Friday, 28 October 2016

talkSport - Katrien Meire

I listened in today and was disappointed overall.  I am not a talkSport listener (more a Radio 5 man) so don't know the show and am unfamiliar with the format. Jim White seemed prepared to ask hard questions but the trouble was he clearly lacked enough knowledge on the subject to follow-up or challenge Meire on her answers. Danny Murphy and Dean Saunders as guests added little for me and, if anything, they diluted the questioning by giving us the benefit of their experience which wasn't really relevant; Saunders seemed to think that all that was missing was a clear conversation between Meire and the supporters, whilst Murphy thought Slade should bear more of the blame and that results were the underlying issue.

If this was an opportunity for Meire to turn a new leaf and seek the real help she needs from the most knowledgeable fans she has spurned for two and a half years, she failed completely by once again laying out the long line of excuses and half-truths that have angered all of those who know better. It's very clear to me that she will do absolutely anything to cling to her position and that Duchatelet is prepared to back her no matter because her cares more about her as an individual than he does Charlton Athletic Football Club. Jim White's first attack was on the theme of how unsuccessful we have been and how much resentment there is to her which questioned her performance. The retort was the lame 'I wouldn't still be here if I was useless' line but Jim missed the open goal to follow-up about Roland's detachment and his relationship with her as a fellow Belgian and family friend (I do wonder if they are actually related - it would explain a lot).

The rest of the interview looked to me like she was answering questions she had been given. She was still unsteady and hesitant at times and said things I suspect she now regrets, like referring to the relationship with supporters as "a war." She must also know that by trying to take the moral high ground by saying she has "even offered to talk with CARD" may score points with ill-informed listeners of other clubs but will rile Charlton fans who know the history and make future communication even harder, if that's possible.

The big issue with the interview is that it didn't get beyond tactical questioning. Why no direct approach about Duchatelet's long term strategy following the failure of FFP? The linked question about us effectively being a player-farm where the emphasis is more on player return than first team results is actually the heart-of-the-matter. Two questions here would have had Meire floundering because they don't have a positive first-team strategy and the focus is now all on developing and selling young players as quickly as possible. The first team exists primarily to get them air time and maintain a facade of ambition..

In a way it's sad that she doesn't even recognise that CARD exists to remove Duchatelet (the clue is in the name Katrien) and not attempt to help her cling to power or soften the financial blow for Duchatelet. On that point, I was angered that Jim White didn't know enough to call out that all the money wasted by Duchatelet over the past three years has not been funded by him yet but leveraged as debt. He will likely have to fork out for this one day but there is an important distinction to be made at this point and we need to keep making it.

I think Rick Everett may get a right-to-reply slot tomorrow but it's a bit after the horse has bolted. Mere was apparently insistent on no questions from fans whilst she was there (maybe she's not that stupid after all).

My flag for Saturday has arrived. Let's make it another uncomfortable afternoon for Meire in a place where her lies and spin are transparent and where she is seen as the failing clueless incompetent that she is.

1 comment:

Chris Hickey said...

It was always likely to be a damp squib, the key is to go after her on the FFP rules and her vision for CAFC as a feeder club. This is the issue for wider fans, the ins and outs of her stupidity at the helm are little different from what's happened at Coventry, Leeds, Sheffield Utd, A. Villa and a host of others.