Sunday, January 15, 2006
Lee Hendrie for Aston Villa (vs West Ham United), 15 January 2006
Aston Villa fans must have been delighted to discover this morning that Sven has been busy touting their club to apparently wealthy Sheikhs in Dubai. The good news for the FA and for all England fans is that apparently Sven wouldn't dream of walking out on his £4.2m a year contract to manage England until after the World Cup (he is under contract until 2008). After the World Cup he would be available for the simple matter of £5m net and a three year contract.
£15m to manage Aston Villa? Is he mad? Surely that's not enough? I'd want double that.
Ah. But Sven has a plan: his best pal David Beckham is apparently itching for a way to leave Real Madrid and return to the Premiership. A London club would be ideal, naturally, but Sven was confident that he would be able to convince DB that Birmingham was as close to Beckingham Palace as London, if not closer. He then offered to ring up the England captain on the spot to sound him out.
Sound enticing? The Sven and David Beckham dream team at Villa Park?
No. It doesn't to me either (and to be honest I'm struggling to see someone of David Beckham's gargantuan opinion of his own brilliance contemplating playing for the claret and blue. By 'London club', I'm pretty sure he'll imagine Arsenal or Chelsea. Or maybe AC Milan. That's just outside the M25, isn't it?)
That's not all the information that a few glasses of champagne managed to extract from Sven.... apparently Wayne Rooney grew up in a very rough area, Michael Owen wasn't that keen on going to Newcastle but they offered him a shitheap of money and *gasp* Rio Ferdinand is a bit lazy.
No shit Sherlock.
It would clearly be ridiculous and counter-productive of the FA sack this clown in a World Cup year, but it surely has to be a question of when now. I have some sympathy with him over the intrusions into his private life by the tabloid press, but to be so openly disloyal to his employers - at least twice - is surely too much.
Then again, in showing such a total disregard for the small matter of his contract, is Sven really behaving any differently to anyone else in football?
Of course, if he comes back in July with the World Cup trophy, I'm sure all will be forgiven.
On an almost completely different subject, whilst watching Match of the Day last night, I was struck how much the current incumbent in the dugout at Villa Park has put on a bit of weight recently and is starting to look like a gerbil. Or is it just me? These pictures are from 1976 and 2006 respectively.... what do you think?
Maybe he always has?