Saturday, 12 July 2008

Remember Tom Finney?

I DIDN’T know whether to laugh or cry. Poor old, long-suffering Ronaldo a slave?
A slave on a miserly £120,000 a week at Manchester United ..... for playing football. You poor thing.
Just what planet is this young man on?
I suppose Sir Alex twisted your arm up your back and gave you Chinese burns until you finally cracked under torture and signed that new five-year contract?
Listen. If Sir Alex wants to make me his slave on £120,000 a week, I’d even throw in the ironing and cleaning for free.
It’s a good job Ronaldo wasn’t around in the 1920’s when the maximum wage was only £9. Footballers then had little rights. Yes, they were, in effect, slaves.
Ronaldo would do well to take a leaf out of Tom Finney's book. He worked as a plumber to supplement the £14 a week he earned at Preston. Finney went on to win 76 England caps and scored 30 goals. He retired in 1960 with a persistent groin injury after bagging 187 goals in 433 appearances for Preston.
He never won the championship or any other trophy as far as I can recall. Yet he was remarkably loyal and even rejected an offer from Palermo that included a £10,000 signing-on fee - a fortune way back in 1952.
It all changed, of course, in the 1960’s when Fulham paid the great Johnny Haynes £100-a-week and George Eastham won the right to move from Newcastle to Arsenal.
I’m still not sure about Bosman. But I am sure that things have got completely out of hand.
The amount of money being paid to Premiership footballers today is obscene.
Wayne Rooney, for instance, at 22-years-of-age, is reported to have got through a staggering £5m last year. To be fair, he did get married! He spent £3m on just 50 guests, who were flown in by five private jets, for his wedding to childhood sweetheart Coleen McLoughlin.
Her dress alone is rumoured to have cost up to £200,000, while £100,000 went up in smoke for the must-have fireworks.
Then there was Westlife. And don’t even get me started on the £100,000 his-and-hers rings they took back to their Cheshire mansion.
Good job young Wayne picks up around 130 grand a week from Man Utd come rain or shine then, isn’t it?
Although the pair - said to be worth £35m - did cop a few bob from selling the rights to the wedding on the Italian Riviera.
OK! magazine apparently paid £2.5m for exclusive access to the big day. Yes, the world has gone mad.
Like I said, with half the world starving, obscene is the word.

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