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Duncan Edwards returns exasperated by players and sections of the fanbase alike. This season is done, but plans are coming together for a summer overhaul.
Is there anything left to say? A club on the slide. A runaway freight train, an Ice Road Truck on slicks, a three legged zebra in the Grand National.
Or a club about to undergo an almighty overhaul in an effort to ensure that we don't have another season like this?
Predictably, there'll be folk staunchly positioned on both sides.For some, the idea that a group of players unsure about their futures playing for a manager who is sure he doesn't want the job while the board wait to appoint a guy they've headhunted mitigates nothing.
I understand that. Ultimately, these people are professionals. They're remunerated handsomely; the least the poor sods spending their far less handsome and harder earned salaries to watch deserve is more than token effort.
Unfortunately, the players are playing for absolutely nothing right now. No chance of going up, no chance of going down and there's not even a new gaffer to impress or stake a claim to. It could be argued that professional pride still exists but it's evident that plenty of this lot can't even muster up that.
We're going through the motions. Treading water. On that bloody beach that has previously been exclusively occupied by teams we beat at the end of a season. It's like watching the death throes of a factory floor; employees on notice, motivation gone, productivity non-existent.
A lot of these players will know that their future lies away from Carrow Road - be that their choice or ours. Some will already be engineering their exits. Coupled with the fact that Irvine has as much chance of being here next season as Glenn Roeder; no, they're not playing for "the shirt".
As I've said, for some that's inexcusable. Even if you chill your anger down to a rolling boil it's likely to not only get your goat but probably take it home too.
In fact, I'm not sure anyone has tried to excuse the apathy and lethargy that has increasingly infected our performances. For some though, the outrage following each predictable capitulation is a waste of almost as much energy as the team are failing to put in.
"Why are we kept in the dark?"
"Why is Irvine clinging on week after week?"
"This is what happens when non-football people run the club."
"Why sack Alex Neil if nothing was going to change?"
"We should boycott on Saturday"
"At least we're debt free"
Twitter is still full of it now.
The frustration is clear. Norfolk this morning was carpeted with another layer of torn out hair.
But do we need to be quite so angry?
We know what's happening. The board are appointing a Sporting Director, a position they've stated will be filled prior to any head coach appointment. So Irvine isn't clinging on. He's in the impossible position of temporarily doing a job he has no chance of getting, and doesn't want, permanently while the club put their new structure in place. As for not sacking Neil; I can see a point. Much like I could see a similar argument when we sacked Hughton; would I rather have Neil or Irvine in charge? Neil. However, things were becoming increasingly toxic amongst the fans and I think most would agree it was the correct decision.
I suppose there's an element of impatience. Things have got worse rather than better following Neil's departure; no point trying to reinvent history though. We wanted him out. He is out.
Much is the same with this "football people" argument.
Even if we choose to ignore the 20 years experience of the majority shareholders and regard them as well meaning amateurs; we had a "football person" in Jez Moxey.
Nobody liked him. There was almost a satisfaction around the fans when he got his nameplate and family photo unceremoniously presented to him in a cardboard box. Yet now, with things seemingly worse, it's because we don't have football folk - like Moxey - involved.
As for suggestions of boycotting and the obsession of some with out alleged obsession with being debt free...
I honestly despair.
What would we be boycotting FOR?What would be the aim? What message would we be putting across? We don't like losing? If people don't want to go; fine. I wouldn't criticise them, they'll be missing another, essentially, dead rubber. I won't be there myself on Saturday; Grand National day but talk of "boycotts" is a bit, well, bratty toddler.
The debt free thing... just for my good mate Danny..
He was at the AGM; he knows that "debt free" will be a thing of the past soon enough so it really isn't a stick to beat the club with, tongue in cheek or not. Middlesbrough have "had a go" spending plenty and signing "names". They're worse than we were. Still, if you're serious, maybe knock up some placards with "WE WANT DEBT" on them, nobody would laugh...
It's shit. We all know that it's shit. The board know that it's shit.
We also know they're trying a new approach, that they've headhunted the guy they want. Shown a purpose, desire and aggression that we are missing on the pitch.
Now Webber is in, a new Head Coach will follow and we'll know a bit more.
A busy summer to follow and we can turn up in August with renewed optimism.
Don't let the remainder of this season colour your views or accept it as the norm when it is anything but. It's a case of seeing the depressing darkness through to the end before the exciting new dawn breaks.
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