Monday 19 November 2007

Wigan favourites for the drop!

Dave Whelan has lost control of his senses and is spending £3m in compensation to Birmingham City to take Steve Bruce off their hands; a man they have been contemplating sacking in recent weeks. Wigan are already up S**t Creek and they have just lost their paddle.

It's absolutely beyond me what anyone sees in Steve Bruce. Fine player though he was, he's been a manager for nearly ten years and has a paltry record. He showed an alarming lack of loyalty to his first few clubs, although Simon Jordan did at least manage to teach him a lesson after leaving Palace in the lurch. He's hung on at Birmingham for 6 years and managed his only notable success during that period in getting them promoted via the play-offs; hardly an over-achievement with the resources at his disposal. In the meantime we have had to listen to an ongoing diatribe about one of the "brightest young managers in the game" from a fickle media, as well as Steve Bruce's endless list of excuses why any failure by his side is always due to something other than them being beaten by the better team.

What you have to acknowledge about Brucey though is he needs no PR man to talk him up. Ever since he set-off in management he's been keen to play down suggestions that he'll one day end up at Manchester United or England manager, whilst always managing to do it in such a way as to leave you under no illusion that that's where he thinks he should be sooner rather than later.

In the circumstances, I think Bruce has jumped before he was pushed. Birmingham City might have delusions of grandeur in the Premier League but you need to be smoking strong herbs to see Wigan as progression. Star of the Future Stevie will be acutely aware of this and I'll bet he sees it as a stop-gap for something better. Expect no dramatic improvement in the Latics as they move closer to a return to Championship football. Exchanging places with Steve Bruce's Wigan would bring added satisfaction to a Charlton promotion, but you know he'll be jumping ship at next port. I only hope Dave Whelan makes contractual provision for £3m compensation in the event that anyone else is foolish enough to think Steve Bruce is a top class manager.

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