Blackpool's Ian Holloway calls the bluff of Premier League's flawed integrity and hands them a dilema

Ian Holloway is seen by many as the lovable clown of the Premier League, who makes lengthy analogies, sometimes including a taxi and a less than attractive girl, to describe his team’s performances.

He is a welcome change from the clichéd comments that most managers spew out as they continually ‘look forward to the next game,’ but to claim he is no more than a circus act is doing him a great disservice.

Seemingly destined to be heading straight back from whence they came, the Seasiders have confounded their critics and expectation by playing free flowing attacking football, winning games and being a pleasure to watch in the process and that is a credit to Holloway.

This was again the case on Wednesday night against Villa, when Holloway made ten changes to the side that drew with Everton and his second-string were only denied a draw by a late James Collins header.

Blackpool’s poetical manager could be in hot water though with the Premier League for his decision to field such a different team, as he could be considered to have threatened the integrity of the game, as Wolves were deemed to have done last season when they were slapped with a suspended £25,000 fine after fielding a weakened team against United.

The Premier League is understood to be investigating Holloway’s decision according to the BBC, leaving Holloway Understandably upset that the men atop the money have appointed themselves as his management superiors.

He told the BBC he would “pack it in” if he was punished and declared: “I’ve got every right to do what I like.”

“I’m manager of Blackpool and I manage the players how I want. If some bright spark from the Premier League wants to tell me who I can pick then come and have a cup of coffee and you’ll probably get it chucked in your lap.

“Let them try and fine me, it’s an absolute disgrace. I’ll show the Premier League. We were a credit to football, and let the Premier League try to tell me otherwise.”

Far from being handed a whipping by their statistically superior opposition, the team Blackpool fielded worried Villa and they were rewarded with two goals in what was an entertaining spectacle of attacking play that in no way was a disservice to the game.

“We’ve got four games in 12 days and the lads I’ve played every week are struggling to keep up the level” He added, surprisingly without the use of an analogy.

“How dare anyone tell me the players I’ve been working with, I can’t give them a chance. Tonight they have enhanced their reputation.”

The rule imposed by the Premier League is supposed to preserve the integrity of the game, but instead has only been utilised to exaggerate the governing body’s detachment from the game and horrendous double standards.

Big clubs like Arsenal, United and Chelsea have consistently shuffled their pack, as they look to juggle challenge for silverware across many different competitions and have done so without fear of retribution.

It’s a necessary part of modern football; particularly at this time of year when the fixture list is heavily congested and is done so to ensure that the team is competitive for the whole season and not just the initial sprint at the start.

If the Premier League does decide to fine Holloway and he sticks to his word and walks, the big wigs will have lost a great character and refreshing attraction in top flight football and in doing so will have failed in their initial mission statement to preserve the integrity of the league, as their decision will only expose what a money making farce it really is.

Tags: Blackpool, Premier League

Share this article

PlanetPie 9 December 2010 at 1:35pm

yep, I normally love Ian Holloway. A proper character. However he’s recently been a bit of an Alex Ferguson butt plug. He should shut his gob a bit and concentrate on his own team. It’s hard work though for him obviously. If they thro their games against Utd I’ll be writing to the West Country eejit.

Leave a comment

Chris Waddle – The French Way (1993)
Aston Villa Season Review 1991 - 1992 Denmark 2 Germany 0 (Euro 92 final) Saint and Greavsie (April 18 1992)