Author: Mark

Notts Fit Or Proper Yet

We’re more than one month into the new season, and Notts County’s new owners still won’t reveal who they are and still haven’t been declared fit or proper. Mark Murphy wonders whether they have anything to hide.

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Pompey Play Up

At first glance, Sulaiman Al-Fahim’s CV looks pretty impressive. Hold it up to any rigorous analysis, however, and it all starts to look a little more shaky. Mark Murphy is less than convinced.

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Why We Deserve Better Than Alan Green

The BBC’s veteran radio commentator Alan Green has been at it again, this time insisting on Graham Taylor’s removal as co-commentator for the recent England vs Croatia match. Mark Murphy wonders aloud whether it is time to put Green out to pasture. BBC Radio Five Live’s Alan Green has been at it again, having a spat with a fellow co-commentator and demanding his removal. While the BBC has been at it again, acceding to Green’s every wish. Why? This piece is unlikely to win any awards for originality. Articles about Alan Green’s favourite football commentator appear tend to turn up with the regularity of London buses. His supporters praise his ‘special’ talents, one of which is his ability to start an argument in an otherwise empty room, another of which is is to have more words written about him than he says himself, some achievement for a man who makes a living talking for chunks of twenty two & a half minutes plus stoppage time in one go, but amongst all the verbiage he inspires, only rarely does the telling phrase appear: “Alan Green is not a very good radio football commentator” . His latest spat came during the otherwise non-event of a Slovenia friendly. He said something along the lines of participants in the Mexican wave “should be shot” – a bit extreme and, for a national radio...

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Bournemouth’s Transfer Embargo Continues

AFC Bournemouth overcame a seventeen point deduction to stay in League Two but, as Mark Murphy writes, their problems didn’t finish there. It could be argued that the greatest condemnation of the Football League’s “Fit and Proper Person” test was that Ken Bates could pass it. This, however, may no longer be the case – not because of anything Bates himself has done, but because of the serial mismanagement of AFC Bournemouth’s affairs last season – which has emerged from the Football League’s explanation for maintaining the strictest possible transfer embargo on the South Coast club. Current Bournemouth chairman Eddie Mitchell issued a statement three days after meeting league officials at their Preston HQ this week to discuss the embargo’s future. While Notts County can add the equivalent of a small country’s Gross Domestic Product to their salary bill apparently without breaching League Two’s salary cap, Bournemouth cannot currently even loan a player from another club. Football League regulations allow these two contrasting circumstances to apply, despite what is supposed to be a ‘level playing field’ because of the mismanagement skills of gentlemen called Alastair Saverimutto and Paul Baker. Sol Campbell’s £40,000-per-week keeps Notts’ salary bill below 60% of turnover because their new owners, Middle East consortium Munto Finance, are paying Campbell’s wages outside of the club’s actual turnover, even though the financiers behind Munto are yet to be...

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