In writing this blog, I’ve tried to stay as neutral as I can in regard to my writing, but this morning I read the illogical ramblings of a madman, and as this is meant to be the man in charge of my football club, I’m compelled to respond.

All I can do is to break down Frank Farina’s bizarre blog post, paragraph by paragraph, below.

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“Towards the end of last year, I read an article that set out 3 reasons to quit social media in 2013. The author said:

  • It’s bad for your self-esteem
  • It can cause high blood pressure
  • Online is no substitute for Offline.

It’s tempting to agree.”

It seems odd to use a blog to point out the follies of social media, particularly when you’re essentially admitting that you read this and didn’t take the advice, but it’s a minor point in a rant that has so much more wrong with it, so I’ll let it go.

I started this blog as a way of expressing my opinion respectfully and openly about the game I love. I also joined Twitter as friends said it’s a good way to stay connected to so many different people. I stayed on it, even when I was appointed as coach of Sydney FC, as I thought it would be good to interact with the club’s fans from time-to-time.

That’s a good reason to start a blog and a terrible reason to be on Twitter. Your job puts you in the public domain and if you aren’t doing it well, then the public is going to tell you. If you aren’t ready and willing to respond to them, then get rid of your account. Your life will be better for it, as you pointed out above, and we’d understand.

“But I have been pretty quiet lately. Partly that’s because I’m one of those ‘all-consuming’ type of people who gets so wound-up in what I’m doing that it’s hard to find the time for the little extras such as writing a blog or replying to people. (For those of you who write via this site, I do read what you send me but I seldom find time to respond – sorry). The other reason I’ve been quiet is thinking about what I call the the “new player in the game”. I’m referring to social media, and especially Twitter.”

Sorry Frank, but you’re not fooling anybody. Sydney FC’s training sessions are open to the public. We know you don’t run them. We also know that you do not attend Youth Team matches. There are rumors of the lack of a video review session for the players, but they are just rumors, so I won’t hold them against you. But the point is, don’t pretend that you’re so consumed in the job of running Sydney FC that you don’t have time for Twitter. You hired Rado to do all of the heavy lifting for you and the rest of your blog post is about what you’ve spent all your time reading on Twitter. I don’t care that you spend more time with your kids, if someone was doing my job for me, I would too.

“As I’ve said many times before, I don’t mind if people have a different opinion or question mine. Many people do.

But I do have a question for the small group of people – who mostly hide behind fake names or no name – who hurl mistruths, abuse and personal insults at me, some of the staff and the players. Are you really real football fans?”

Ok, you’ve got me here Frank. The title of my entire blog gives me away on this one. I’d call it intelligent not to have your real name on the internet. It’s not particularly safe. But if I’d known that writing under a pseudonym meant that a persons opinion was invalid I would never have done it. I’ll be sure to let Ayn Rand, George Orwell, Lewis Carroll and even Dr. Suess know that all of their writings are null and void. I’m happy to give you my name Frank. Just ask.

Additionally, what does are you really real football fans even mean? Are you suggesting that people are insulting you for reasons other than the way your job performance is going? What do you do in your spare time that people would hurl insults at you if they were NOT football fans?

“The campaign for #FarinaOut, the uninformed and inaccurate speculation about injuries, the constant hectoring about drinking – you need to know that they’re water off a duck’s back.”

So much so that you’ve broken a 4 month blog hiatus to write all about it…

I’m curious what is “uninformed and inaccurate” about the extensive list of injuries that is put out each week by your employers, presumably from information that yourself or Anthony Crea have directly given them?*

“A real football fan follows their team through thick and thin.”

Serious question, if the fans that want you out aren’t following the team through this particularly thin period, then why are they bothering with ‘harassing’ you?

“A real football fan, when faced with 1 win & 3 losses for the start of the season, is asking what they can do to help get the team on track.”

No Frank, that’s what a real COACH does. Ask Rado about it.

“A real football fan doesn’t write an expletive laden message about not going to the game on the weekend, but realises this is the time more than ever that they’re needed at home against their biggest traditional rival.”

Actually this is PRECISELY what a real fan does. You see a real fan cares about the club and is passionate. It’s when these emotions run over about a failing club that the above type of things happen. I guarantee that these same fans will still be there on Saturday, just like they were before you joined the Roar and will be long after you’ve given up on football, or it’s given up on you.

“I know this because I’ve done nothing else except work in football since I was 17. I’ve seen and met real football fans in Australia and all over the world.”

Perhaps this is the problem. All you know is being paid to be involved with a club rather than putting up money that you can’t afford to watch a team that you love destroy your entire weekend. I have no doubt that you have met football fans the world over, that doesn’t mean you know what it is to be one. I’ve met strippers from all over the world too, but let’s not go there.

“A real football fan has their team’s back. That’s what makes a great club and, in the Australian context, that’s what will be the next big step in the development of the game in our country.”

These supporters DO have their team’s back. That in no way means that they have your back. The Club is far more important than any player or coach. A real football fan knows this.

“I can promise you that there’s not one player and not one member of the coaching staff who isn’t striving week-in, week-out.”

I should hope so. That’s all of your jobs. This isn’t the bold statement that you seem to think it is.

“Sydney till you die?

Terrific. Prove it.”

We don’t have anything to prove to a person that has been here for less than a season. You’re the one that needs to prove to the supporters that you are up for the job. That you have a plan to get us out of this mess. Prove us wrong, don’t just tell us we are when there’s very little evidence to support it. The burden of proof is on you, not the loyal members of Sydney FC.

“The Big Blue in support of Beyond Blue is on this Saturday at Allianz Stadium against Melbourne Victory. Kick-off is at 7.45pm. See you there – in full sky blue-blooded support to prove that #SydneyIsSkyBlue.

Cheers
Frank”

Cheers. Clink.**

*Also, Crea made his own bed with his tweet about the injuries at Sydney this time last year. If he can’t lay in it, then he shouldn’t have started the mud slinging in the first place.

** That was a cheap shot. I apologise.

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  1. Pingback: A League Picks – Round 5 | Ed Burton is a pseudonym

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