Following the recent sacking of Nigel Adkins from Southampton this leaves me to ask, where has the loyalty gone in football. This act shows that there is not only a problem with loyalty in players but also chairmen. Adkins managed to gain Southampton two successive promotions in his time at the club getting them from League One to the Premier League. The chairman of Southampton claimed he had ‘the long term future of the club in mind’ and he felt that Adkins was not the man to take to club forward. It is fair to say that Southampton are not in a very comfortable position in the table, however they are a newly promoted club. Adkins also managed to get the Saints out of the relegation zone following a draw against Chelsea. Surely then things were finally looking up for the Saints, so why sack him? This just shows that isn’t as much respect in the game as there used to.
We also know that players do not stay at their club for long periods of time. Long gone are the days where players would stay at a specific club for most of their playing careers. Take Bobby Moore for example he was in the West Ham youth team for two years before having a successful career at West Ham for 16 years, altogether he was at West Ham for 18 years! He probably could have moved on to a bigger team as he was and still is considered one of the games greatest players, but he was West Ham through and through and stayed. Now you don’t see that anymore. Nowadays players move clubs at the first chance if a bigger wage is offered. West Ham have certainly had a few of them in their time!
There is still some loyalty shown in the game. Carlton Cole is one of those players. He apparently took a 50 per cent pay cut when we were relegated to the Championship, although he was offered the chance to play for Stoke. However he felt he should stay at the club, and without him we may not have got promoted after he finished the season as the club’s top goalscorer. His contract is due to run out in the summer and it is still unsure whether this loyalty will be repaid.
So why has the beautiful game lost so much loyalty? Is it because of the Premier League with their big advertising deals? Could even more loyalty be lost with an even bigger advertising deal coming into the Premier League next season?