“It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.”
So, what is it about football managers that means they have a habit of saying the wrong thing?
There’s nothing more entertaining for an opposition fan than another manager saying something so ridiculous, it’s obvious the side has a loon at the helm.
Of course for every Paolo di Canio where the Chairman of the club may just as well put a wasps’ nest in the changing room and told the players to poke it with a stick, there’s a Steve Bruce, whose insistence on ‘loyalty’ from his players has a rather ironic twist given his own nomadic career.
It’s fairly easy to find quotes from managers that just reinforce a stereotype or a pop culture view of them. Sam Allardyce managed to reinforce the popular view of a man who overestimates his own ability. Famously he boasted to a press conference whilst manager of Blackburn that
“I’m not suited to Bolton or Blackburn, I would be more suited to Internazionale or Real Madrid. It wouldn’t be a problem to me to go and manage those clubs because I would win the Double or the league every time.
Give me Manchester United or Chelsea and I would do the same, it wouldn’t be a problem. It’s not where I’m suited to, it’s just where I’ve been for most of the time. It’s not a problem to take me into the higher reaches of the Champions League or Premier League and would make my job a lot easier in winning it.”
Sam Allardyce’s managerial career inspired a satirical Twitter character “The Big Sam”, whose robust but hilarious adventures actually managed to soften people’s attitudes to the real thing. So what did the real Sam do? Have “The Big Sam” removed from Twitter. The resulting backlash from fans of the account and the media was a huge backfire for the real Sam Allardyce. All it did was seem to confirm the notion that Allardyce took himself far too seriously.
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