TIMING TIMING TIMING - AND PLG
They say that in life (and particularly in comedy) timing is everything and I must confess that was the thought uppermost in my mind as I read the latest edition of the zine. I should probably point out that my copy arrived from GS the day after Le Guen left the building, so reading many of the articles stating he should be given more time brought a wry smile to my lips, the reasons will become clear later. It will come as no surprise whatsoever to anyone who read by rant following the CIS defeat that I was glad he had gone.
Now let's get one thing straight here, nothing would have given me more pleasure than to be writing here today that I was eating my words and that PLG had turned the whole thing round because that would have meant the Rangers were doing a lot better and that is what we all want. I am not going to recap everything that's happened since early November, we all know since then we've qualified top of the group for the KO stages of the UEFA Cup. We also know that after the dreadful display at home to Dunfermline which we did win that we went on an improving run both in terms of quality of play and results.
Our first mini revival was stopped dead at Falkirk where the dreadful conditions were best handled by a 38yr old from Trinidad, once again our inability to compete was evident and I was once more screaming for the managers head. We then hit arguably our best spell under the beleaguered PLG, the low of Falkirk was replaced by the high of Hibs where we romped it and off we set on our third lap having turned the corner again. Good performances against THEM and away to the Sheep started having me thinking, what with Christmas spirit coursing through me that maybe just maybe I was being a little harsh on the manager. Inverness was I thought for me the final straw, losing to them once is careless to lose twice in a season is criminal and the Mint should've booted him the next day, but that's not the Rangers way is it as many stated in the last mag?
Well people you reap what you sow and we finished the year with another absolutely dismal performance and then what a way to welcome in 2007. Our captain, our best player by a mile is dropped for the Well game, stripped of the captaincy and is told by PLG that he won't play under him again. To say I went ballistic when I heard the news is a massive understatement, although I was eagerly awaiting the full litany of crimes and insubordination that caused the manager to take such a decision since no one is bigger than the club, but no surprises I was firmly in the Ferguson camp here.
Now I know that pub talk is not representative of overall opinion but in my little stretch of Partick the split was roughly 100% to 0% in favour of Baz. I was astounded to receive a text from a friend stating that a lot of the posters on the message board were supporting Le Guen. This is where my wry smile (sic) came from, given that no reason for this action had been detailed by PLG there are only two reasons why people would be supporting him in such a manner.
Firstly the anti Fergie brigade who never forgave him for going to Blackburn and still don't like him, they were happy to say it must be his fault so back PLG. (Just as a wee aside, maybe one of you can explain why you don't rate him even when he is clearly our best player, I'm not saying you have to hug him to your bosom, merely be honest about his performances on the park).
My real gripe is with you other lot, the blind I won't think for myself brigade. Along with the rest of us you swallowed the hype when he was appointed and planted your jacket (as I did) on the PLG coat peg yet despite all the evidence to the contrary refused to accept that he was a busted flush and it was time for a new deck. The usual give him time excuses I can handle but the irony of no man is bigger than the club was lost as you trotted this out as a reason why a man who was single handedly destroying the club was right and why a real Rangers man should be sacrificed. I would remind you that at this time PLG had not given any detailed reasons but you were supporting him anyway. Well I hope you choked on your drinks the next day with his pre and post match interviews. For a manager to admit he was putting a less talented team on the park but thought it was best for the team had me spitting feathers, football genius, God help us! It was clear at the game that the support was split on the issue, whilst almost everyone belted out the Captains name there was a chorus of boos to the chants of PLG get Tea F *ck. I have said quite enough on this now other than that I was seriously considering boycotting the team while PLG was there. Thankfully Le Guen is now Le Gone and things can hopefully move forward, although the Cup tie at East end showed the playing side problems remain big style.
So what about the new management team? Well I did say that the next manager had to be one of us and if cut had to bleed Rangers and there is no doubt Walter fits that bill. I have got to say that my relief at the departure of the Frenchman is tempered slightly by my belief that turning the clock back doesn't work with players or managers returning to the scenes of past glories rarely reproducing the goods. I do believe the selection of Sally as his assistant is a master stroke and despite his long association with the scum KMcD has a good reputation and will ensure the first team gives their all at training.
I sincerely hope this return works and that we stabilise the ship and finish strongly in the league and well out in second place (barring some unforeseen collapse by the Scum). A couple more wins in Europe would be a nice distraction but stabilisation at home is the priority. Rodriguez has gone and maybe some others will follow over the next three weeks but it is on who will come in to join Webster (crocked already for fox sake!) that will be of more interest to most of us.
Yours waking up from the nightmare.