Great to bump into my old captain Tony Mowbray on Friday night, along with a host of other ex Middlesbrough players at the Former Players Association dinner which was held at The Riverside.I would just like to thank everyone who turned up on the night.
On the subject of Mogga, I was asked the other day, how would I sum up Tony Mowbrays two years in charge? Well we all know when he took over the reigns from Gordon Strachan, that the team were heading towards relegation and Moggas first job was to prevent that from happening, thankfully he achieved that.
Don’t forget this was the worst possible time to take over the Riverside hot seat, we as a team were in crisis and had no money available, he certainly didn’t have the money or the freedom that Robson, McClaren, Southgate or Strachan had.
In laymen’s terms its like Mogga walking into a house, i.e. the Riverside that has been burgled or ransacked. His first job was to clean up the mess left by other peoples mistakes.
Of course they spent the big bucks and money was spent on some awful players, with no resale value. But you have to remember it was all sanctioned by the guys at the top. Its easy to point the finger at one or two people, but for me its down to a consortium of people.
When Mogga joined his home town club, where he has legendary status, there is no doubt he was putting his reputation on the line. We as a club were very fortunate that he was out of a job, after an unhappy spell north of the border with Celtic. We needed someone to appease the fans.
Has he been a success? Off the pitch, without a doubt, Im sure the Chairman and the Chief Executive, have been delighted, he has slashed the wages dramatically, he offloaded a lot of the big earners. I think the wage bill was well over £20 million when he arrived and he has almost halved it and brought in £10 million in transfer fees.The team he is starting to build has been done on the cheap with decent prospects from the lower divisions and free transfers.
Regarding success if we were to grab a play off position this season, I class that as success, if we gained automatic promotion to the premier league I would start a campaign to get Mogga knighted. 13 games into the new campaign and we are starting to see Moggas team shape up, joint second in the division, 3 points behind leaders Cardiff.
I witnessed the game on Saturday against Bolton,we controlled the game for long periods, we were positive going forward and we had a good shape and balance to our side and fully deserved all 3 points. I have always believed you can get a rough idea after 12 games as to where your team are heading and as it stands we are definitely on the right road.
THREE LEGENDS ARE BACK.
After 3 months as political prisoners, my mates and radio colleagues Malcolm Macdonald and Micky Horswill are finally released from their gagging orders and are back on air tonight. What a show it promises to be, I know for a fact they are desperate to start voicing their opinions again and behind the scenes they have been frustrated and fuming while they have been banned from broadcasting. There is no doubt the ears of our former employers will be burning tonight.
Behind the scenes there has been a lot of work going on to enable us to keep the show alive and keep the audience together.
A regional network of community stations has come together to support us. Make sure you are all listening from 6-8 tonight and every weekday via Star radio, or give us a call 08450132200. Remember our show is based on honesty, forthright opinions with no propaganda.
NATIONAL CHAT TOMORROW.
If you have the radio on tomorrow between 12-1pm, if you want to hear my dulcid tones, I will be on Talk Sport with Andy Gray and Richard Keys. I can promise the people that heard me on the Danny Baker show recently, that I will not be reading anything from erotic novels.
SUNDERLAND V MIDDLESBROUGH.
A great opportunity, for us to progress in the competition. Sunderland at the minute can’t win a game for love nor money.The great thing is the game will finish on the night.You want my prediction? My 17 second goal will not be beaten.Ha ha.Up the Boro.