Whilst some in the media were writing flowery tributes to Graeme Souness after he and Sky decided to have a “mutual” parting of the ways, others were more circumspect.
They didn’t contradict that version; they just didn’t bother to comment on it at all. I am guessing that there were some in the media business who were well aware that it was not “mutual.”
That word gets thrown about a lot these days.
Whenever someone like Souness leaves a high-profile post we read that word used.
It’s like Kilmarnock and Lafferty coming to a “mutual” decision to tear his contract up. They ought to have done it sooner, but eventually the realisation that they were better off without him in the building became too obvious to ignore.
Last week, The Mooch was using the same word to describe the impending departures of Kent and Morelos. There’s very little “mutual” in that, as was evidenced by his spitting fury at the weekend when he slammed the striker whilst confirming his departure.
Mutual. Yes. Except that it so very rarely is mutual, and in the case of Souness departing Sky it now appears that it was anything but.
Not a single one of us is going to shed any tears for him either.
The last couple of times this blog was writing about Souness he was calling our fans “the unacceptable face of Scottish football.” What bigoted tripe that was. The next time we wrote about him was when he bizarrely suggested that early VAR decisions had benefited our club.
Souness is a bitter, bigoted throwback to a bygone era in the game, and like others from that era he should have been in retirement yonks ago.
What does he offer now except sound and fury?
He has very little understanding of the modern game … and no wish to adapt himself to it.
One of the biggest changes is the prominent role women play in it now, and he certainly had no interest in accommodating himself to that particular change. And it’s this, ironically enough, instead of his stone-cold and obvious, undisguised bias and hatred for our club which has done for him. You can hate Celtic and still have a media career; plenty do.
Unlike some, I don’t believe that it was a manufactured controversy when he was widely and roundly criticised for his “it’s a man’s game” remarks.
He knew exactly what he was doing, he knew exactly what the words coming out of his mouth meant sitting next to a top women’s player.
He was sly about it, but the reactions of those in the studio and the football community as a whole are pretty clear; everybody recognized what he was up to and what his words actually meant.
Souness has always been a brave man when he’s blustering.
But the mark of a bully like that is a deep rooted cowardice and he made sure there was enough in his remarks to allow him to row back and hide behind the vagueness when the heat got too much … that he repeated the comments the following day on TalkSport and expressed no regrets before offering a half-clarification a day or two later tells you everything you need to know.
It is those comments – the ones he made on Sky and then repeated the following day – which the media in England is claiming cost him his job. Sky told him that at the end of this season he’ll no longer be required.
He of course tried to cover up his shame – his disgrace – by playing the old “mutual” card but someone at Sky leaked it because they probably found his attempt at deflection nauseating and they wanted it known that the deed was done on their end and that they think it was a fully justified act. Which it certainly was.
If only his diabolical, partisan attack on the Celtic fans and on our club had been considered unpleasant enough to justify his dismissal.
Maybe the women would never have had to endure his malign presence.
I am glad that they, and the rest of us, will soon no longer need to.