Middlesbrough chief executive Keith Lamb (right) announced that the club have gone ahead and named Gareth Southgate as their new manager even though he lacks the required coaching qualifications and is completely in violation of league rules. One wonders if perhaps it is an effort to one-up Newcastle’s slightly more diplomatic attempt at the same thing with Glenn Roeder.
Lamb told the club’s official website, www.mfc.co.uk: ‘Middlesbrough and Gareth should not suffer because he has had such a successful career at club and international level.
‘Until recently Gareth has spent his summers serving his country as a player. It makes little sense such players should be denied rare opportunities like the one he now has simply because he hasn’t had the chance to gain the qualifications.’
Right, right. It makes little sense that the club and Southgate should be denied an opportunity just because it’s against the rules. In fact, it makes little sense that Boro shouldn’t be allowed to sign whichever non-EU players they want just because they don’t have work permits, or refuse to pay wages to any players for six months if they don’t feel like it, or enslave a legion of Lebanese children to bathe and feed Keith Lamb grapes and wine.
The FA need to stop being a bunch of whimpering scabs, pull their collective finger out and start taking some action against clubs who are running about doing whatever they feel without any fear of significant punishment. It’s bad enough if Chelsea are happy to violate rules and just pay the fines, but when Middlesbrough sticks two fingers at the rules – it’s time to make some changes.