Well, we had all hoped that the issue would be brought up, and we had all hoped that Ange would know how to deal with it when it was. We needed haven’t worried on either score, and especially not the latter one.
The manager dealt with it brilliantly.
Finally, he was asked directly about the garbage being flung at Kyogo Furuhashi.
Referring, with biting sarcasm, to those accusing the Japanese of being a cheat as “brave soldiers” he points out that Kyogo is a small player going up against bigger guys every week.
But he reserved his special contempt for those who write the nonsense, the “ignorant people” as he described them who he doesn’t want to get into any sort of debate with.
“Who are these brave people, these warriors, who are accusing people, who are out there?” he asked. “Kyogo is the size of a jockey. He’s playing against guys almost a foot taller than him. All these brave warriors on the outside casting aspersions, are they?”
When asked specifically about the contention that Kyogo should be brought up before the SFA, he was even more scathing, and cutting, in his remarks.
“I haven’t read it. I won’t read it. If you end up in arguments with ignorant people, you’ll eventually become one of them so I kind of ignore those kind of narratives … I think Kyogo has been great for our football club and I think he’s been great for Scottish football. I’ll be surprised if anyone wouldn’t want someone of his character and playing ability in their club or their league.”
And he fired back one last time. “Who are all these brave soldiers sitting in their studios or lounge rooms or wherever they are, throwing these narratives across the way?”
Because none of these gutless wonders would ever mention any of this within his earshot.
Not only did he stand up for the player, but he called them out for what they are.
Desperate little men playing desperate little games but too afraid to say it where he could hear them and call them out.
Not debate, because he knows it isn’t worth that.
Call them out. Which was precisely what he did anyway today.
Well done Ange, and we can finally put that issue to bed.