I sympathise with Zola who, when he was asked how he thought Trillion Trophy Asia would react to Birmingham City’s 1-4 defeat to QPR, replied “What can I say to the owner?”
I know what I’d like to say to some people involved with the club. I’d like to say thank you to the unsung heroes, the staff members who have kept the club running through the recent turbulence. I’d like to thank Roger Lloyd for staying until the bitter end of the QPR game, long after Panos Pavlakis had disappeared from the VIP seating area. He not only stayed to the end; he was also willing to talk to fans.
I’d like to ask Panos why he is not communicating any more. While Ernst and Young were sorting out the mess in Hong Kong, Panos was the spokesman for the club and was happy to talk to fans. I don’t think he’s said much since the transfer window closed and the new signings failed to improve our results. Does that mean that TTA aren’t giving him anything to say to us?
Gianfranco Zola seems like a nice man and looked so miserable in the interview after the game that dishing out criticism would feel like kicking him when he’s down. If I had the chance I think I’d suggest that he should try what he mentioned in the interview, he should try reducing the work the players have to do. My impression is that Zola has tried to pump a lot of information about tactics into them and they are under great pressure to perform. Working them harder hasn’t produced results so why not try giving them a day off and encouraging them to relax a little?
The players are professionals and in interviews they are obliged to say that they like the style of play that Zola is trying to bring to the club. I suspect that that they may express different views in private. I’d like to tell them that I’ll support them as long as they are wearing a Blues shirt and I have supported players much worse than them. I’ve seen Blues lose to Kidderminster Harriers. I have seen them leading 4-1 against Swindon with 20 minutes to go and end up losing 4-6. I stayed to the end of our 0-8 loss to Bournemouth in 2014. I’m not going to stop supporting my team just because they don’t play well.
But what can I say to Paul Suen Cho Hung and the directors of BCFC? I don’t want to say, “Sack Zola!” because I have no confidence that they would appoint someone better to replace him. Another managerial change might help but it could bring more turbulence and more problems. I think that the main thing I want to tell the board is that they should talk to us. I agree with what Daniel wrote about communication:
“Communications between the club and the fans should be about sending a message about what is happening; keeping fans advised of how the club is looking to progress and meet new challenges.” This hasn’t been happening recently.
And what can I say to other long suffering Blues fans? Some of you reading my personal views expressed above, will disagree with what I’ve said but I hope that won’t make you say I’m not a real Blues fan. Let’s try to stick together even though we will never agree about everything.