YOU might wonder why a Dubliner and a rugby fanatic would follow an English club like Bury FC.
Indeed, they only club I ever followed on the football front was Manchester United having fallen in love with the team of Law, Best and Charlton.
So Bury FC?
Well, if you’d known my colleague Paul Thomas, you’d be following Bury FC too.
Paul worked with us in the Indo for a few short years.
Paul. Blaggo. He earned the nickname in his early days when, having been told by the gardai that there was a robbery in Dun Laoghaire, and having asked the garda to spell the name of the location, turned to our news editor, Padraig, and said: “Podrig. There’s been a blaggin’ in Dun Lageer.”
Paul loved Bury FC. And by the time he left Ireland, we loved Paul. And we loved Bury FC.
Now the club is to be thrown out of the English Football League and may very well go out of existence.
I’m heartbroken. And I know Paul’s family is too.
Why are they facing their end?
Money. It’s all about money.
The club owes a few million, maybe seven.
And attempts at a takeover have failed, not that the league did much to help or so it seems.
So what could have been done. What SHOULD STILL be done.
Just down the road from Bury there’s a city called Manchester.
It has two teams. Manchester United and Manchester City.
They are enormously successful.
So here’s what I think should happen.
I don’t expect the owners of the clubs to stump up. They don’t particularly give a damn about football. It’s all money and prestige for them.
But the players? The footballers?
If the players at Manchester United and Manchester City gave up their wages for ONE WEEK, the problem would be solved.
Maybe, just maybe some of them remember where they started, a small club, a struggling club. Maybe they just might realise there’s such a thing as “Payback Time.”
If they did Bury FC would live.
Football would look good.
Justice would be served.
And Blaggo, my friend, could look down from above…
PS. I’ve just discovered that Huddersfield Town will get £80m in “parachute payments” for finishing last in the Premiership last year. Good luck to them.
Bury FC won promotion last year and will go out of business for less than half that.
Football is killing itself. With cash.