuppered, tickets sold out, elocution lessons wasted. I wonder how many Boro fans have bought tickets amongst home fans? I guess it would be easier if you lived darn sarf, a TS postcode for your address is a bit of a giveaway.

    Sounds like it is going to be a cup tie atmosphere, looking forward to listening.

    1. You say that now, but if knocked off your feet by a barrage of posts from Yours Truly, you might change your mind…… Fingers crossed for 3 points at Rotherham. It is, of course, “nailed on” that Richard Smallwood will play a blinder.

  10. I have to say that I agree with ditching the reply function, it’s pretty easy to indicate which comment you are referring to.

    I follow this blog mainly via I-phone which makes it almost impossible to fathom out where in the thread the comment is supposed to be. As previously mentioned, I would prefer it if the comments where there in order of being posted, then you can read from where you left off with out missing anything.

    It’s a pity there isn’t some kind of thumbs up thingy so that other readers could agree with me, or disagree, as the case may be.

  11. I would agree with ditching the reply function. Let the replier refer back to the post as I am sure most of us go to the last post we read and read downwards after that. Also it is then easier to keep track of everyone’s comments and not miss one.

    I like my daily dose of pessimism and have probably missed a few half empty glasses on the new blog already.

  12. We will get over a ton now! As Boro is two points off the top of the division, we needed domething to whimper about. First the BBC, then the (foam) thumbs and then the absence of Dormo. Plenty of posts.

    Mind, it could be more quiet after tomorrow, though as I will predict a 1-3 win for the mighty Boro. It will be a splendid match with a sell-out crowd and all.

    Up the Boro!

  13. jarkko

    A thumbs up to that.

    We need a good result with Norwich coming up on Tuesday to continue the impetus, I am not bothered about how many canaries get up here but if we can keep to around 17000 Boro fans that would be great.

  14. There was a story about the three players on four bookings at the EG today. So there is something to moan about.

    Our style seems to attract some yellows and hence we will get some suspensions, too. Some of the yellows have been quiet stupid so we must improve.

    Quite a surprise that Albert is one most prolific yellow cars collectors.

    Luckily we have a big squad – and Aitor has used the squad. So we should manage this but it is never ideal.

    Up the Boro!

    **AV writes: I think we are averaging four cards a game at the minute. Albert is getting them because when the opposition break down the flank he quite often ends up tearing after their winger snapping at him and trying to get a grip on him from behind, which is a high risk strategy. If he was more defensive by instinct or more experienced in that role he would get level or in front of them before bringing them down. Reach seems to have grasped the idea and streaks ahead of them them cuts across their path and brings them down in an ‘innocent’ awkward tangle of legs.

  15. Carefully skirting the issue of thumbs and reply buttons, I’ve just read the EG article on Mogga’s appearance on Sky Sports. Quite rightly, his record of signings is highlighted and it quotes ‘Grant Leadbitter, Dean Whitehead, Albert Adomah, Dimi Konstantopoulos and George Friend, all key members of the first team squad, were signed by Mowbray’.

    At the risk of sounding bitter and twisted, I must point out that he signed far more duds than good ‘uns. I also feel compelled to point out that even the above players are all playing much better than they did under Mogga. That’s nothing to with budgets but everything to do with a manger’s ability to get the best out of individuals and to set up a team to get the best out of players collectively.

    Anyway, if he signed half a team of ‘key members of the first team squad’, why didn’t we do better than we did? Revisionist history is one thing; this is another. As I said at the time, with Mogga’s team, the whole was less than the sum of the parts.

    **AV writes: “If he signed half a team of ‘key members of the first team squad’, why didn’t we do better than we did?” Would it be because of the other half?

  16. **AV writes: “If he signed half a team of ‘key members of the first team squad’, why didn’t we do better than we did?” Would it be because of the other half?

    The other half being the spuds that he bought.

    **AV writes: Maybe. Or inherited. That’s an occupational hazard for managers at all levels.

  17. OK, I get it! There are many people on here who don’t rate Tony Mowbray. What I can’t grasp, given that the legacy he left behind was a squad that needed some financial support to make (hopefully) a promotion push, several players worth far more than the pittance he paid for them and more importantly that he is one of us, is why are people continuing to give him a shoeing at any opportunity?

    Give him a break, haven’t we got a collective axe to grind with Raich Carter? What about Wilf Gillow squandering the talent of Wilf Mannion, oh its all well and good apologists blaming the intervention of Herr Hitler but that just smacks of excuses to a hardnosed realist like me.

    If we are going to harbour grudges, a bit of variety, please…

  18. I have nothing against Tony Mowbray, he is just one of a long line of Boro managers. It didn’t work out for him. But let’s not let this “One of us” cloud the issue. If you want to bestow Sainthood an an ex manager who failed with their hands tied behind their backs, what about Willie Maddren? And as for this keeping a low profile before getting back in to the managerial shop window, that’s probably more down to the fact that the club were still paying him handsomely.

