Amid all the glitz, glamour and endless tabloid coverage of every miniscule detail of the Premier League, how come stories such as this //tinyurl.com/n2dz3s don’t get flagged more? Just reading it through makes me mildly ashamed to be so easily swept along watching the top flight.
Sure, there are some examples of excellent behaviour by more famous clubs and players, and many have given the proceeds from their 10-years-of-service testimonial matches to charities (a trend I believe Sunderland’s Niall Quinn started, though notably Shearer, Solskjaer, and goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen have all done the same). But testimonials date back to the era when players were not well paid, and were a way of rewarding loyal service. These days players retire with a healthy-enough nest egg in any case.
And yes, Premiership clubs have adopted charities of their own, and no doubt hand out a careful percentage of their turnover to local good causes, but I’m afraid after reading about Baker and Stockport, that sort of organised PR stunt leaves a rather ash-like taste in my mouth.
I will count myself an admirer of The Hatters from this day onward. Although that will be suspended if they draw Bristol City in the FA Cup.