I had high hopes for Sean Dyche when he burst into the Premier League.
But the Burnley boss has turned out to be just as bad as the rest of them. Arsene Wenger’s blindness, Joe Mourinho’s arrogance and Steve Bruce’s stupidity have all rubbed off on him.
He wants to hope that he doesn’t catch Manuel Pelligrini’s tactical ineptness disease or he will have problems.
Let’s get one thing straight. The tackle by Burnley’s Ashley Barnes at Chelsea last weekend was a shocker. It was a horrible, brutal, over-the-top assault which could have caused significant damage to Nemanja Matic.
It was one of the more obvious red cards I’ve ever seen. If referee Martin Atkinson really did see the tackle (and we must assume this as there has been no retrospective action by the clowns at the Football Association) he should be stood down for the rest of the season.
Claims that he was tired after a big European appointment earlier in the week are, quite frankly, pathetic.
Any fool and his dog could see what Barnes had done.
Apart from Dyche of course. He defended a challenge he would never have dreamt of defending if it had been made on a Burnley player, even Barnes, a player incidentally who thinks tripping up a referee is part of the game and who has clearly decided robust physicality will compensate for his lack of Premier League ability.
Dyche started talking gibberish about ‘unstoppable pendulum motions’ and the fact that it looked worse in slow motion. Of course it did. Slow motion is a wonderful invention that helps us spot thuggery that would otherwise go unnoticed.
One of the worst consequences of Barnes’ brutality is the opportunity it gave Chelsea and their prima donna manager the chance to play the victim card.
Incredibly a team that has been caught cheating and diving so often and has introduced dirty Diego Costa to the country wants us to believe they are being treated badly by opponents and officials.
But defending your own players is of course natural territory for football managers and fans, and sadly even journalists as more and more football reporters act like supporters rather than impartial observers.
Excuses will always be found for poor behaviour by players in your own team, while the same ill deed committed by an opponent will provoke scorn, derision and accusations of bias.
It’s the same with refereeing decisions. Manchester United could have had all three goals in their recent FA Cup tie at Preston disallowed.
Twitter was awash with Liverpool fans slamming referee Phil Dowd, while United fans (and me) were defending the official.
Such a lack of objectity is a curse of the modern game and sadly it didn’t take Dyche long to become just another one-eyed observer.
Maybe his ‘Ginger Mourinho’ nickname has gone to his head.