In recent days I have sat back in disbelief as the SMSM has opened up a campaign to get Walter Smith the Scotland job. Article after article has been published, plaudits on the TV and Radio claiming he is Scotland’s messiah and that he will ride to the rescue of Scotland in its hour of need.
The same Walter Smith who turned his back on his country when David Murray begged him to come back to Ibrox in his hour of need. The same Walter Smith who was a recipient of an EBT and who has been afforded protection from the SMSM in their failure to publicise said tax dodge. The same Walter Smith who breached his contract to quit managing his country and the same Walter Smith who has not managed a club of any sort for the past seven years.
Former players have come out in support of Walter Smith taking the job once more, claiming he is a ‘safe’ pair of hands, this safe pair of hands has a win ratio that is less than the recently departed Gordon Strachan, worse than Alex McLeishs’, worse than Craig Brown’s and only slightly better than Craig Levein’s.
In Smith’s tenure as Scotland manager from 2004 to 2007, he oversaw failure as has every Scotland manager since Craig Brown. His win ratio of 43.75% is only just over 2% better off than Craig Levein’s – which sits at 41.67%. Levein managed Scotland to 24 games winning ten, drawing five and losing nine. Smith on the other hand managed 16 games as Scotland manager winning seven, drawing five and losing four – including a 1-0 defeat to Belarus which ended our hopes of qualification for the 2006 World Cup.
With the departure of Stewart Regan and Scotland failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, the Scottish FA are in a right state and the predictable and boring appointment of Walter Smith would do nothing for the morale of the Tartan Army.
Football has moved on since he last managed in football and has done next to nothing in the way of watching Scottish footballers in action unless it involves a game at Ibrox while he sits in the plush seats of the directors box.
The failure to secure Michael O’Neill as Scotland’s new manager was the killer blow to Regan’s time as chief executive and the potential appointment of Walter Smith as Strachan’s successor could prove to be the final straw for many Tartan Army supporters who are already disillusioned with their national side thanks to the Scottish FA.
Smith’s potential arrival as Scotland manager could also see the return of Ally McCoist as his assistant and in the dugout for the first time since Rangers binned him and his £800,000 a year contract – a laughable amount even now for a rookie manager. No wonder Rangers went tits up.
Scotland doesn’t need an out of touch unemployed EBT’er taking over, what they need are fresh ideas to disregard the current status quo and build for the future. Smith has never been one for building for the future. He didn’t do it in his two stints at Rangers and he didn’t do it in his previous spell as Scotland manager.
So what gives anyone the notion that he can sort out Scotland in time for the European Championship qualifiers?
He is a predictable, unattractive and boring appointment from an organisation that gives Rangers a run for their money in the basket case league.