The other day my wife asked me; “Have you checked the oil in the car?” I replied ; “That’s a very interesting question. You’re hair looks lovely today”. I expected my cunning response would elicit a response along the lines of; “Thank you my love, I’ve put some new expensive goop on it.” Like many husbands, I had misjudged my wife’s response. Her knuckles visited the gonadal region, and I crawled off to check the oil. I’m not the only person who gives inaccurate answers to questions.
In the football world one of the most irritating examples is when a club denies any contact with a prospective target. The response is often true in a superficial way, but in fact intermediaries have been doing a deal. Both parties have used intermediaries to provide what the Americas call ‘Deniability’. It could also be called deception.
This week we may have witnessed a complex dance involving Frank Sinclair and possibly others. Board members have suddenly felt an unseasonal urge to go to the seaside, where they claim to have visited some old friends and certainly not discussed any managerial vacancies, which may, or may not be available. Football persons have suggested their interest in becoming our manager, but apparently counted themselves out, either by not applying (Robbie Fowler) or not meeting our Boards criteria. One of the Board’s criteria sounds like a statement of the kind I might try to sneak past my wife.
The Board have stated that they will not be approaching people who are currently employed as a football manager. That’s straightforward isn’t it? What about people who are employed, but make applications?(possibly Steve Burr at Chester, or Frank Sinclair at Colwyn Bay) We can’t tell whether they would be ignored with reference to the statement or whether the board might use intermediaries to provide ‘deniability’. I think the board might answer my gripe by stating they are going to adopt a robust and fair recruitment process. I don’t want ‘robust and fair’! I want the right man!, This means going to get the right man and telling me this is their intention.
I hope for communication from our board without ambiguity or ‘spin’, we’re better than that. I could be wrong, it’s only a small moan. As you can see from the above, I’m feeling a bit sore.