There was a lot of hype over the ‘Undercover: Football’s Dirty Secrets’ exposÃ© which was shown last night, where it was implied that several Premiership managers including Sam Allardyce wouldn’t be adverse to taking what is known as a ‘bung’ from players agents to sanction a successful move of a player to Bolton Wanderers.
Now it would be easy to ‘read in between the lines’ and jump on the bandwagon (especially as I’m not exactly a fan of the Walrus) but what I personally saw last night was something that did not show any actual proof of managers receiving bungs or illegal payments, but essentially a few agents boasting about giving managers, scouts and other people some favours like staying in a hotel for a few weeks!
But I suppose all the speculation and hype drummed up by the BBC was an attempt to boost the ratings of a show that needed viewers.
After watching the hour-long programme, I felt conned that I had wasted an hour of my time which could have been spent in the pub. A lot of hearsay and conjecture from agents – who everyone knows aren’t exactly the most trustworthy people in the world!
And why were other clubs and managers ‘blanked out’ of the show?
Is it because the agents were talking utter b*llocks and they would get sued if they even suggested these other teams and managers accepted bungs?
According to the documentary throughout the programme agents had named between 16/18 managers that would accept bungs. Without actually naming them it’s just pure speculation!
It seemed from the outset that the BBC had some sort of hidden agenda with Sam Allardyce they way they were specifically going after him!
And it was very hard to believe that the undercover reported ‘Knut’ was actually on the verge of giving a manager a Â£50,000 bung only for Mike Newell to go to the press and ruin there chances of completing the deal.
What a huge co-incidence!
But after the Newsnight programme ‘exposing Arsenal’s links with Beveren’ what are we to expect from the BBC these days?
Now I don’t doubt that there is probably some sort of corruption in the game – there have been high-profile incidents in Italy and Germany so why not in England? But I also doubt last night’s show was anything more than poor journalism.
Harry Redknapp who was shown on the programme has said that he has given his last interview to the BBC and he is also considering legal advice, as is Sam Allardyce. Which is only to be expected really…