Here is the latest in an occasional series of diaries from the owners of Premiumship clubs. Any resemblance to existing Premiership clubs, real or imaginary, is purely deliberate.
Daniel Levee – Transitionham Hotspur
An exclusive extract from his autobiography “When the Levee Breaks”
‘Our fans will of course understand that 2013-14 has been a transitional year for us. I am writing to them all to acknowledge that I have made mistakes in the past but I have now seen the light and the way forward.
Fans know I am a man of my word. I made it clear only last summer that our world-class Welsh wizard was not for sale and would be going nowhere. Just like Merseyside Reds said about their errant arm-biter. By keeping him they have gone from strength to strength, thrashed us twice and are now top of the league. As I spent £100 million on players that the Champions League clubs did not want I made it clear that the expenditure had nothing to do with the potential income from the sale of our “worldie”. I know fans admired the way I stuck to my guns for two whole months. I had hoped that by spending in advance the entire transfer fee that I then secured in August by selling him for a world record fee that we would also have comfortably qualified for the Champions League by now. However it has proved to be a year of transition.
I am proud of the fact that 18 months ago I decided to return to the European method of a head coach working under a Director of Football following the transitional period when I was wholly committed to having a traditional English manager responsible for everything. That was clearly necessary following the transitional period when we had a dalliance with the European head coach/director of football combination. Happy Harry was remarkably successful compared to his predecessors but clearly had to go when he took his eye off the ball for several weeks just because he was under the cosh of a massive court case that threatened his very liberty and was expected to leave to manage England at any time.
I once again backed my judgement by appointing the young Portuguese known as HGV after West London Blues decided he was not up to the job of managing them to the Champions League. We agreed on and were both committed to a long term project to develop our club to repeated Champions League qualification and associated success. He achieved our best Premiumship points total but failed to qualify for the Champions League, playing a possession game with the team even scoring the occasional goal in what I now like to think of as the “paint drying” style. His was clearly a period of transition and after repeated thrashings by the top clubs he had to go as a long term project in these circumstances is out of the question.
I then decided to give our Tim a two year contract to guide us through what is clearly going to be a period of transition. Hopefully he will complete his qualifications to do the job soon. I know our fans will understand this and show patience.
It is imperative to balance the books financially, especially in a period of transition and that involves careful planning against all eventualities. I have had to set aside a substantial sum against the anticipated legal costs of defending an action of colour prejudice from a former player. I have heard he is likely to apply for the next manager’s vacancy. He won’t be successful for all sorts of good reasons because he falls short on loyalty, attitude and personality but he seems blind to his shortcomings and is known for blaming prejudice for the reasons he does not get what he wants.
I am sure you will all remember the Scandinavian international Papa Smurf. He was a strong, fast, skilful defender who quit us over a decade ago on a free transfer and a King’s ransom to our north London rivals. He did so when he could not secure the pay rise he thought he deserved from my predecessor. He was not picked as captain for his country as often as he thought he deserved to be and has just alleged in his autobiography that it was because he is blue! This is despite other blue players being selected on a regular basis. We were very fortunate that he was replaced at Transitionham by an even better blue player from our youth academy, who had all the personal attributes that he did not, as well as the physical skills. But for injuries he really would have gone on to captain his country for 10 years.
If there is one thing that the last decade has shown me it is the need to have a clear vision and stick with it, just as we have with the plans for the new stadium. As part of these we have created a transitional Members Club by welding together two large portakabins on the High Road and installing toilets, TVs and some beer pumps. It sends a clear message that we have the fans’ interests at heart.’