LATEST EPISODE: Critical Friends
Recorded on the night that it was announced that Billy McKinlay was being replaced by SLAVIŠA JOKANOVIĆ as the Head Coach of Watford FC, Jon Jason and Mike chat about the extraordinary whirlwind that has been the last 37 days in Watford history.
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Saturday, 31 July 2010
With continued uncertainty around who will own the football club and the ongoing financial constraints, it’s fair to say that all is not 100% rosy in the WD18 garden. If you look hard enough though, as in all aspects of life, you can find some positives.
I have written before about the reassurance provided by the presence of Graham Taylor and Malky Mackay at our club. Both good, loyal men. Watford people. I have also spoken of my pride in the Academy and the clubs ability to bring through home grown players – a story that recently received national recognition in The Guardian (read it here – http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2010/jul/17/england-world-cup-watford). It’s not just the big, well publicised projects that count though. It can be the little things that make the biggest difference.
On Saturday I was surrounded by little things, well, little people, as I took my daughter and nephew to the Watford FC open day in Bushey. I’ve never been to such an event before and had limited expectations. I guessed the worst that could happen was they’d get a picture with Harry the Hornet and would probably drop their overpriced ice cream on the floor. As it happened, my daughter was petrified of Harry and the ice creams were a bargain. Cheap Solero’s were far from the highlight though.
For the duration of the event, amongst the children, parents, burger vans and exhibits, were clusters of young, athletic men in smart tracksuits. Stopping whenever approached, signing autographs and smiling for photographs. For the entirety of this sunny Sunday afternoon the full Watford squad were face to face with their adoring young fans. For some it got better – modelling the new away kit for the first time alongside Aidy Mariappa and John Eustace, or participating in a game of football with Danny Graham, Scott Loach and Liam Henderson. Instead of watching their idols, youngsters were passing to them.
Now perhaps I’ve gone soft in my old age, or see the world through different eyes now that I’m a Dad, but I can’t be alone in thinking what a fantastic event this was. By giving supporters unlimited and unrestricted access to the players, those that visited were able to take away with them memories and souvenirs that they will treasure for a lifetime. Some will have scored a goal past Scott Loach. Some will have hugged John Eustace. Some will have pictures with Lloyd Doyley and footballs signed by Malky. Tangible, happy memories.
In an era when heroes, whether it be film stars, musicians or sports people seem to be further and further removed from the real world in which we inhabit, it was a joy to see our heroes bringing so much enjoyment to so many.
I don’t profess to know what goes on at other clubs, but I doubt many of those thousands of kids running around in Man United, Chelsea and Arsenal shirts have ever had a kick about with Wayne Rooney, Nikola Anelka or Cesc Fabregas. Well done to Watford for recognising and rewarding us – the fans, with a day to remember.
We’re Watford. We don’t have much, but we make the most of what we’ve got.
Keep the faith, stay positive and Come on You Horns!
Tuesday, 20 July 2010
It's going to be another memorable season, but what will we be remembering it for?
Saturday, 17 July 2010
After recording the micro-podcast Mike bumped into Danny Graham, and as you can see from the photo he has a larger then normal nose.
It is broken and Mike said that Danny wanted to continue but staff and ref wouldn't allow him. They were quick to substitute him. Not worth the risk at this point of pre-season. He was still in high spirits after the game and will know more about the injury in 5 days when the swelling has down. Will probably make him a doubt for the Barnet and Northampton pre-season games.
As I drove home down St Albans high street I saw Liam Henderson on his mobile out side Nandos. He must of been having a celebratory Peri-Peri Chicken - the meal of kings!!
Oh and the lovely lady in the middle is Mike and Danny is Mike's 18 month old daughter Florence. The game was at her very first football match. She loved it and is very much looking forward to meeting Harry Hornet on her first visit to Vicarage Road!
Monday, 12 July 2010
We bring to an end of the Next Goal Wins World Cup. Our attempts to see how the World Cup might turn out if we'd gone with the old play ground rule of last one to score wins. - pointless maybe, but it made for an interesting analysis.
The Semi-Finals gave us an all South American final. A long range Maximiliano Pereira effort gave Uruguay the victory over close rivals Paraguay; and a Pablo Contreras header secured a surprise win for Chile over the Germans, to end the European challenge. So it's Paraguay vs Germany on Saturday for Third Place. And the big one, the Final was Uruguay vs Chile.
And who was our eventual winner??
The Golden Boot is shared by Alexis Sanchez, Luis Suarez, Didier Drogba & Asamoah Gyan. Further proof that the Southern Hemisphere is streets ahead in this form of the game!!!
If you want to see the full run down of The Next Goal Wins World Cup then have a look at our Wallchart.
For a large image click here
Tuesday, 6 July 2010
I have struggled to imagine the situation that would involve me taking part in a World Cup Quarter Final, but despite this I’m pretty sure that if I found myself in that position, I’d have reacted the same. My reason for being on the goal line would already be established and clear in my mind. To stop the opposition scoring. Mission received and understood. The next thing I know, the ball is heading towards the back of the net. I realise I can’t stop it with my head and this is where the involuntary reaction kicks in. Before I know it, I’ve swatted the ball to safety, I’ve been red carded and Ghana have a kick to progress.
Friday, 2 July 2010
So I've recorded a chat with Steve Hermon who is the commentator for Walsall football club. Click below is hear the chat, which I hope it gives you some information about our new goalkeeper Rene Gilmartin.
- Rookery Jon