Grant can’t match Mourinho at the microphone

March 12, 2008

Grant at a news conferenceIt’s true I had been up half the night worrying about our half-finished loft conversion during the worst gales of the winter but even so I should not have dropped off to sleep during Chelsea coach Avram Grant’s news conference this week.

Grant is under fire in the Press after Chelsea surrendered both the Cups they held with poor performances against Tottenham Hotspur last month and lower division Barnsley on Saturday.

One might have expected a few fireworks, a bit of tension, emotion — something. My tabloid colleagues tried hard but the Israeli’s expression hardly flickered. It was during another repetition of how disappointed the players were and but how determined nevertheless to win something this season that my elbow slid off the arm-rest and I was jolted awake.

The trouble is Chelsea watchers were spoilt by three seasons of Jose Mourinho. Six months after he and Chelsea parted company we are filled with nostalgia for the apt quote, the off-the-wall metaphor, the acid aside, the humour, the controversy, the fun. There was always a sense of anticipation before the presser and usually a frantic scramble afterwards to try to fit all the good bits into a 500 word story.

No longer. Chelsea are apparently happy that after the Mourinho years the club is, as one insider put it, “under the radar”. I thought, however, that football was an entertainment industry. Whatever he produced on the pitch (winning two championships and three Cups) Mourinho certainly entertained us off it. He must also have done a lot to raise the club’s profile at a time when they were looking for new worldwide markets for the brand. Grant can scarcely be doing that.

Meanwhile Jose, a lot richer after Roman Abramovich’s payoff and well rested after wintering at home in Portugal, is lining up a new job. We can only look enviously to our colleagues in Italy or Spain (assuming the idea of him coming back to Chelsea, raised by Blue Champions, is a non-starter). Wherever he pitches up they will have some good quotes.

PHOTO: Grant is pictured during a news conference in Gelsenkirchen, November 5, 2007. REUTERS/Ina Fassbender


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after the runaround Roberto Mancini has given us Italian hacks in the last 2 days, Id love a bit of peace and quiet with Grant!
I looked like Mour was heading to Inter, but now seemingly not. He should have a Europe wide TV show so we can all enjoy his charm, he doesnt need football.

Posted by Mark Meadows | Report as abusive

You’ve gotta feel for the guy tho’, what wih him coming in to replace someone a million times more charismatic and adding to that he keeps losing the key matches. You know that Grant can’t really handle the big names.

Posted by SB | Report as abusive

Stop giving Avraham Grant such a hard time!
It’s time that Chelsea FC will start appreciate his good work.

Posted by Ron101 | Report as abusive

Jose was the man. you wouldn’t even predict his postmatch interviews,he would come up with something out of nowhere and left the journalists in stitches.The less said about grant the better.

Posted by RENDANI PHARAMELA | Report as abusive