Yesterday, I watched one depressing screen play followed by another.
The similarities uncanny.
One was a game witnessed between two teams deemed to be on a similar level to one another, whilst the other was a fictional screenplay with the lead character hiding behind the face paint and make-up of a clown.
After watching the Newcastle United game where we were outfought, outplayed and more importantly, outscored, by Leicester. It was crazy to think that when watching an Oscar award winning film about mental illness (where depression is a major factor), it was Joaquin Phoenix’s character which neared the resemblance of a team of 11 men on a sports pitch.
Our side looks like it has been punched, kicked and mentally tortured to believe that the best way of winning a football match, is to sit with 10 (sometimes 11) men behind a ball and soak up as much pressure or abuse as it can handle, for as long as possible, in the HOPE that maybe a mistake will be made by others to give us an opportunity to score a goal ourselves.
At times, it seems our manager will look to our players’ strengths and do the opposite.
We will play the long ball to a lone man up front with no support due to us being so deep, we will play wingers as full-backs, we will play two in the centre of midfield against a team who will swamp all over us, we will play three big men at CB against a lone striker and when the team does get up the pitch, we will get the same CBs to take throw ins because that is what CBs should do!
The Joker was at SJP this Sunday (Newcastle United and its fans), who take a physical and mental beating week in week out, in more ways than one. Off the pitch, we are abused by the EPL (the Gotham politicians) who deem that despite evidence presented to them and a business plan put to them, that NUFC aren’t a cause worth saving (From Thomas Wayne (MA) and its poor business/strategic plan of being in a competition to survive) and moving the club forwards. The fear shown by the EPL is what has been put to them by the so called big six, of the other teams around them and that they are scared at the force to which they could become. Change is not good for these guys or the media rights holders in the Far East as who likes competition? Especially, wealthy competition.
The same can be shown also on the pitch, as we have a real life pantomime villain in Steve Bruce. As I pointed to earlier, this character will suck all confidence out of a team and its players, tell them to play negatively, witness substandard performances as a result of his own tactics yet fail to amend his own mistakes. He will never admit to getting things wrong himself, he will never say he made mistakes in the team selection, strategy or tactics as he has done for many years and as a result the team lost the game accordingly. His claim to fame was he played for Man Utd during the glory years under Sir Alex so that makes him a good manager in his own right.
This weekend’s opposition was Leicester City, who only a few years back were crowned Champions of the Premier League. Whilst awake at 3.30am this morning it occurred to me the importance of appointing the right man to lead a team, nation or fictional city.
Leicester City won the league with players such as Wes Morgan, Robert Huth, Ritchie De Laet, Danny Simpson (deemed not good enough for us) Christian Fuchs, Matty James, Marc Albrighton, Jeffery Schlupp, Nathan Dyer, Shinji Okazaki and Leonardo Ulloa to name a few. There were notable others who also wore blue that season but do you think Steve Bruce would have won the league for Leicester City that season with the same squad of players?
Or, do you think he would have told them, “we haven’t spent the money so we can’t match them on the field, we need to sit deep, don’t pressure the opposition, let’s wait for them to make a mistake because that is all we are good enough to do!”
Would Steve Bruce have a managerial medal round his neck if he had been Leicester manager in May 2016…?
Being a manager, of any sort, is being able to bring out the best in individuals and the team to which they are in, so they can perform in whatever aspect they are expected to get results in. The idea is not to mentally or physically overpower individuals or a team to tell them they are not as good as the rivals, opposition or good enough to perform to a decent standard or to over achieve.
There is an issue at NUFC, which comes from the very top, that survival is the only expectation. This in itself is the root cause of all our issues and to which the cameras were pointed at The Joker (Joaquin Phoenix) and the directors/story tellers said, “Play someone who has had nothing given to him in the way of support, nurturing or guidance. Your only objective is to survive and whatever comes as a result, that will be fine.”
That is what is being given to the players and fans of Newcastle United at present. There is no one in Gotham looking out for us now or in the future. We have no one at the club who wants us to achieve or grow. We are The “Joker” or even worse “Super rats” of Gotham and there is no Batman coming to save us anytime soon!!!!
Will there be a sequel? Only time will tell but for now, Steve Bruce is the only Oscar winner for his acting of being a manager of any sort.