This article appeared originally on my old blog on January 27th 2016
This week has seen a social media frenzy at reports that an irate Imps manager swore at fans after the 3-1 defeat at Wrexham, a result that stretched the beleaguered bosses winless streak to 11 games.
Moments after the final whistle the wonder of modern technology allowed fans to start commenting that Chris had told travelling supporters to ‘fuck off’ in response to being asked what was going on. Obviously the first few minutes saw a glut of comments on the posts condemning Chris for his actions and demanding he leave his post.
This isn’t such an unusual occurrence, asking for his head on a platter. I think the first time we saw calls for him to be sacked came after the fourth winless game, and week after week rather fickle fans have continued to call for him to go. Our esteemed Imps reporter John Pakey even ran a poll in the local paper.
Regarding progress on the field I can understand the frustration some people feel, but I can’t condone calls for his head. I think the fan base think we are somehow above this league and any manager coming in should get us out of it within a season or so. At very least they want to see a play off place which would be a top five finish.
However this league is arguably the toughest to gain promotion from in the whole football spectrum. Just two promotion spots to chase and an ever increasingly strong roster of teams chasing top five finish. If we look over at our fishy neighbours you’ll see that despite looking organised and strong for three or four years now they’re only one small step further ahead than us. The points gap might be ten, by the end of the season it might be fifty but if they finish second they still have the end of season lottery that is the play offs to navigate. We know all too well that qualifying for the play offs means very little unless you have the mettle to see it through. Our best side for two decades couldn’t get out of League Two. It’s not easy.
So to call for the managers head after two half seasons for his on pitch performance is irrational and a little reactionary. We’ve tried hiring and firing persistently and that got us in to this mess in the first place. A series of wrong appointments have meant we’ve made little progress as each new manager has a clear out and installs his own faces. No sooner has he got a side together and begun to mould them than he’s out on his ear and another comes in. This cycle has to be broken, and I firmly believe that Chris Moyses needs to be given his chance. His side are young and in areas inexperienced. The likes of Stanley, Sparrow and David Preece may have bags of experience but that doesn’t rub off in a week or two. Our squad needs time to settle down and play lots of football together on a regular basis. There’s going to be bumps along the way, and a quarter of the season winless is quite a bump. That said how will we improve the situation by clearing out and starting again? Maybe a new manager wouldn’t fancy Bradley Wood or Matt Rhead? Maybe we’d get a tinker man Holdsworth who (despite me actually liking him) threw buckets of shit at a wall and hoped one or two nuggets would stick.
What we need is a steady building of a squad, the misses from this season moved on and the hits retained for a year or two with subtle changes being made. It may sound ludicrous but I don’t actually think we’re that far away from having a play off challenging side. Maybe that’s why so many people are angry.
So this brings me full circle back to the swearing. If the Moyses out brigade concede that a reasonable and rational person can see that sacking CM isn’t justifiable for the poor run of results, surely they’ve got him on the swearing haven’t they?
Further facts began to emerge as a more neutral collection of fans began to comment. Yes Chris had swore, but it was in reaction to a barrage of abuse from the travelling faithful. He dropped the F bomb but not before having a few thrown at him, with a potential C bomb thrown in for good measure. He reacted and the aggressors ignored their own crimes and immediately got on his back. He’s a professional and he should know better, we pay our money we’re entitled to give our opinion.
Indulge me if you will. Let me take you back a year or two to a builders merchant in which I am the depot manager. This is a true story by the way, and hopefully gives context to the events from the Racecourse Ground. I intervene in a argument between a customer and a member of my staff. My staff member was very professional and took the abuse she received in good spirit, but the customer demanded to speak to me. He was incredibly aggressive and swearing in a threatening manner at me and my staff. I asked him to leave the premises and he did: now I made a mistake because as he did I muttered under my breath ‘fuck off and don’t come back’. I regretted it the second I realised that ‘under my breath’ actually came out as ‘loud and clear’. He came back at me and demanded an apology, threatened me with all sorts of action all the time swearing back at me. Eventually he left and obviously I regretted my actions. I phoned my boss and explained what had happened and what I’d said. I took the telling off, but at no point was my position questioned. I was defending myself and my staff.
The next day I closed the customers account and banned him from my store for threatening behaviour. I did’t care one iota if he spends £10k or not aggressive and abusive language is simply not tolerated. My boss felt exactly the same, simply paying his money did not give him the right to treat another human being in that manner. In his eyes he paid his money, he was entitled to express his opinion in any way he liked, but I feel very differently.
So when CM reacted to the abuse I have to admit, I get it. I get why he did, because as a hardworking man trying to do a job he should not have to put up with a barrage of abuse to his face and not be expected to react. I’m sure as soon as he did it he regretted it, but he’s a passionate man. However perhaps the fans should think on because I think it’s more likely that they get banned for aggressive behaviour than Chris Moyses gets the sack. Had he just come out with it after a polite enquiry things would be different, but that wasn’t the case. Immediately after the event however that was how it was represented. There’s always two sides to every story eh?
The next morning a image of a phlegm covered windscreen belonging to Chris emerged. I’ll steer clear of commenting on this, only saying that if it were football related then someone out there needs to take a long hard look at themselves.
So it’s on to Guiseley at the Bank on Saturday. No doubt the hate mob will be there in full force, as will some of the so called Moyses Mafia who take just as much criticism as the haters on social media at the minute. It seems Mr Moyses should be nicknamed Marmite, because you either love him or hate him (not because he goes nicely on toast). It has to be stated that we need a win from somewhere at present, anywhere will do. A scrambled 90th minute own goal would do, just to put some confidence back into the lads.
The odd thing is that throughout all this vitriol aimed at the gaffer very few of the players are coming in for any stick. We like Matt Rhead up top, Liam Hearn has come back with very little bad feeling being put his way. Even Alan Power, the usual knocking post when things go badly is coming out of it unscathed. The debate is centred firmly on the man who is working for free, the man who has brought some very good players to the club. If we’d pulled a few results out of the bag you could almost say it is managerial genius like Mourinho, taking the heat off his players and heaping it all on himself. My apologies to Chris but I don’t actually think it is by design!
Either way come Saturday he’ll still be in charge and I dare say whatever the result he will be the week after too. I’m happy to say I was still in charge of my depot a week after telling my aggressive customer to go forth and multiply, however he didn’t come back again. So please think on, paying your money doesn’t mean you have a right to act like an foul mouthed, uneducated moron.
Given my previous issues with blogs and interference with my working life I'd like to state that I have never told a customer to eff off in my current role