Cod Almighty | Article
1 July 2006
Notts County? Who might they be?
"British and Dutch scientists have joined forces to excavate a unique dodo burial ground where the bones of hundreds and possibly thousands of birds have been preserved in marshland for more than 10,000 years. It will be the first time scientists have had access to well-preserved dodo remains that have remained untouched. At last, some light may be shed on a mysterious and emblematic creature that has come to epitomise how easy it is for man to wipe out a species."
Future generations of men in white coats may well be conducting similar exercises at provincial football stadia in England. Notts County have been around for ever but are currently limping along on a wing and a bleedin' prayer. The Germans tried to bomb them out in WWII; an estate agent named Aaron Scargill tried to name the hallowed ground after himself (before going bust just in time); 18 months in administration; umpteen relegations and promotions; but Notts County and Meadow Lane have both survived the lot. And now the poor old ground has to put up with herds of rugby players as Nottingham rugby club has contracted to play a few matches there. Herds of managers too – averaging one a season for the last decade. Stable they're not.
Despite topping the table once (in, errrm, August) County declined from 19th the previous season to finish up 21st in the league. So two crap seasons in a row, following on from an embarrassing relegation with the likes of Grimsby. Teetered on the brink. Stood at the edge of the abyss and looked down. Titter ye not.
Anticipate with relish
The wheelbarrow song. The old ones are the best, aren't they? They've been singing it since 1990. And when they sing it they never lose... so let's hear it, boys – you can't have sung it a lot lately.
Anticipate with dread
You worry that England's oldest league club will die. I like County, and can even tolerate their redeveloped stadium. At least they didn't move out to the edge of some industrial estate. Nice colours too.
The way forward
"There are currently no vacant positions within Notts County Football Club, but we are always on the lookout for new staff, particularly on the Catering side, and would appreciate anyone who wishes to send in their CV." The County official site has obviously failed to notice that the club is lacking a manager after Gudjon Thordarson walked out saying: "There are many reasons for this decision. I took this decision after meeting with the Notts County board of directors. I just feel we should go our separate ways. I wanted to take the club forward but there were so many wrong decisions taken by the board. Like yesterday for example, the club decided to close down the youth academy. One thing leads to another and you realise that the club is going nowhere. I felt I could not satisfy my ambition by staying at the club."
So the way forward rather depends on County getting a new manager. They have shortlisted four or five and have been haughtily interviewing them, "they" being chief executive Geoff Davey and his cronies. Davey said when asked about the recently deposed Exeter manager: "Alex Inglethorpe is not a name that we have considered for the job." So there. Unfortunately Thordarson released about eight players before he quit. A bit embarrassing really, as it sounds like the board might want some of them back. How will all turn out – not a feckin' clue.