The Glasgow way: Play hard and work hard

I have family in Glasgow. In the summer, when I was a bairn, we used to go up and stay for what felt like the entire summer, but it was probably just a couple of weeks.

It was always warm and my brother and I used to go to the 'speedy' to play football. The surface was hard, but there were goalposts and always a game, but it was always hard.


Football in Scotland is very serious and hard work. Still fun, but hard work and the do take it very seriously.

It wasn't just the football that was hard. Even at the swimming pool, as soon as the other kids learnt we were English, we were always treated harder. Glaswegians are hard people and unforgiving.

My uncle still scares me. Not these days, I haven't met him in years and he now lives in Ireland, but when I was younger he scared me. He was a big man, worked hard and demanded it back. I think it is the Scottish way of things and maybe more so in Glasgow. It wasn't easy and still isn't.

The Alex McLeish way

I'm mentioning this, because I've just watched the press conference again and I've listened to what he said.

I've also read that he is going to 'lay down the law' when the players get back this week and he's going to tell them the way it is, is very much the way it is from this day on.

He also asked for a chance to prove himself in this video and he is going to get it from me. I don't think he is the right man, but I'm starting to think maybe he isn't the right man with money. Maybe he is with the quality of player we have.

Maybe we do actually need just one or two additions to the starting eleven and maybe if we get them and he does play some of our younger players, he'll get the best out of them.

There has to be a connection as to why Scottish managers do so well and I think it has a lot to do with work ethic. I'm hoping he can bring that to our squad and only strengthen it with players that conform.

The chance is now

So forget about new players. Things are pointing to Randy maybe looking at generating money more than spending it and while that might not be true (we will find out soon enough), we're not going to go out spending lots of money because if we do, we are back in that cycle of not allowing our players the chance.

So, he gets his chance. However, he gets it with our players but he does get to do it his way. We need two, for sure, but they have to be to strengthen the first team that is already in place.

And if he can convince (read force if you want) Downing to stay, maybe when we sign Shay Given this week (or next), we won't actually need anyone.

Either way, his chance should be on our terms because we have the players capable of making the step up - because they are Aston Villa players and they are prepared.

End note

If you watch that video I've linked to above, you'll learn that this manager is fairly up to date with technology. O'Neill would have you believe he never used computers, but this one does, so there is every chance he might be reading this. Be nice.