As regular readers will know very well, I maintain good relationships with a couple of Sevco bloggers who drip-feed me certain tit-bits when they have information to share which would be unpalatable to their own core audiences.
Tonight one of them emailed me and told me that there was much back-slapping and hand-shaking in the Sevco directors box tonight on the full-time whistle. They are now praying that Murty’s team can get them to the promised land of three (wins) in a row.
As you all know, last night the club published its accounts outside of normal office hours, when the media were all finished writing up their pre-match articles for today’s games. In one of them, Graeme Murty was compared to Zinedine Zidane.
This ludicrous story was no mere piece of Sevconite fluff; it was paving the road for something bigger. The papers this past week have been full of Murty stories, and if you think that’s not a sign of something going on you haven’t been paying attention.
For those Ibrox boardroom back-slappers this was a very good day indeed. Celtic’s comprehensive win over St Johnstone has damaged Wright’s reputation; his team sits in seventh this evening. Any clamour for him to be given their vacant manager’s job has died. On top of that, McInnes couldn’t secure a win for Aberdeen in what some in the media think might be his final game in charge of the club. They might have missed its real significance today; he looks like a bottler and someone who has yet to react positively to Ibrox overtures.
And that all plays neatly into the narrative, which can be neatly summarised as “Graeme Murty; this man deserves a chance.” If he can lead to them that third win on the bounce – at home, against ninth placed Hamilton in a fortnight – the job is his to lose.
To anyone who studies this dispassionately and who has a single working brain-cell that move would just never fly, but you watch as the narrative builds. The real question is, could the club see this out for another fortnight? Would fans clamour for an answer before the next game? I’d say that’s already partly taken care of with all the talk of the board being in no hurry, of them taking their time, of them planning carefully and making “the right choice.”
But as their accounts prove, there’s neither a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out. They are desperate to find an option that is palatable to at least some of the fans and dirt cheap to boot and as the new guy will essentially have to work with what he’s got they need someone willing to work with limitations, and for whom this is a “dream job.”
Murty thinks anyone would be mad to turn the job down; not only is he making his pitch but he’s making it easy for the board to lie to their fans and tell them “we looked everywhere, we had many options, but ultimately he deserves until the end of the season.”
That’s their way of saying “we need to get through this until season ticket renewals are going out.” If Murty has done well – however they define that – they can send the packs into the world with confidence. If he’s been a disaster they can announce he’s leaving at the end of the campaign and make some flaky “jam tomorrow” promise to the fans.
You can see why the idea has appeal.
Believe me, they are praying they can do this and get away with it.