May as well finish off the year pretty much where I started – somewhere not far from the Thickthorn roundabout.
Trouble is Neil Doncaster, erstwhile Chief Executive of Norwich City, is just too easy a target. He can't resist writing articles in the EDP http://new.edp24.co.uk/ and therefore seemingly never tires of making a complete fool of himself.
He's at it again. Somehow he has managed to raise his head above the parapet long enough to realize that not all the NCFC troglodytes are hungrily spooning the drivel he produces down their gullets without puking it straight up.
He decides to tackle some of the problems head on. He seems genuinely shocked that fans are questioning where all the money has gone! (Remember the 25 million for being in the Premiership, Neil?) He plumbs new depths of sickening obsequiousness by explaining that the directors of NCFC are not the money-grubbing misers that some think they are but fantastic football people who regularly buy their own drinks and food on match days. Hurrah!! And, Zippidy-do-dah with bells on it!
He pleads with the fans to applaud the board for not raising ticket prices to exorbitant levels during Norwich's short flirtation with the Premier League – despite the fact that some rise in prices might have produced the kind of team that could have stayed up – and not sunk without a trace! Oh, praise be to the Board for not raising prices!
He shamelessly casts aspersions on those owners who find (without going bankrupt somehow) the means to spend lots of money on good players. He views Chelsea's Abramovich as simply an aberration – and a simpleton. Stupid man! What makes him think he can buy success? Thank the Lord we don't have any such irresponsible spendthrifts at Norwich.
He deplores the other foreign owners who have grabbed a slice of the Premiership action. “What are their motivations? (Snidely!) Only time will tell.” Oh ye of little faith! Is it not written that as ye sow, so shall ye reap. (Yes, Neil, forsooth, it is. What we want to know is when is it our turn to do some reaping – instead of St Delia and her buddies?)
Finally, in a gob-smackingly gormless swipe at the fans he blames them for asking awkward questions and “continually scratching away at the reputation we have built up in Norfolk and beyond for being a unified, family, community club”. Oh praise ye, praise ye, oh saviour of the downtrodden for not mentioning: a successful club; an ambitious club; a well-run club; a club that spends its money building up its assets (no, not hotels and car parks!) but the players!
I really do wish he'd stop writing in the newspaper. It's just embarrassing.