When the Premier League was born, I at once christened it The Greed Is Good League, and have never seen any good reason to change my mind.
So perhaps in an abysmal and nauseating way, Big Sam Allardyce, England manager – pro tem – is an all too appropriate figure for that job. The very embodiment of greed. That a man already earning over £3million a year, the largest salary of any international manager in the game, should pursue another £400,000 with a fictitious entity surely shows greed far in excess of the late Don Revie. Another disgraced England manager described in the High Court as greedy and dishonest by the judge, though Revie won his case, owing to the intransigent behaviour of the FA’s domineering chairman, the scientist Sir Harold Thompson.
Allardyce, alas, emerges from these bleak revelations as a voracious lout. He makes cheap fun of his predecessor Roy Hodgson who may have made a poor job of running the England team in the recent Euro 2016 finals, but is the embodiment of decency, and in his long largely distinguished career has achieved far more than Allardyce, for all his bombast, ever has.
And when push came to shove, what did Allardyce himself achieve in his one match in charge of England so far? A pitifully meagre win right at the death against a modest Slovakia team reduced to ten men for the majority of the match.
Allardyce’s cynicism is as repugnant as his greed. And what pray as a club manager did he ever truly achieve? He was never in charge of a major club other than Newcastle United, where he failed. His achievements were limited to steering struggling clubs out of trouble. Laughably, he has boasted that he should have been in charge of Inter or Real Madrid. Delusions of grandeur?
Plainly he must go from his England role as quickly as possible, but who would replace him? Ask me another. The cupboard so far as England managers are concerned is pitifully bare. But getting rid of Allardyce himself would at least banish the present miasma.