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By Bulldog Drummond
Tottenham in crisis?
Well not normally according to the media, for normally they are portrayed as sailing a steady course, keeping their powder dry, and ready at any moment to overtake Arsenal.
The issue is of course that the managing director of football Fabio Paratici’s ban from football has been extended across the world by Fifa – immediately after Tottenham released a video of the poor sap talking about the removal of Conte.
But really the most interesting thing about the story is that Fabio Paratici had his 30-month ban from football in Italy extended to a worldwide ban after it was originally just an Italian ban. This is because that is what Fifa does. A person on the naughty step gets banned from his own country, and then if Fifa considers the matter serious (or perhaps if a suitable bribe isn’t paid, but I have no evidence on that one) it becomes a worldwide ban. That’s how it goes. It wasn’t a surprise extension: this is the normal procedure.
So what Tottenham are doing now, and this is the wonderful bit, is going to Fifa and saying “does this world-wide ban apply to north London?”
And indeed this is a deep philosophical issue, for we have oft-wondered, Is Tottenham part of the world? I guess it is something many of us have debated over time and the reason why Levy is questioning whether a world-wide ban does apply to the High Road, N17.
Certainly, this fiasco could fully explain why the Totty Stadium has no name. (Indeed that is an issue that Untold raised on many occasions – the ability to build a billion-dollar stadium without selling the naming rights. Something of business failure it seems to me, but of course, I know nothing of these higher echelons.)
But looking beyond this point for a moment, it is interesting that the report cited above continues with “Paratici’s 30-month ban from Italian football, for alleged malpractice”.
The normal way of writing and speaking is to use the word “alleged” before someone is found guilty or not guilty, not once they have been found guilty and handed down the sentence. Do we say Harold Shipman was an alleged mass murderer?
And this raises the question, how is it that Tottenham have managed to persuade journos to write in this bendy-down manner never blaming the club and always anticipating a positive outcome just around the corner? I don’t know but it certainly is a clever trick if you can pull it off.
Of course, Tottenham can face this crisis and come through it, because Tottenham has Levy and it certainly wasn’t his fault that as the Telegraph reported Tottenham booked Beyoncé to play an extra concert when they had already used up all the dates allowed by Haringey Council. (Dates for concerts outside city centres are limited by all councils because all such events cause a lot of disruption to residents, and so this is kept under strict control).
Of course, Levy and his fellow yes-men (sorry, directors), are doing a fine job and are honourable men, which is why Levy himself took a pay rise of half a million pounds this year, and Paraticic and his fellow underlings took home an extra £3m bonus in the last year.
And there’s another little lurking problem: Tottenham need a new manager, and any football manager worth his salt will look twice and then again at a club that cannot get its licencing right, keeps sacking people, and then appoints someone about to be banned.
The Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ Trust released a statement which read, “Fans deserve to hear a clear statement of strategy from THFC so they can be reassured by the board on their plan to bring success and stability to the club.”
But really, surely this is going too far. They are Tottenham fans. Surely they know what they signed up to when they became Tottenham fans. It really is no good complaining now. I mean, us Untold writers go and support their local non-league team when Arsenal are not playing. Then when the local lads end up in mid-table in the Midlands League, we don’t claim we deserve better. We know what we signed up for.
And it is not as if this is all new. If only they had read Untold they would have seen the headline
It’s all there on this site, and that was in 2012 so they’ve had plenty of time to find it.
Anyway, Levy is ready with a response. He is increasing the price of season tickets for next season. Oh yes, and he has sacked the coach of the women’s team.
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