Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Has Gordon Brought Us All This Bad Luck?

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Has Gordon Brought Us All This Bad Luck?

Article excerpt

Byline: Bob Cuffe

WE'RE going through a terrible time are we not? Recent events are conspiring against us. On the sports front regionally, our Big Three last weekend had a very lively time, sharing 14 goals with the opposition.

It's fair to say the opposition were rather greedy, claiming 13 of the goals. Still, we all have the knowledge that the players will be hurting as much as ourselves.

The good news for Newcastle fans is that Big Sam has declared himself out of the running for the England job. I think this seems an ideal time to deliver an equally devastating body blow to the England selectors in withdrawing my name from the running.

And I think I offer even more than Sam, as on the playing front itself I have something to impart. I am currently neck and neck on the goals front with Boro's international striker, Dong Gook Lee. And I'm very confident that Dong - known as Yerjokinarentcher down these parts - won't outscore me all season.

So I could be player/manager. But no, Sam and I are turning our wide backs on England.

And after watching England, I think regionally you all owe us Teessiders an apology. You thought we were just miserable.

We had Steve McClaren for five years.

I'm sure that when Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard release their next thrilling books, we'll find that the people actually at fault were the fans and the media. It was us what did it. Willfully, and with full malice aforethought, deliberately held back The Golden Generation. I think this alludes to their jewellery.

I think that science may provide an answer to the England misfortune. Scientists - and this is true - in Atlanta, Georgia, have found that monkeys get irate when they see one of their number better rewarded for doing the same job. Brown capuchin monkeys were happy to accept cucumbers as rewards but refused them if they saw other monkeys get better payment, such as grapes, for the same amount of work.

Individual monkeys worked better when rewards were fairly distributed. Now it does seem unfair to compare monkeys with the England team, and for that I apologise to our primate cousins, but perhaps the reason why Wayne Bridge - now up there with Carlton Palmer in my Iconic England players - and Steven Gerrard played so astonishingly poorly was because Peter Crouch had been given grapes. And on top of that, they had the leadership, and the umbrella of Steve McClaren.

Steve at his illuminating Press conference informed us that "the future is the future". In addition, he's "a better manager than 18 months ago".

No arguments about that from Teesside. He bought Michael Ricketts, you know. Paid good money for him.

Apparently he learnt, and he moves on. No excuses, but no explanation either.

And Steve told the world he was looking forward to the next opportunity, and that he's not the type to lie on a beach. …

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