Bullies please apply…

Bully wanted: Preferably a person who has a superior grasp of the basic skills and also the personality to communicate in a way that ensures success. The ability to instil fear of failure, to intimidate, to ridicule poor effort, to generate toughness and to inspire by constantly demanding high standards.

Alex Ferguson, the famous manager of Manchester United, comes to mind. He is one of many such men whose countrymen have honoured for such rare qualities. A brief look at the sideline antics of the current World Cup coaches is a demonstration that the highest positions in the world of football are reserved for bullies.

Judging by the behaviour of these men in the football arena, negativity is a quality that generates success. Observe how they run up and down ranting, showing their disgust at the incompetence of their players, swearing (at the ref as well as the players) and showing approval only once or twice (when a goal is scored) in the whole ninety minutes of the game.

Thus, one is left to infer, The New Zealand Football Association knew exactly what qualities to look for when seeking a coach for New Zealand’s woman’s football team, the Silver Ferns, when they selected Andreas Heraf.

But after the team was beaten by Japan, Mr Heraf had the temerity to suggest that perhaps the standards of Silver Ferns were not good enough. That’s awful, the girls said. The media echoed their distress. So Is it any wonder that Mr Heraf, who was probably taught that girls could do anything boys could do, was left looking baffled?

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Chris Horan

Chris is a former social worker, probation officer and Family Court counsellor, living in Hawea in the South Island.