Not a lot of things really bug me. I’m an easy going kinda guy.
Some things are stupid, I say they are stupid and move on. Some people do stupid things, I say they are stupid things, endeavour not to hold it against him, and move on.
That way I can accept my dislike of Gary Neville as a Manchester United player because he was a Manchester United player, but appreciate him as a top pundit because he is a top pundit. I can also appreciate Jamie Redknapp as a good midfielder partially because he was a Liverpool but mostly because he was a good player, but also dislike him as a pundit because he’s prone to silly statements. I dislike his football pundit persona, but I don’t let it annoy me too much. Cos I’m an easy going kinda guy.
Then came Timothy.
If you ask my football following friends what button to press to get me ranting just mention the name Timothy. His surname is not necessary to be told, you just say Timothy and that’s the trigger.
Before this season I had no problems with Timothy. I knew him as a fairly average Premier League player plying his trade with Spurs, Portsmouth, Blackburn Rovers and in the old days Norwich City. I believe Timothy won England caps, but I’m sure that was down to the sparse nature of quality central midfielders because at his best, the geezer was not international class. Give him dues though, the guy as a player played at the top of the game and if Dalglish sees a man as being worthy of the captaincy of a team that would go onto win the Premier League, the player cannot be a chump.
If that was all I heard about Timothy, the brother would not have got me to raise an eyebrow in interest. Of course, though, this season when things were not going according to plan at Spurs and a change was called for Spurs in their wisdom chose to appoint Timothy as the new boss.
Cards on the table. My view of the handling of AvB was that it was unfortunate. There have obviously been issues that AvB endured in his reigns in London. It’s sad, because he evidently is a talented coach and given the opportunity and the appropriate project, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be a success. Nevertheless it didn’t work out. The hammering by Liverpool at White Hart Lane was the death knell and called for a time for change. So Spurs needed change. They needed something to take them forward and rescue the season.
They chose Timothy.
As I write, I am still working out a legitimate reason for appointing him. He had no managerial experience and this was a club looking to be a contender for the Champions League. Where was the thinking in appointing him? What was it about him that made them choose him?
From the outset Timothy appeared to make it his point of duty to be as annoying a football personality as possible. Some have talked about his refreshing honesty, they have hailed how he says it like it is. They have pointed – with helpful assistance from his good self – to the great win record he’s had in his time at Spurs.
When you actually assess what he’s done at Spurs all he’s managed to do is to keep a side that appeared to be going nowhere before him to continue on the path of going nowhere. He gave young players a chance. So? Did that improve the side? Nope. He alienated a number of other players. Did that improve the side? Nope. Were there any big wins he pulled out of the hat? Nope. Are Spurs in a better place now than they were when AvB left? Nope?
He hails his win record, but has that got Spurs their best points in a season? Nope. Have they progressed beyond where they were from last season? Nope. Has he shown anything to genuinely prove he is the man to be responsible for helping Spurs actualise the potential on offer both from the young players and from the £100 million worth of talent available in the squad? Seriously? Really?
Some say he deserved a chance. Some say he needed more time. But if you really think top players will be attracted to be coached by Timothy after the things he’s cracked off with, you must be in serious need of attention. In his playing days he came across as a bit cocky and someone who thought he was a lot more than he was. That’s fine when you’ve got good players around you to make you look good. As a manager when you’re the focal point for the whole club, you’ve got to back your big words, and too often he’s been found wanting and finding it all too easy to blame factors beyond his control.
It’s not the fact that he’s got a big mouth that bugs me. Clough had a big mouth – I liked the guy. Mourinho has a mouth on him – I like the guy. They weren’t always right, they weren’t always popular, but they backed their big words with results. They did that because they were savvy in their time to negotiate the football political shenanigans to stay on top.
When it comes to Timothy, the brother from the start was just spouting hot air and backing it with abysmal performances from teams he selected and trained when it mattered most. The mourning for his departure and the sympathy its elicited from some of the usual suspects has been pathetic. The one thing Spurs did well was to ensure that they had that clause in the contract ensuring that if needed Sherwood would just be the supply teacher they needed for the time being – not the full-time, proper, tactically and technically savvy teacher they’re looking for.
No football individual has wound me up so much for a long time than Timothy. Yet as he looks for the next step in his football career, I really hope he gets a club at his level. A club that he can mould and build so that they develop together. A proper place that can humble him and then allow him to do his big mouth business with the credentials to back it, rather than talking a big game and being blown apart.
For His Name’s Sake
C. L. J. Dryden