‘Gordon Taylor is a DINOSAUR – he’s got to go’ – Vinnie Jones joins former players in calling for PFA chief’s resignation

19 Nov

Vinnie Jones has branded Gordon Taylor ‘a DINOSAUR’ and has joined the rabble calling for the 73-year-old to step down as chief executive of the Professional Footballers’ Association.

Around 300 former and current players are campaigning for a change of leadership at the top of the union and are calling for the end of Taylor’s 37-year reign in charge.

Gordon Taylor has been urged to stand down as chief exec of the PFA

A large group of influential players have written an open letter demanding Taylor – who was paid £2.2million last year – stands down from his role as chief executive to ‘allow the PFA to modernise and evolve’.

Current PFA chairman Ben Purkiss, the 34-year-old Walsall full-back, has called for an independent review of the PFA’s leadership structure, with current players questioning whether the organisation does enough to protect members.

MORE: PFA chief Gordon Taylor and Simon Jordan in talkSPORT bust-up over Riyad Mahrez

And former Wimbeldon, Chelsea and Leeds United star Jones has had his say, telling the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast on Monday: “He’s been there far too long.

“He’s on £2million a year and it’s just a joke. I think a younger bloke has to come in now.

Bill Borrows Column: Hypocrites at every turn in football's blame game
Vinnie Jones has joined the host of former and current players calling for Taylor’s exit after 37 years in charge

“This is not before time. He should have gone when that betting scandal came out a few years ago.

“For me it’s like a kangaroo court, he’s been running it through fear over these years and he’s had his little soldiers, but it’s modern times now and he’s got to go.

“He’s a dinosaur – get out!”

Zinedine Zidane to Blackburn, Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Arsenal – The transfers that didn’t happen for strange reasons

7 Sep

Football transfers are arguably one of the most exciting parts of the game but there are some which never quite materialise.

Often it’s because two clubs can’t agree the right fee, or the players can’t agree terms with a club.

However, there are some more bizarre reasons for some transfers not happening.

Below you can see some of the strangest reasons why some moves never went through.

Robbie Savage to Sunderland

Savage moved to Derby and made over 100 appearances for the club after failing to move to Sunderland

Yes, this deal looked very much on the cards when then Sunderland manager Roy Keane obtained permission from former Manchester United team-mate Mark Hughes to take Robbie Savage to Wearside from Blackburn.

However, all that changed after one phone call, or, well a dodgy voicemail message!

Keane recalled in his 2014 autobiography The Second Half how he called Savage’s mobile number and it went straight to voicemail which had Robbie’s voice saying: “Hi, it’s Robbie – whazzup!”

Savage ended up moving to Derby County in January 2008 after Keane concluded that he couldn’t “be f****** signing that.”

Robert Lewandowski to Blackburn

Things could have been so much different for Blackburn if they got their hands on this man

It was mother nature that prevented a youthful Lech Poznan forward Robert Lewandowski from moving to Blackburn in 2010.

He was invited to watch Rovers’ Premier League match at home to Everton in 2010 but his flight was cancelled due to the ash cloud that swept across Europe following the eruption of Icelend’s  Eyjafjallajokull volcano.

Borussia Dortmund nipped in that summer and signed him up.

The Pole has established himself as one of world football’s finest strikers in recent years.

Zinedine Zidane to Blackburn

After winning their first and to date only Premier League title, Blackburn were looking to bolster their side ahead of the 1995/96 season.

Kenny Dalglish, who managed them to the league success put forward the idea to owner Jack Walker about signing a talented Bordeaux midfielder called Zinedine Zidane.

Zidane was a World Cup winner three years later

We’ll never know how true this next part is but multiple accounts have claimed Walker then uttered the words: “Why do you want to sign Zidane when we have Tim Sherwood?”

What a pity…

Andre Villas-Boas to Burnley

This is a deal that doesn’t involve players but how different things could have been if Andre Villas-Boas’ first manager’s job in English football was at Burnley.

The Portuguese applied for the job after Owen Coyle left to join Bolton in January 2010 and according to former Clarets chief executive Paul Fletcher his application was impressive, but maybe a little too impressive.

Burnley fans could have been treated to seeing AVB crouch down on the Turf Moor pitch

Fletcher recalled in his book Magical: A life in Football that AVB’s application was very thorough and detailed and was thus difficult for the Burnley board to understand.

They opted to hire Brian Laws instead but he was unable to prevent them from being relegated to the Championship.

Michael Essien to Burnley

Another regret for Burnley saw them pass up the chance to sign Michael Essien in 1999.

The Ghanaian had an impressive Under-17 World Cup but he did not move to Burnley over the club’s refusal refusing to change their policy of paying more than £60 a week for an apprentice.

Burnley reportedly had first dibs on former Chelsea fan favourite Michael Essien

He then signed for Ligue 1 club Bastia in July 2000 before eventually moving to Chelsea in 2005 where he won nine trophies including two Premier Leagues, four FA Cups and a Champions League.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Arsenal

It’s never a dull moment with Zlatan Ibrahimovic but even he must have surprised himself when he turned down the chance to have a trial with Arsenal in 2000.

Ibrahimovic travelled to north London where he met with Arsene Wenger about the possibility of a move from Malmo.

However, when Wenger suggested the he take part in a trial to prove himself, Ibrahimovic went completely off the idea and replied that he doesn’t do trials.

Ibrahimovic could have worn Arsenal red in his career

The Swede then moved to Ajax and had a glittering career which later saw him join Arsenal’s rivals Manchester United in 2016.

George Boyd to Nottingham Forest

We know about transfers failing to go through because of a failed medical but rarely on the grounds of an “inconclusive eye test”.

But this happened to George Boyd, whose move from Peterborough United to Nottingham Forest in February 2013 fell through for that exact reason.

In reaction to this, Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony was more surprised than anyone, saying: “He’s played 300 games and scored from the halfway line the other month, but Forest say he has an eyesight problem.”

Boyd joined Hull on loan in the same window before making his move permanent

Frank Worthington to Liverpool

Huddersfield’s star striker Frank Worthington was on the verge of completing a big-money move to Liverpool in 1972 but failed a medical after being found to have high blood pressure.

He was told he should take a holiday to Majorca by Liverpool to relax for a week before doing the medical again.

However, things didn’t quite turn out that way as Worthington, known for partying hard whenever he got the chance, came back with even higher blood pressure and a deal never happened.

Worthington’s partying antics saw him miss out on the move of a lifetime

Worthington then went on to move to Leicester later that summer.