Picture the scene. My plane lands at Washington. I’m tired and irritable after seemingly endless queues at Heathrow and then an 8 hour flight in which I couldn’t listen to my iPod because I had lost it. I finally get a signal on my Blackberry while standing up in one of those terrible buses on stilts which Washington airport uses. The emails alerts start coming through thick and fast. I whisper a quiet “fuck me gently” to myself as I see the score. Not exactly the thing to perk me up and rid me of jetlag.
It’s now Sunday morning in Washington and I have just listended to Curbishley’s Match of the Day interview. If I wasn;t already convinced that he isn;t the manager for us, that interview did it. He said at the end “I haven’t enjoyed a single minute of this job, not a single minute.” Well fuck right off then. What we need is someone who can motivate not just the players but the fans too. At least Pardew did the latter, if not the former.
I can see no way out for us now. We have a bunch of players who are not playing for each other. I’m reading a season diary by Iwan Roberts, the former Norwich striker at the moment. A very good way of wiling away 8 hours on a plane. He describes the team spirit in the Norwich team in their championship winning season of 2003-4. That’s what we need now. Trouble is we have too many big time Charlies.
On the West Ham mailing list someone has identified 18 players who they reckon will be off if we go down. Half of them I’d happily despatch. We now need to build a time of fighters. I never thought I would write about Peter Mandelson on this blog, but do you remember his 2001 victory speech on General Election night when he screamed (in more ways than one) “I’m a fighter, not a quitter”. Well we need a few of those now, and there don’t seem to be many around.