The rich man in his castle (Chateau Keane, Chateau Bruce?), Pete Sixsmith at his gate …
While sitting in my kitchen chair, quaffing a cup of Ringtons finest and polishing off my morning porridge, my attention was drawnto a Guardian headline “What a week for Hodgson”.
In it, they looked at his appointment as England manager, something of which I approve, his mocking at the hands of The Sun, giving lefty liberals like me yet another reason to wish for the demise of Murdoch and all that he surveys, the tepid approval of the current crop of England players, who presumably know that they are going to be found out and booted out and his appearance on the rich list of football managers.
This was culled from the Sunday Times Rich List, which, as I am sure you will understand, is compulsory reading here at Sixsmith Towers.
I searched in vain for M Salut’s name this year, after the vast fortune he has made flogging mugs and pens via the site, but I did notice that Mike Ashley and Steve Gibson figured quite prominently, despite wasting their money on knackered out football clubs.
There are some interesting names on the managers’ list. Fergie is top (had he not been, he would have demanded the journalist responsible be given extra time to finish it) as are Wenger, Mancini and, despite having paid his taxes, Good ol’ ‘Arry. But it was nos 2 and 7 that caught my attention.
Sitting a mere £8m behind the purple faced maestro of Old Trafford is one Roy Maurice Keane, with an estimated fortune of £29m. Seeing as this is but a tiny fraction of what he p***** away on such talents as Anthony Stokes, Paul McShane and El Hadj-Diouf, maybe he could perhaps redistribute some of it back into the football club so the current manager can reinvest it.
After an even bigger failure at Ipswich, I wondered how he and Mrs K would keep the wolf from the door. Along came ITV with a handful of bawbees to get him to sit alongside Mr Anodyne (aka Gareth Southgate) and tear into teams on FA Cup day and on Champions League nights.
Clearly, with such a paltry fortune compared to his former mentor, he needs the cash and principles like “You’ll never catch me pontificating on TV panels” go out of the window when it’s a question of paying the school fees or buying that must-have new gold plated lead for the dog.
When Steve Bruce was ejected from the hot seat, he said he found it difficult to go into his local pub, The Rich B******’S Arms at Darras Hall, because he was embarrassed by the way things had turned out.
He had been sacked, he said, because he came from Corbridge and then Wallsend and he had been to the Sports Direct Arena as a lad. Sunderland fans had been totally beastly to him and it was nothing to do withhis dire home record (3 wins in a calendar year) and his abject failure to turnout a team that could stand up to his boyhood heroes.
I had a little sympathy for him (about as much as I will have for The Eton Mafia when they are turned out of Downing Street) but that disappeared when I saw that he has an estimated fortune of £14m.
That means that he could have bought Connor Whickham and Craig Gardner out of his own pocket and still had enough loose change to buy around of drinks for his Darras Hall mates. Sympathy is now fully evaporated.
It’s difficult to believe how managers can become so wealthy.
Alan Brown used to drive an E-type Jag in his second stint at Roker Park, but I don’t recollect seeing him on any rich lists. In fact, I can think of few men who were as austere as The Bomber, a man I was reminded of when I heard George Herd bellowing out instructions to the Ryhope CA team as they won thelast Northern League game of the season against Dunston last night. At 74, there is no weakening of the lungs or love of the game for George.
For those interested, the 200 games for the season is on and should be reached at the SoL when Manchester United and bloated plutocrat SAF come calling. Saturday also gives me the chance to complete my Scottish set with a visit to Bayview, home of East Fife, thanks to John Penman kindly offering to drive me there from Kirkcaldy.
And then, there is the 4.30 rising time for Fulham on Sunday. This had better be good, Martin……………………………………………………………………