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Anorak | Blues Bottle

Blues Bottle

by | 11th, July 2003

‘SVEN Goran Eriksson is surely not the only one embarrassed at being caught having secret talks with new Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich.

What turnip will follow the Swede?

The London club would no doubt prefer Claudio Ranieri not to have found out in such dramatic fashion that he is not their first choice to take charge of the club next season.

And the FA, which has pinned so much faith on Eriksson, must be disturbed by the Swede’s lack of loyalty.

However, calls to sack Eriksson for this lack of judgement, are premature and should be resisted.

So far, Eriksson has done nothing more than have discussions with a club – discussions which may have had more to do with his future after his England contract runs out.

Even if the Swede was contemplating jumping ship sooner than that, for instance after the European Championships in 2004, what would be gained by getting rid of him now?

Apart from the enormous expense that removing Eriksson would entail, there is no obvious replacement.

And the timing is such that England would be forced to enter the vital period of their qualification either with a new manager or a caretaker manager.

The jury are still out on Eriksson as an international coach, although his record in competitive fixtures is highly impressive.

It would be in everyone’s interests to wait until next summer before making a decision on the future.

By that time and if England do not perform as we believe they should, then it may be possible to effect an amicable separation.

One can understand why Eriksson is tempted by a return to club management and, after four years in charge, it may be the time for him to go.

The FA will also have had another year in which to groom a successor.

And judging by events this week, it is a task they should be focussing on as a matter of some urgency.



Posted: 11th, July 2003 | In: Back pages Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink