Vital Football

Latest Watford FC News

Midweek Memoirs of Mr Bodell #2

Midweek Memoirs of Mr Bodell #2
Firstly, congratulations if you managed to read the entire of last weeks Midweek Memoirs-I had a lot to get off my chest before the beginning of the season. Since then, little has happened, Bouazza has departed for Fulham who lost on his debut whilst Jordan Stewart has got his first for the club, in the right net, in our first win of the season. A productive weekend all round I think. What would really cap it off nicely would be the calling up of Darius Henderson to replace the injured Rooney against Germany. Sadly, as even Aidy doesn`t fancy Hendo to do a job any more, will McClaren? No. Still good old 16.5 million man Darren Bent (left on the bench at Sunderland and Everton) can play, never mind Crouchy! 'Round up of football news`? TICK.

Moving on-baffling decisions and departures. All part of an ordinary day at Tyncastle, Hearts. Yes, this week I want to tackle the subject of club ownership, and, quite frankly if I could tackle it in reality with one of my trademark studs-up leaps, I would, but I can`t so I`m just going to be brutal in my honesty instead.

Romanov is by no means the only club owner in the UK with a bit of history to his name. (Remember folks, this is all how I see it, and nothing is gospel). There`s the Glazer clan at Manchester United, Abramovich at Chelsea and many, many others…in fact, in my whole hearted opinion, every single foreign sugar daddy to have graced the Premiership-or any other division in the UK is doing the English national side a huge disservice.

Why? Asks the puzzled reader. A simple chain reaction is my simple reply. Try to follow:

1. "NOOOO! I don`t want him coming in!" The foreign owner arrives at your club, buying out the long-standing, stable, sensible shareholders who are fooled that he won`t spend his rupees on ridiculous wages for past-it players. The fans are usually opposed to the arrival too…

2. "I always said this fella was the one to take us forward" Now safely in charge of the club as the majority shareholder, Mr Vassilikarakisson makes sure no members of the original board or shareholders remain so he can begin his ruthless/lavish stint in charge. As the latter is most popular, Mr Vassilikarakisson spends ridiculous money on players from countries no-one has ever heard of. They do pay off however.

3. "NOOOO! I said he would be bad!" However, the love affair eventually ends because people like me, fans of clubs too unattractive to foreign investment, point out how bad this is for the (A) English national side and the (B) English game.

(N.B: Mr 'Vassilikarakisson` doesn`t exist, and if he does, apologies for blemishing your good name.)

The English game has shot itself in the foot repeatedly over the years, however, of late the influx of foreign owners has brought a subsequent influx of foreign players. Just look at Manchester City, the only English thing there is Darius Vassell-hardly something to boast about! Because of the greed of many club owners English players or at least those based in England have become ridiculously overpriced in the last five years or so. For example Ashley Young, is he really worth 9 million? No. Is Darren Bent 500k better than Thierry Henry? No way. With this ridiculous overpricing of English and English based players, a gap in the market is created for foreign clubs to sell people like Sven Goran Eriksson their players.

Thus this arrival of players from clubs, let alone countries that no-one has ever heard of drives out the few English players still plying their trade in the Premiership. Some may go abroad, some drop down levels, the most talented of course stay put and fight. But the point is a lot are forced out of the reckoning. With a lack of pitch time and a lack of fitness comes a loss in self-belief, which in turn affects the actual ability of the player in question. Consequently they find themselves forced out the international reckoning whilst some donkey who manages to play occasionally miserably gets pelters whilst playing badly for England.

One of the best examples I can produce is Jermain Defoe. Until the arrival of Dimitar Berbatov and to an extent, Mido, Defoe was a regular starter at Spurs, a regular scorer and frequently a member of the England squad. However, Berbatov`s arrival forces his out and now it`s a rarity to see Defoe in an England shirt. He may play in the upcoming qualifiers but I would be prepared to bet that Darren Bent will get the nod ahead of him.