    As has often been said, there’s no room for sentiment in football.

  19. All the duds that Mogga signed added up together wages AND fees wouldn’t add up to one Scott McDonald. Or even one Kevin Thomson. That was his main problem. Saddled with with expensive wasters. Not saying he was the best manager we’ve ever had or that he is ecxempt from stick because he is local but if you don’t see that he was lumbered with Strachan’s deadweights you can’t make a fair judgment.

  20. AV

    Or we could employ the barca method and foul higher up the pitch by rotation.

    **AV writes: I think it is part of the plan to do that (or at least on the halfway line as you tend not to get cards) but we haven’t got it down pat yet and don’t do it with the relentless efficiency of some of the Spanish sides.

    Is that the ton up by the way? I think it is. Trabby-tastic!

  21. Neil

    The problem is that all the players and wages that Strachan spent didn’t even add up to two thirds of an Alves.

    We can on forever debating this until the 100, 200, 300 posts come up.

    Let’s just leave him as a hero.

    1. Let’s all agree – Mogga will always be a playing hero, and without his initial managerial input we were at risk of relegation to tier 3, but towards the end our ship was listing very heavily and the rocks were looming ahead again. As for all the money spent to buy Alves (and pay his wages)…..diverted into the economy of Greece we might have staved off the economic crisis that engulfed the western world.

  22. AV

    Maybe we will see the return of Sir Henry?

    **AV writes: Well I believe m’learned friend is available once more to adjudicate but may take a while to get up to speed with the new technology.

    1. Ian – are you greedy? Four posts in succession. And it was just a Trabant.

      Len did it also once so we must temp not to post multible posts to get the coveted reward. One at a time I think is fair. But I might be old school …

      Up the Boro!

  23. My point Ian is that I really think it time to put the Mogga argument to bed. People who supported him will continue to do so, people who either didn’t from the start or who lost patience/faith with him in the end will equally continue to do so but with the added satisfaction of knowing that they got what they felt was best for the club

    I think its fairly obvious where my sympathies lie although, GHW, I’ve reread my post a couple of times and can’t find the bit where I’ve called for his canonisation, mentioned a low profile or implied superior worth to any other manager, but I just think that this subject has been done to death, and I simply don’t see why people feel this need to to bring it up at every opportunity?

    Is it just to advertise for their own perspicacity or is there something deeper? Was Mogga perhaps a serial bicycle thief in his youth and this is a chance for posters to wreak revenge for this or some other childhood offence? I just don’t get it.

    The “one of our own point” wasn’t offered up in defence of his managerial record, just an observation that perhaps with the verdict delivered on Tony Mowbray the manager, we could afford to be a little kinder to Tony Mowbray the man and move on.

  24. Moving the conversation on to tomorrow’s game I reckon Typical Boro will get beat but then beat Norwich on Tuesday night.

    “Boro in a crisis of confidence as Dormo Destroyer sinks Boro!”

    Mogga to blame at New York as his signings George Friend and Grant Leadbitter both get sent off and Dimi lets one squirm underneath him.

    Then onto Tuesday “Boro choke the Canaries” as Deano hits a last minute toe poke, but Mogga still to blame because if he had given youth a chance Richie would have still been here and not scored for Rotherham plus we would be a point better off and the Berlin Wall may still be intact and Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his missus wouldn’t have been shot as it was rumored that it was Mogga’s great grandfather’s auntie’s niece’s second cousin was a tea lady in a nearby Sarajevo restaurant and failed to stop the assassination with her silver salver.

    1. Redcar Red,

      Now, I’ve heard of conspiracy theories too, RR, but can I have some of whatever it is that you are drinking, please?

      Boro won’t lose to an alliteration. Or will they? Boro to win 1 – 3.

      Then, on Tuesday Boro will win again. This Canary is dead, deceased. Tuesday’s match isn’t even mentioned in today’s Eastern Daily Press, it’s all Norwich v Bolton so, as the AV saying goes ‘we are under the radar’.


      John R

  25. You know it’s time for another game of footie when the Mogga v’s ‘other managers’ debate pops up. I might lobby the Football League to have two matches a week every week to stop it happening!

  26. Wiggys mate –

    The reason I want the topic dropped is that if we keep posting the entrenched views come out.

    If you say look at the legacy he was left by Strachan it is then fair to say the same legacy was left at Celtic and it was a disaster,

    That is why it just needs to lie, if it is brought up counter arguements come in to to play and contrary views keep getting aired.

    You cant just say it was all x’s fault and airbrush previous history.

    1. Ian,
      If you read my firste sentance, I am saying precisely the same thing if for a slightly reason. Time to move forward.

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