Ian Holloway: I enjoy chess match with Moyes, who must be next United manager
Sunday 07 November 2010
I looked a right wally during our game with Everton yesterday. It was 2-2 going into stoppage time and Marlon Harewood poked the ball past Tim Howard and scored a "winner".
I went berserk on the touchline and did a little dance down the steps in the dugout... then turned round and realised it had been disallowed. I am blaming our crowd for that. They enjoy themselves far too much and are way too loud. I think they should be a bit quieter in future so I don't look such a fool!
I enjoyed every minute of yesterday's game. It felt like I was having a game of chess with David Moyes. We both made switches during the match and tried to outfox each other and in the end it was a fair result, though I thought we just edged it. It is terrific that we are simply on the same pitch as a team like Everton, playing in the Premier League, and getting a result.
I'm still a little disappointed Marlon's late goal was chalked off. I think we have had some very strange decisions go against us this season but I'm not going to complain about the referee. I can't afford to. I've already had one fine this season and if you asked the fourth official yesterday he would tell you I am doing my best to stay calm. We were having a great laugh at one point so I'm doing my best. So are my team and I couldn't be more proud of how they are continuing to adapt to life in the top division.
Moyes is one of my favourite managers and he is destined for even bigger things. I heard Sir Alex Ferguson talk about David as someone who could replace him when he retires. In all honesty I'd be surprised if anyone other than David becomes Manchester United's next manager.
He is top drawer. The job he has done at Everton is outstanding and he has done it without the resources that would be in place at United. But more important than that, I believe he is a chip off the old Fergie block. He has the character to be the United boss. If Everton don't get any financial backing, he has more or less taken them as far as he can.
Sir Alex rates him highly. He must have done because he wanted to take him as his assistant at one point. Who can argue with the main man about who he wants as his successor?
David ticks all the boxes. It speaks volumes that he has been a Premier League manager at the same club for eight years. He has left me standing for years. I remember vying for promotion with him when I was at Bristol Rovers and he was at Preston. He got promoted, I didn't and look what he's done since. He went galloping on; I ran out of diesel.
Blue is the colour of champs
Do I think Chelsea are unbeatable and have the title wrapped up? No I don't. We're going to catch them! I want that Ancelotti's head on a block by the end of the season after what he did in the first half against us earlier this season. I should have attacked them but we were 4-0 down – they just got lucky, that's all!
Being serious, they will take some stopping, but you can rest assured that Manchester United, especially with their genius gaffer winning the Rooney saga, will be there or thereabouts. It will probably be a two-horse race, though Arsenal are a fantastic side and they could be involved.
There is no doubting Chelsea are the team to beat. There is hardly a weakness. Ancelotti has really added something to them. I don't know him but he is so imperious – he has been there, seen it, done it.
Their players seem to have gelled. And as for Drogba, well anything is possible with him in your team. Don't write United off though. They don't normally buy in January but Sir Alex might go for a striker.
If Alex and Harry had backed my idea, we'd have avoided Nani nonsense
I have had a thoroughly enjoyable week. As well as our draw yesterday, we got our first Premier League home win when we beat West Bromwich Albion 2-1 on Monday night, and although a few people thought we should have won by more – because our opponents were reduced to nine men – I'm not bothered: it still says "Blackpool win" in the record books.
When I got home after the game I switched the TV on to have a look at the League table. We were on the top page on Ceefax. Incredible!
Can we stay up there? Who knows, but it is remarkable what the lads are doing. They are outplaying people who are on eight times the money and doing it consistently.
The more results we get, the more their belief will grow. I spent the remainder of the week watching other matches on the telly and was pleased to see Tottenham get a win because Harry Redknapp needed cheering up after what happened at Old Trafford last weekend.
No wonder he was frustrated and said what he did afterwards because everyone knows Nani's goal was nonsense. However, by the letter of the law, the referee Mark Clattenburg – who is excellent, by the way – was right because he never blew his whistle. But again the controversy could so easily have been avoided.
As readers of this column know, I keep campaigning for the fourth official to have a monitor in the technical area. If that was the case he'd have been able to say: "That was handball, ref, blow your whistle".
The funny thing is that I was going on about this at the first-ever meeting of the PremierLeague managers I went to, before the season started, and Harry and Sir Alex Ferguson were there. Little old me was piping up about the fourth official idea and they were both telling me to shut up or else the meeting would last all night.
Harry was laughing at me, saying "You're spot on, son". I was going "Well yes, I am", but they wouldn't let me keep talking about it. But then by the end of it Sir Alex was screaming at the bloke who has charged him so many times and I said: "Hang on, Sir Alex, you're talking about referees but if you backed my idea we would not be talking about decisions in the first place and you wouldn't get fined."
It's true. Instead we could hear Sir Alex, one of the greatest managers, talk about strategy and tactics, which is what we want to listen to him talk about. But at the moment that won't happen. He and the rest of us will carry on getting fined for moaning about refereeing decisions that should be outlawed by technology.
Thank God the FA didn't charge Harry, though. It would have been unbelievably harsh, and wrong.
Hoopla over Hoops is justified
Every time I look at the Championship table I swell with pride. It is because QPR are sitting proudly in the top two and nothing would give me more pleasure than to see my old club get back in the Premier League.
I was manager there, and one of my biggest claims to fame is that they didn't go bust. They were the biggest club to go into administration at the time. It all went horribly wrong and I was left holding the baby. The bathwater was still in. I was thinking: "Oh my God, what am I going to do?"
So I am delighted that my bit as a player and manager means they are still in existence and are now thriving.
Neil Warnock deserves a huge amount of credit. He is a top-class manager. Look how many promotions he has got, look how relaxed he is now. What a fantastic job he is doing.
I knew the shenanigans behind the scenes would stop when Neil got there because he would not have taken the job if he wasn't going to be completely in charge. Those players know they are working for someone who will not allow standards to drop. The signings he made are outstanding. He has brought in Paddy Kenny, who has won things, and Shaun Derry from Crystal Palace, who is as hard as nails.
Leaders are what Neil has added. Those lads have been there, done it and worn the T-shirt. With the flair they've got, I can only see them getting better. I'd be ecstatic if the club made the Premier League, and not just for Neil but for his assistant Keith Curle. Myself and Curley go back a long way, and a big shout out to him. He is loving it at the minute and I hope the club's success continues.
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