So the other day I was looking through the papers to see what new signings my beloved Arsenal were making. As usual this did not take long, so my mind wandered to politics and some similarities in my support of Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party.
I feel like I support a football team, with past glories and some not so good eras. I support this team through thick and thin even when I question the way it’s run or the direction it’s going.
Suddenly a new manager arrives. When he went for the job many said he would not stand a chance. however he got the job and he knows the traditions of the club and he speaks of how he will make the club great again. The fans love him and they start coming back to the club excited for the future.
The manager’s ideas are not radical as such but they are a big shift from how the team has been moving for the past few years.
The players however are not too sure. Neither is the board. It will mean change and it will mean having to look at things differently it will mean having any past misdemeanours looked into and for a complete change of attitude from some.
And the fans know he is being undermined in the dressing room and they know the board are looking for a way to oust him.
And they try – but the fans demand he stays
So a group of players leave, some with tears in their eyes, going to the media and telling tales of a lack of communication , of causing the return of discrimination , even of being a bully.
Many are convinced of this because of the coverage it gets. The fans however, they see something different. They speak of all the games he won and points he scored despite not having the full backing of the club. They see him battle and stand dignified as he takes his loyal players and tackles every obstacle and still win.
And the players who left are saying they could do better, and even say they could be manager. The fans quickly highlight how many own goals they have scored and support for them is not good. Only one stands eventually but actually he is quite a new player who they got on a free and is only really in the team because he has links with past managers.
The players are envious of the manager and can’t understand why he commands such loyalty so they call the fans all sorts of names and accuse them of lots of unseemly things.
But this just makes the fans stronger
Until eventually the players start to see – he is a strong resilient manager and he has done amazing things with the club despite not having a strong team around him .
As thing progress some start to realise they made a mistake , some that they have forgotten what football is about. When it is all work will be needed to make them a team again and some may well realise that the team was not really suitable for them so they get a transfer.
The manager however will still be in place and will be stronger than ever.
Alex Ferguson was nearly sacked at the start of his Man United career. But no one remembers that now.