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Martin v Martin: Villa clash to be Jol's last game?


Usually I couldn’t give a monkey’s about the goings-on at the little club at the wrong end of Seven Sisters Lane. But I must confess, I’m rather looking forward to their game against Martin O’Neill’s Aston Villa this evening, as it could well be Martin Jol’s swansong.

The battle of the Martins is live on Setanta Sports 1 at 8pm, for those of you who subscribe. And for anyone who doesn’t, I’m sure there will be some local hostelry screening the game - what better way to spend a Monday evening than seeing the Spuds cementing their place in the relegation zone and finally saying goodbye to the chief potato head?!

And while I’m on the subject of the Light Weight Lane hierarchy shooting themselves in the foot, did anyone else catch yesterday's News Of The World story about their commercial department interfering in the sponsors’ Man Of The Match choice?

According to the paper, Tottenham Hopeless officials blocked their sponsors from giving the Man Of The Match award for last week’s Carling Cup game against Middlesbrough to Jermain Defoe. The England striker has angered Jol by stalling on signing a new contract. As a result, the Spuds hierarchy persuaded sponsors he should not be given the accolade because he had left the ground after being substituted - despite Defoe sitting just yards away in a foyer adjacent to the sponsors’ lounge.

But the lunacy doesn’t stop there...

When the sponsors capitulated and nominated scorer Gareth Bale, they were reportedly told by a Light Weight Lane official that Tom Huddlestone would be more worthy because he needs a confidence boost.

If the story is true, what a shocking way to deal with your sponsors. More importantly, what a disgraceful way to treat your players. I doubt whether Defoe will want to stay a Spuds player having read the story, Bale will be furious that he didn’t pick up the award instead, while Huddlestone’s sympathy vote certainly won’t act as the confidence boost it was intended to.

Do they really think that Jose Mourinho would ever dream of taking on such a losing cause? Top four? Champions League? They really are having a laugh.

Let’s hope that a win for Villa tonight will send Martin Jol to a villa of his own for a prolonged holiday.

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Posted by Gordon Masson on October 1, 2007 1:00 PM in News
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