When Peter Ridsdale says you are in trouble, you are in trouble

When you hear that Peter Ridsdale says your club is in real trouble then you probably are in trouble.  Having left Cardiff City and now seemingly refused to help (I use the word lightly) Plymouth Argyle, he is now making comments about Blackburn and saying that he worries for their future.

Just in case you are out of touch with the madness of football Ridsdale came  5th in the Daily Mirror’s top ten list of bonkers club owners.  OK I don’t normally quote the Mirror, but it does have a lot going for it – in that it is not the Sun, the Sport, the Star, the Mail or the Express.

This is what they said in their top 10 of Ridsdale

Known by football agents as ‘Father Christmas”, Ridsdale oversaw a period of largesse at Leeds that was so over the top the club is still paying the price today. During his reign at Elland Road the club was coughing up for 70 company cars (at an annual cost of £600,000), ran up a £70,000-a-year bill for directors’ travel in private jets and paid off sacked managers David O’Leary and Terry Venables to the tune of £5.7million. He eventually left with the club £79m in debt. Including a £240 bill for the goldfish in his office!

To me that reads like something that has been heavily edited by the lawyers, but it gives you a clue – a tiny insight – into the world of Mr R.

The actual top ten the Mirror ran was…

1: Former safe cracker and tax evader George Reynolds at Darlington (a real fit and proper person according to the FA)

2: Terry Smith who owned poor Chester.  I personally think this inclusion is unfair – when you look at what has happened to them since.  Just because he would take players to fast food restaurants before the game and then read them the Lord’s Prayer.  It could have worked!

3:  Spencer Trethewy who as a 19 year old appeared on TV to say he was buying Aldershot for £200k and was then jailed for fraud after failing to pay his hotel bill.  Seemingly now owns or owned  Chertsey Town FC

4:  Simon Jordon.  I don’t know about this one either – was the Palace man as bonkers as the rest on this list?   His view of David Gold seems ok to me:  “I was sick and tired of reading about David Gold trotting out his story about being a poor East End boy made good. We have heard it enough times now David! You were a poor boy, and now you’re sitting on a big pile of porn with loads of money. I said if I had to hear that story again I would impale myself on one of his dildos.”

5:  The Ridsdale

6:  Sam Hammam   I liked Sam too – in fact I like anyone who says to his staff that if they don’t perform well enough he will force them to sit through Wagner at the Royal Opera.   And anyone who locks Robbie Earle in a room can’t be all bad.

7:  Martin Edwards, who as Man U chair was cautioned (ie charged – and he accepted the charge) for looking under the cubicle door to watch a woman he was after in the Mottram Hall Hotel

8: Michael Knighton – who bought Carlisle and nearly bought Man U for £20m.   He still owes me £150 over some work my company did for a private school he owned.

9: Ken Bates – who wanted to put electrified fences around the pitch at Chelsea.  Now at Leeds.  If ever there was a match made in heaven it was Ken Bates and Leeds.

10: The wonderful Freddy Shepherd, who personally I would have had much higher up the list.  Visited brothels, denigrated local fans of the female variety, called Alan Shearer “Mary Poppins.”   Actually maybe he wasn’t that bad.

But back to Blackburn. This club, you may remember, is now owned by a company whose chair said, on taking over the show, that they would not be buying any new players.  Why buy new players, she asked, when you can lease them?

About chucking Sam the Slug out she said, “We want Blackburn Rovers to be fourth or fifth in the league or even better.  We wanted good football, wanted the games to be interesting and of course wanted to win and to have good players.  This is a major step but it was needed. We thought: Why delay?”

The current boss Steve Kean got the job because, “he works long hours.”   Actually so do I but they didn’t give the job to me.

Oh and if they were to come in 5th they would not be able to play in the Europa League because their finances don’t allow it.   Not enough people at the matches, too much put in by the previous late owner and his trust – a no-hoper for the Uefa rules.

It is also said that Sam the Slug wanted to buy David Bentley which I suppose is a good enough reason to put him in the top ten of mad managers.  And there’s a thought – must do that list some time soon.

Now let me see….  Top ten bonkers managers

David O’Leary (I know he was a star for us – but really his time at Leeds was… well), Ruud Gullit at Chelsea, some of those people at Tottenham (including the present one)… oh this could be fun.

Making the Arsenal: third edition out tomorrow.

4 Replies to “When Peter Ridsdale says you are in trouble, you are in trouble”

  1. The simplest reason for Ridsdale to say that Blackburn are in trouble is if he is either angling for a job with them or has been rebuffed by them.

    I don’t think many will disagree with you about what he did at Leeds.

    At Cardiff, his job was to move the club to the new stadium and bring in international investors. He’s done that, now he’s finished that. How well or badly he did, you no doubt know, with your access to all the electronic bugging that Arsenal regards as both acceptable and de rigeur as part of everyday business (trust me, it goes to the top and is illegal: perhaps you would like to write an article about that? It is peepshow business par excellence, something you rant about with disdain at regular intervals with regard to the female skin at various stages of undress: why, may I ask? Ah, I get it: YOU’RE ALLOWED TO PEEP AT OTHERS’ BUSINESS ACTIVITIES as well as their actions in their own homes: lovely behaviour that, isn’t it???? It’s ARSENAL BEHAVIOUR……..)

    He has made enquiries about Charlton, apparently, and Plymouth, apparently.

    The connecting strand is clubs with potential currently underperforming. Large catchment areas, high championship potential now, Premier League potential mid-term.

    I think the general reason that Mr Allardyce wasn’t too keen on what was proposed was that the consultant was also an agent, which has a rather enormous conflict of interest and, they operating in Switzerland, would be suitably far away from FA jurisdiction to do whatever they fancied in terms of monetary siphonings in the absence of rather a lot of concerned fans airing that possibility in the past 24 hours. You will not some rapid re-evaluation of the PR spin in the past editions of the newspapers…….not to mention rapid rubbishings of rumours that they were going to hire Senor Handball who was salivating at the prospect of managing Kris Boyd after, in the words of Martin Samuel, working for two years with ‘that dilettante lightweight, Lionel Messi’……..despite your hatred for the Mail, they did understated irony rather well there, didn’t they??

  2. I bet Michael Knighton wishes he had sold his grandmothers and his kids to raise that £20m now.

  3. You’ve missed out Dan McCauley, former owner of Plymouth Argyle, the man who was “holidaying mates” with Neil Warnock, and appointed him as manager. After one glorious season Neil Warnock took Argyle up and, 6 weeks into the new season, was promtly sacked by text message because “his ego was too big”. By the way, Warnock loved Plymouth and was likely to remain there for many years to come. That was one big moment for turning sucess into failure.

    The same man oversaw the era of the phantom lottery, where every other week the winners name was made up. When the fraud squad investigated he is quoted as saying “it’s not as if anyone has gained financially out of it”. McCauley strategy, it seems, was to keep the club in the bottom division (this a club that had never been in the bottom division until his tenure) in the hope of making money from the ground redevelopment.

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