Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Moyes' sacking shows the ugly side of the beautiful game...

David Moyes is not facing a cost of living crisis; we do not need to worry about his financial future. Whatever severance terms he finally agrees with Manchester United he will leave several million pounds richer.

But whether anyone, no matter how prominent or highly paid, should first hear about their sacking via the media is another matter. No employee ought to be publicly humiliated in this way. There should be dignity in labour – in the high street, at a call centre or in the football manager's dugout.

While the sport in which Moyes earns his living has sometimes been called the beautiful game, the treatment handed out to him and other football managers is decidedly ugly. At another United to the east of the Pennines, Leeds, a second manager has had it much worse: Brian McDermott was sacked and reinstated in the space of 24 hours at the beginning of February. As his team beat Huddersfield Town 5-1 he didn't know for sure whether he still had a job. The fans chanted their support for him and by Monday morning he was back in post. For the time being. As the season draws to a close it seems quite possible that the club's new owner, Massimo Cellino, could let him go all over again.

Football probably takes up too much media space already, and football talk can alienate those with no interest in or enthusiasm for the game. But this sport – or rather business – forms a large and unavoidable part of modern life. Its changing mores reflect to some degree the way life has changed more generally. Full story...

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