(Other than that, everything’s ok)

GREAT GRANDAD SHOUTY looks at the big (Sam) picture

Well, its been a fine old week, hasn’t it? Arising out of all the goings-on, its obvious that the FA, as presently constituted, have forfeited the right to be the guardians of the game of football.

That being so, what is to be done? The one thing we should avoid is to let politicians get involved; after all, expenses fiddles on their part show they’re not the people to tell others what to do. I’m also against the idea of a government – appointed regulator. In other areas of our national life, regulators have shown some weakness and the undertakings they’re supposed to regulate sometimes run rings round them. There’s always the danger that regulators can become too close to the people they’re supposed to regulate – so far as football is concerned, I can see regulators being showered with hospitality and free tickets. A cynical old fool aren’t I?

My solution is drastic. The activities of The FA and Premier League should be suspended and placed in the hands of a three person panel – appointed on a voluntary basis or through legislation. The panel could be presided over by a retired High Court judge and be composed of a senior retired police officer and one other. I suppose the retired police officer could be drawn from the ranks of the FBI; after all, they were the ones who dug up all the stench surrounding FIFA. Not sure about the third member – definitely not a retired banker!

The panel’s job would be to sort out everything that’s wrong with the game of football with no time limit set on their activities. Their job could include examining every transfer into the Premier League and could also extend to pricing and programming of games. Drastic – but necessary. The beauty of the panel is that they wouldn’t be under the control of anybody and would be genuinely independent.
"only three clubs have scored more goals than Pools but only Yeovil (19) have conceded a greater number."

What about the Football League? There are obviously clubs in The Championship who would like to get their snouts in the trough; as things are, though, most of the scandals arise from Premier League transactions. The biggest crime of the Football League is inefficiency and nothing is more obvious than the Checkatrade Trophy. As cock-ups go, this was monumental and fan boycotts seem to be the order of the day. Looking through the games played on 30th August, seven games had gates of less than a thousand. Fleetwood achieved a grand total of 392; Accrington 585; and Wimbledon managed 461 – there’d be more stewards and police than fans. Even at Pools, there’s talk of boycotting the games and donating the price of the tickets to the club.

So far as I could see the JPT Trophy had a reasonable structure – why bother changing it? I remember last season’s JPT tie against Sheffield United. A good turn out from Blades’ supporters and a game that went to the wire with a penalty shoot out. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Thank our lucky stars the proposals for re-organising the Football League have been dropped. I love the atmosphere of League Two. In most cases, there’s a bond between the fans who love supporting smaller clubs and I like the idea of announcing the number of visiting fans who travel to The Vic and the subsequent appreciation from Poolies. Quite a few hardened souls who make the trip from a long way away – particularly the 55 who came up from Newport. Just think of it, those 55 certainly were entertained.

Once again, Pools have the good and the bad. After the Grimsby game, only three clubs have scored more goals than Pools but only Yeovil (19) have conceded a greater number. One of the problems is that we seem to have a sick parade (throw in the odd suspension) of centre halves. Let’s hope that we can sort this out.

Nathan Thomas seems to enjoy away trips and I suppose its all about the extra freedom he gets away from home. With the home teams being more attack minded, Thomas gets the necessary freedom to torment opposing defences. At home, opposing defences are much tighter hence less freedom. Still, with two good results against high flying Plymouth and Luton it can’t be all that bad.
Hope we don’t have to wait to long for a home win!

The sad death of former Arsenal and Manchester United striker, David Herd, at the age of 82, brought to mind a little bit of Pools history. In the final game of the 1950-51 season Pools played an away game at Stockport County. Included in Stockport's line up was father and son - Alex and David Herd. Stockport won 2-0 with David Herd scoring both goals. RIP.

Finally, something to be complimentary about and it concerns the compassion shown to Bradley Lowery by Sunderland and Everton. The Merseyside club’s donation of £200,000 towards getting life saving treatment for his cancer restored the faith in human nature. Well done, Sunderland and Everton!