TSF: Making No Sense Of Di Matteo

The Secret Footballer was so confused by Chelsea's actions that he rung one of his old owners. "It's crazy, isn't it?" was the answer from a man who counted the cost...

Last Updated: 22/11/12 at 17:10 Post Comment

Latest Articles

Football People On TV: Gordon Strachan

Post comment

Chippy arse? Aye...do you want some? Wee Gordie is never anything other than entertaining, even if he is wearing adult man¿s shorts as trousers. Especially so....

F365's Transfer Guide - Part Five

Post comment

Our final part, and the question of what on earth will happen at West Ham? Plus there is much to ponder for Spurs - evolution or yet another revolution at White Hart Lane...

All Articles

So, it wasn't all about winning the Champions League for Chelsea's billionaire owner, then? It must be something else that he craves, although in the wake of Roberto Di Matteo's sacking, I'll admit I have no idea what that could be.

The best thing and the worst thing about football is that everyone has an opinion. And anybody can hold any other person to a conversation about football because it's a universal topic. It's what you talk about that determines how long that conversation lasts.

For some reason, the owners of the clubs I have played for have tended to make time for me; probably because I'm the only player who has never said to them: "How much money do you really have?"

Instead, I have always been interested by the things that go on behind the scenes, which probably goes a fair way to answering why I began writing 'The Secret Footballer' columns. Things like "How do you actually interview a prospective manager? What do you ask him? How does the board agree on the best man for the job?"

Fortunately, I have stayed in touch with many of my old chairmen and owners. I've also met some new ones by sheer coincidence. But there is one owner, in particular, who has always remained 'close', to the point where I can pick up the phone and ask him how things really work at boardroom level. The obvious starting point was Di Matteo.

"It's crazy, isn't it?" the owner told me. "Nothing surprises me down there any more. They had the most successful manager in their history and sacked him (Jose Mourinho), a World Cup winner (Luiz Felipe Scolari) and sacked him, a Champions League winner (Carlo Ancelotti) and one of their own, who actually wins them this bloody trophy they've all been after...and lo and behold, he (Di Matteo) gets the boot, too.

"Hiring managers on long-term, well-paid contracts, and then firing them six months or a year into the deal, achieves only one thing - a heavy loss on the club's balance sheet. Why on earth would I want that?"

Why, indeed? Perhaps Roman Abramovich has the answer.

Read the rest of TSF's thoughts only on www.thesecretfootballer.com.

You can follow The Secret Footballer on Twitter here, or buy his book here, which we reviewed here

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

S

till reckon Chelsea will go for Khedira as back up for Matic. I think it will turn out to be quite a Mourihno-y window: We'll see the squad players and youth in action pre-season, say things like well, we need not buy anybody and then the club will bid £60m for Pogba and send everybody on loan.

tk421
F365's Transfer Guide - Part One

I

would love to be a fly on the wall at the meeting between Milner and Rodgers. I don't know if flies can count, but if they can then I would be counting the number of times Rodgers used the word outstanding in his attempts to get Milner to sign.

godzilla
Reds and Arsenal chase Milner

W

ell, it wouldn't be a summer without Arsenal fans fretting over losing a key player, and United throwing their weight around and muscling in on transfer deals which are (apparently) near to completion. If we can't be entertained by the football on the pitch, let's enjoy the silly off-pitch soap opera of the transfer season. Hurrah!

CamberleyGooner
The Back To It Gossip

Latest Photos

Footer 365

FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke was sent letter from South African FA

Sky Sports News HQ has a copy of a letter sent from the South African FA to FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke.

Real Madrid are confident of landing David de Gea

Real Madrid are growing increasingly confident of signing Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea.

Agent: Benteke won't sign new Villa deal

Christian Benteke will turn down a new deal from Aston Villa and try force a move out of the club, his agent revealed during a prank phone call.

Mail Box

Liverpool 2015 Feels Like Liverpool 2011...

One Mailer says Benteke = Carroll, Bellamy = Milner and Clyne = Downing. Plus we have U21 Euro impatience, farewell Rio, Rafa Benitez, Milner, FIFA and title play-offs...

Calling Carlo For Liverpool... Please

One Liverpool Mailer wants a manager who isn't starstruck by the job. Plus why Milner has now become overrated, play-offs for the title, Ronaldinho and democracy..

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company