“Hurry up Harry, Come On” – the chorus from a faux-punk anthem from the yob-ish Sham 69 – could be set for a comeback if the Football Association follows the public will and makes Harry Redknapp the new England manager.
The loveable, quotable soccer boss is close to being nailed-on for the job. The only question is when? After emerging freshly-laundered from his trial for allegedly cheating the taxman, the time has never been better for him to lead our nation’s hopes into battle.
At least we would get a bit of straight talking. He challenged the court during his trial as to why, as such a highly paid manager, he would try to fiddle HMRC out of £30,000. A good point.
Apparently the authorities spent £15m chasing Mr Redknapp over a period of five years. Yet it would seem there is much more wrong with the relationship between football and the tax authorities.
Rangers Football Club – the Scottish soccer giant – owes the revenue a reported £50m or more, not least because it has been paying players through some sort of overseas trust which enables them to avoid tax.
The reality is that all most football fans want is for the players to do their best. To sweat a little blood for club and country. To keep running until the final whistle. To care. Oh, and not to treat us like idiots by raking in huge salaries and then doing all they can to avoid paying their fair share in taxes.
But more important issues may well be troubling the Redknapp clan as the patriarch considers the likely offer to lead the nation’s under-achieving footballers to the European Championships in Poland and Ukraine this summer.
Will he rue the day he was tempted away from club football to the rarified atmosphere of the national team? Possibly.
Will his reputation be trashed like so many before him if the under-achieving over-paid stars fail to perform? Probably. Will he be paid a fortune? (Capello was on £6m a year) Almost certainly.
Anyway, here’s hoping Harry accepts the role. In the words of Jimmy Pursey of Sham 69: Hurry up Harry: We’re going down the pub!