So that is the influence of foreign ownership on the English national side. Of course, not every foreign owner to buy an English club will go out and spend their millions on players from other leagues. Indeed, not every foreign investor will splash their millions-look at Randy Lerner, he has by no means made Villa the Chelsea of the Midlands-and, in my opinion, good on him.

Unfortunately, it`s not just Steve McClaren`s men that are affected by this new culture of foreign ownership. The Premiership (I say Premiership because the majority of owners are foreign there), is also hugely affected by the chairman that sell up to a man whose made his mint in dodgy business abroad.

First and foremost, foreign players are very different from English players. They play at a much slower pace they are much less honest. For example, the majority of foreign players dive, or 'simulate` fouls in order to win a free kick or earn the opposition a booking. Of course, English players are by no means saints; Joe Cole is a pretty nifty diver, as is Steve Kabba (see his dive to win a penalty at Wolves). English players, playing for English clubs are also going to display more passion and put in more effort, possibly for their team of childhood allegiance or simply because they understand how much fans of their club would want to don the shirt each week. This is one of the main reasons I question Tamas Priskin, will he be up for a December afternoon in Essex? I doubt it somehow.

Finally, foreign investment pumps up the cost of football for the honest, genuine, hard-working fans like you and I. We don`t want to pay extra for our season tickets just to watch a bunch of foreign ponces with alice bands and gloves roll around when we could pay less to watch a passionate hard fought match in the league below, who would?

For those of you that have the question 'Would I support Watford if an Abramovich-esque owner took over?` The answer would be a firm no. Maybe I`m not as commited to the club through thick, but I certainly am through thin.

Keep the faith,

Tom Bodell

Writer:wfc123
Date:Wednesday August 15 2007
Time: 10:05AM

Best of Vital Network

Login to post a comment

Recent Watford Articles

Deeney Speculation & Leicester Won't End

With Troy Deeney having his say on the many rumours and figures being bandied around, along with talk of a new deal from Watford given Leicester's reported interest...

Are Players Set For A Football Exit?

With the country narrowly voting to leave the European Union in Thursday's Referendum, there are certainly plenty of real questions that have to be addressed in terms...

Watford Latest Linked With Newcastle's Townsend

The Mirror has reported Watford have joined Crystal Palace, West Brom, West Ham & Southampton in having an interest in Newcastle's Andros Townsend?

Ighalo's Olympic Involvement In Doubt?

Ighalo has been selected as an overage Nigeria player going to Brazil for the Rio Olympic Games, however after being persuaded to take part this could be blocked by Watford.

Archived Vital Watford Articles

Vital Watford articles from

Site Journalists

Harry Welch
Editor email
Profile
KDCallanan
no email
Profile
chrisgwfc
no email
Profile
Colin Cowan
no email
Profile
Alex Moore
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Sunderland MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Gomes13%
Cathcart0%
Prodl0%
Britos1%
Ake2%
Abdi23%
Guedioura0%
Watson1%
Jurado1%
Ighalo2%
Deeney54%
Sub - Paredes1%
Sub - Suarez1%
Sub - Amrabat1%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Leicester City 38 23 12 3 81 32
2 Arsenal 38 20 11 7 71 29
3 Spurs 38 19 13 6 70 34
4 Man City 38 19 9 10 66 30
5 Man Utd 38 19 9 10 66 14
6 Southampton 38 18 9 11 63 18
7 West Ham 38 16 14 8 62 14
8 Liverpool 38 16 12 10 60 13
9 Stoke 38 14 9 15 51 -14
10 Chelsea 38 12 14 12 50 6
11 Everton 38 11 14 13 47 4
12 Swansea 38 12 11 15 47 -10
13 Watford 38 12 9 17 45 -10
14 WBA 38 10 13 15 43 -14
15 Crystal Palace 38 11 9 18 42 -12
16 AFC Bournemouth 38 11 9 18 42 -22
17 Sunderland 38 9 12 17 39 -14
R Newcastle 38 9 10 19 37 -21
R Norwich 38 9 7 22 34 -28
R Aston Villa 38 3 8 27 17 -49
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Watford Results (view all)

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.ANDY7101