There’s only one subject worth talking about tonight, and I don’t mean the 5-0 stuffing of Vile either (might do a report on it tomorrow, though in truth I probably won’t).
If you haven’t read the Official Site, I suggest you do so before you come back here. Done that? Good.
[SW19 note: interestingly enough, this statement does not appear on the OS’s archives. However, it is still available here on the WISA site. I believe that the “representations” were payments to players that Eames promised but the club never authorised]
OK, these are my initial thoughts which may change later : this is without doubt the strongest statement I have EVER heard, certainly at AFCW. I’m not going to comment on the statement(s) themselves, you can read them for yourself. However, as I’ve been saying on the site guestbook (what? You mean you don’t read it?) the club *MUST* have got this correct. Saying phrases like “intentionally told clear and direct untruths” in a statement is something that must be legally watertight. In fact, I will go so far as to say that this has to outdo any legal statement in its watertightness than ever before. Because if it isn’t, if AFCW have misjudged this, TE is bound to sue under defamation of character. And that could be costly to the club.
The reasoning is “gross misconduct”, which obviously isn’t something to be taken lightly. The reasons as listed in the OS statement seem to tie up with Anne Eames’ postings (again, check the SW19 guestbook), though naturally enough different sides are taken. Obviously, I can’t comment on what he did do, or didn’t do, and my own personal feelings at this time is that lessons must be learnt. Not in a hand wringing way either, but seriously MUST be learnt. It seems that internal communications within the club could and should be better, if a similar situation happens again then I don’t think it will be quite so easy. And as unrealistic as this may be, I will hope that a line is drawn underneath this and we can somehow move on under Nicky English.
Now, the reactions before the game (when I heard he’d gone) and after are interesting. Rumours abounded that TE was sacked by telephone, which made some people VERY angry. The club (read: Kris) did go on the PA afterwards and read out the OS statement. The crowd started off with some boos of Kris, with a few “fuck offs” aimed as well, presumably at the booers. At the end of the statement, there was some polite applause but I think it was mostly stunned silence. Serious stunned silence. As I went into the Main Stand to relieve myself, there was a very angry sounding woman, along with two gents speaking, the word “power struggle” being mentioned. It will be interesting to note the reactions from now until Saturday, there will be kneejerk reactions, and I get the impression that the sacking is not universally popular.
So what now? I really think we have to wait and see over this. A couple of wins on the pitch (starting Saturday) will lessen a significant amount of the blow, and put Nicky English on a far better footing. This might turn out for the best, though I personally support TE as I do with the vast majority of our managers (including NE). Obviously, if TE decides to follow this up then it will drag on, and serious questions will be asked of the board. These are, as they say, interesting times
One more thing, hello to the guy I was speaking to in the car park after the game. You weren’t the only one asking for me to write up something tonight 🙂