One of the reasons that football spread from the playing fields of public schools to the working classes, was that it was thought to be good for them. Clerics and others concerned for the welfare of working men thought that playing football was a healthy way to use time that might otherwise be wasted in gambling, drinking or other dubious pursuits. The game became popular and attracted spectators. And, of course, the spectators found that watching football could be combined very easily with gambling, drinking and other dubious pursuits.
Picking a new manager is somewhat of a gamble. I hope that whoever is involved in choosing the next manager of Birmingham City is carefully considering all the possibilities. But nobody can guarantee success; football is too unpredictable. As always with Birmingham City, I hope for the best but fear the worst. And I won’t be making any bets on who the next manager will be.
Football attracts owners who gamble, who spend money to get promoted to or to stay in the Premier League. Some win and some lose. Carson Yeung gambled in the casinos of Macau, on the stock exchange and on Birmingham City staying in the Premier League. If he had been luckier and Birmingham City had stayed up, it might have been so different. Fans might be singing his praise. If he had brought success to their club, it is unlikely they would have condemned his gambling, drinking or other dubious pursuits.