Ian Holloway: It has taken me 14 years to get this chairman so I can't lose him
They must make a fly-on-the-wall about Blackpool's season, but it will have to go out after the watershed
Sunday 22 August 2010
I have already released one book, but if I ever write anotherabout the last year at Blackpool, it would have to be a best-seller. What has gone on at our club is quite unbelievable.
In fact, a fly-on-the-wall documentary would be something else ... though they'd have to put it on after the watershed.
My chairman Karl Oyston stepped down as chairman and director this week. He is still at the club but is now the acting chief executive.
It doesn't really worry me. He just has a different title and nothing will change. But I would certainly have to reconsider my position if Karl left the club because he is the reason I took the Blackpool job, and he's the best person that I have worked for in 14 years of management.
One of his best traits is that he has never been trigger-happy. But if someone else were to come in, then they might be, especially if we take more beatings like the 6-0 defeat at Arsenal yesterday.
If you look at a couple of Wigan results last year, they got beaten by nine and eight goals. And Stoke, who are brilliant defensively, also had seven put past them. So – and I'm only being realistic here – we will probably suffer more big losses. If Karl is here that won't matter. But if he isn't and it is someone else's ego getting hurt, it might well matter. They might not see the reality of where we are, and what we are paying compared to what everyone else is paying. They might just say this Holloway bloke isn't good enough and get rid.
But not Karl. He is a realist, probably the biggest realist I've ever met in football. I have never enjoyed a job so much in my life because I've never had to look over my shoulder here.
I don't have to worry whatsoever about team selection or about what player I sign. He doesn't argue with me about whether any of my targets are any good or not. So what more can I ask? It's taken me a decade and a half to get a chairman like this and I don't want to lose him.
I'm such a turn-off on the telly
The biggest single difference between the Championship and the Premier League is the media coverage. It is absolutely scary. I thought that I was media-friendly but I'm not. Every interview I've done so far I've watched back and I look a miserable pig, so I clearly need to liven up. But I am just trying to concentrate on not tripping myself up and being called a madman and an idiot.
I need to fully focus on the football because it is going to be so hard to keep our heads above water this season, so that is why I'm being the way I am. The other differences when you move to the top League are obvious – the amount of people turning up for games and the quality of the pitches and stadia. It is quite fantastic. My lads are lucky to be playing on surfaces like Wigan and Arsenal and I hope they appreciate it.
I was sick with envy standing on the side, not allowed to get my boots on because I am too old and crusty.
A load of Blackpool fans have told me their proudest moment so far was seeing us on Match of the Day on the opening day and I can understand that. It was so long ago since Jimmy Armfield played his last game for the club, Blackpool's last match in the top division back in 1971. And it is even longer since the Seasiders won the FA Cup Final in 1953 and finished second two years later.
So I am delighted for the supporters that they are able to enjoy seeing us back in the top League again. I just hope they stay with us. It was so disheartening to see Wigan fans walking out at half-time last week. I don't want our fans to even dream of doing that. I want them to be solid through the bad times because there are going to be a few.
We have got a fantastic challenge ahead of us but as a group we all need to keep our peckers up, no matter what happens.
I'm inspired by the six appeal of Gunners
My pride is killing me after we lost by six at Arsenal. But well done to them. The football they played – how quick they were and how they moved the ball around – was an education.
I can't wait to watch the 90 minutes again so I can go to work on the training ground and help my lads improve. I'll coach my lads on their shape and see if we can emulate what Arsenal do because it is beautiful to watch.
The funny thing was that some of our football in the first half was really good. We knocked the ball around confidently and Gary Taylor-Fletcher could have made it 1-1 with a header.
Unfortunately the referee made a decision that was useless. He sent off Ian Evatt with the score at 1-0 and it changed the game. It ruined it as a spectacle and in the end I was delighted we only let six in because my boys can't live with a team like Arsenal when we've got 10 men. Am I down? Yes. And am I relieved that we'll only have to face Theo Walcott once more this season? Yes, because he was brilliant. But the very fact Blackpool are playing Arsenal in a League match at the Emirates fills me with pride. And well done to our fans, they were terrific all afternoon and didn't stop singing.
I've dealt with slimy agents, but nothing compares to our snake escaping
I want to move to Blackpool soon but finding a house big enough for my family is proving difficult. There's a reason for this. As well as four children, I have got three horses, two ducks, 40 chickens, two dogs and a snake. It is what you might call a lively household.
The snake is the pet I like least and that's putting it mildly. It's my son's and although it is beautiful to look at, I am completely and utterly terrified of snakes, so it is not a great thing to have in the house.
It is a boa constrictor, about two-foot long at the moment but it's going to grow to seven foot.
Why people want to keep them I do not understand, because it is an absolute predator.
Don't ever ask me to feed it. That movement it makes when it hammers its prey, I jump a mile.
I think they should be in the jungle rather than someone's house, but it is what my son is into and who am I to tell him he can't have one?
A week ago the worst possible thing happened – it got out of its tank. Our dogs are only little and my wife was scared stiff that it might go for them.
My son wasn't there to help us find it but we eventually cornered it under the fridge.
It was a nightmare couple of hours and it is just a pity that I can't put it on the transfer list. I'd even give it a free.
But you can see how difficult our animal menagerie makes it to find a house and, on top of that, myself and my wife Kim don't know the areas surrounding Blackpool, so we have spent most of this last week driving round late into the night looking at different places.
I haven't had any joy just yet but I will find somewhere because I do not want another Christmas Eve like last year, when I found myself sat on my own in a flat in Blackpool. That was hideous.
I drove to Bath to see my family after training with the players on Christmas Day but that is a long way – so moving house is all there is for it, even if the snake has to come as well!
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