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Mark's Monday Moan: Give Roy a chance

Mark Holmes rounds on those sharpening their knives for Roy Hodgson and also talks Blackburn and fan behaviour in his latest Monday Moan blog.

Last Updated: 30/04/12 at 13:14 Post Comment

Hodgson: Won't be a wally with a brolley if he's supported

Hodgson: Won't be a wally with a brolley if he's supported

Last week I questioned Scott Parker's inclusion in the PFA Team of the Year, blasted Wolves' board and hailed Chelsea's performance against Barcelona, and this week my attention is on those already ready to write off Roy Hodgson, plus Blackburn's impending relegation and the chants at the Britannia Stadium and Stamford Bridge over the weekend.

Give Hodgson a chance

The media had the entire nation convinced that Harry Redknapp was a shoo-in for the England job. The FA kept quiet on the issue and Redknapp himself surprisingly kept fairly quiet on it, but the media made it absolutely clear that Redknapp was the FA's only choice. They were united that good old Harry was getting the job.

Well, it appears they were wrong. David Bernstein insists Roy Hodgson is the only man they have considered for the job and, if we are to believe that statement, a lot of high-profile journalists have been left with egg on their face.

That, plus the fact so many of them were clearly desperate for Redknapp to get the job, has led to a lot of angry, bitter and hugely disrespectful tweets and opinion pieces since the FA's announcement.

More worryingly, England fans had been so brainwashed into believing Redknapp would take over that many of them too now feel disappointed the FA have not gone for the 'people's choice'.

But Redknapp is hardly Brian Clough. Having the backing of the press and the public would have been handy, granted, and I think he's a great man manager who would have got England playing entertaining football. But would he have won us the European Championships? No chance.

This isn't me speaking after the horse has bolted either - I have always had my doubts about Redknapp as an England manager. When we had five or six world-class players he may have been ideal, but England are now an average team by international standards and we need a manager that can get them performing above themselves. A manager that can come up with a plan to beat better teams other than 'go out and play your football'.

That man could well be Hodgson. Liverpool fans will understandably be vocal in their criticism of him, but Hodgson is extremely tactically astute and has proven at West Brom and at Fulham that he can achieve good things with average sides.

I don't doubt England would be better to watch with Redknapp in charge but ultimately the FA has to pick a manager to give us the best chance of winning something, and I genuinely believe Hodgson is that manager. Well, the best English manager...but that's another story.

I'm sure he will take the job so for goodness sake let's get behind him because, as Hodgson's time at Anfield proved, it's doubly hard to succeed when you don't have the support of your fans.

Kean has failed

I have angered Blackburn fans on numerous occasions this season due to my support of Steve Kean and criticism of their protests and behaviour in the stands.

Now, with Rovers' relegation virtually confirmed, a lot of them may want to say 'told you so'. And even I would have to admit their performance at Tottenham on Sunday was shocking - and Kean has to take the blame for that.

He has to take the blame for the season as a whole, too. I said he'd be a Manager of the Year contender if he kept Rovers up but that now looks extremely unlikely to happen so ultimately he has failed.

Irrespective of the difficult conditions he has worked under, Blackburn should have had enough quality to stay up and that they almost certainly won't has to be down to Kean.

However, I still have to wonder how it might have been different had Kean not been the subject of such viscious abuse from the stands this season. As I mentioned above, it is extremely hard to succeed without the backing of your supporters, and Rovers fans are kidding themselves if they don't believe their actions this season have not been a factor in the club's struggles.

But fair is fair, fans moaned that Kean was tactically inept and that he would take them down - and it looks like they were right all along.

No high ground available for football fans

Stoke fans have come in for criticism for their booing of Aaron Ramsey on Saturday, and I have to say I was extremely disappointed in those that did. I was disappointed in the way Arsenal handled the fall-out of his injury a few years ago but I certainly don't hold a grudge against an innocent young man who had his leg broken.

However, all those complaining that Stoke's fans are a bunch of knuckle-draggers need to get off their high horses. Is there a set of supporters in the land that can say they haven't been embarrassed by the behaviour of a minority of their fellow fans at some point or other?

This very weekend saw Anton Ferdinand once again abused by Chelsea fans - and Patrice Evra suffered at the same fate at the hands of Liverpool fans earlier this season. And more pertinently, Arsenal fans booed and chanted 'You know what you are' at Ryan Shawcross throughout Saturday's game at Stoke.

I don't condone what our fans did one iota, but it was a response to equally deplorable behaviour by the visiting supporters. Some of Arsenal's more blinkered fans will say Shawcross deserves everything he gets, but the sensible Arsenal fans will be just as disappointed in the behaviour of some of their contemporaries as us Stoke fans were in some of ours.

But football fans acting like idiots is hardly a new thing, is it?

Have your say

Let me know your thoughts on Hodgson and my other moans in the comments box below - and don't forget to tell us what has annoyed you this weekend, too.

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