'Rectify' means what exactly?

Nigel Worthington won't be sacked unless we get relegated to the Conference. The only way he'll go will be if he decides to walk.Actually, I don't actually believe any of that - but then it wasn't me who said it.

Nigel Worthington won't be sacked unless we get relegated to the Conference. The only way he'll go will be if he decides to walk.

Actually, I don't actually believe any of that - but then it wasn't me who said it.

It was Barry Skipper, one of the directors at Carrow Road, speaking last season.

Now, however, we're supposed to believe that Skipper is fully behind the absurd statement put out this week by Delia and Michael Wynn Jones, effectively giving Worthington two games to save his job.


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Mind you, this is the same Barry Skipper who also said last year, when asked to comment on the Carrow Road protests against the manager: “I'm not sure what that achieves except making it an uncomfortable place for people to come with their families.”

(That was nearly - but not quite - as offensive as Worthington's end-of-season comment that the “true” fans were the few thousand who decided stay around for the so-called lap of honour.)

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So perhaps I should just ignore Skipper.

But I can't ignore the pantomime that has been going on at the club this week.

I'm not particularly fussed about a bust-up on the training ground between Dickson Etuhu and Youssef Safri.

That sort of thing probably happens on a fairly regular basis within the world of football.

And saying that one training-ground falling-up shows that the dressing-room is in chaos is as wide of the mark as saying that one fan chucked out of the ground makes the entire crowd a bunch of hooligans.

No, what has seriously concerned me this week has been the total shambles of a PR move in putting out that statement telling the world that the board is losing confidence in the manager.

I'm certainly not defending Worthington here - I believe we're in a dire situation at the moment and we're miles away from being anything like a promotion-chasing team, and there is an overwhelming feeling among the fans that it's time he went.

But you've got to feel sorry for a guy who has been hung out to dry by his bosses at a time when he needs their support the most.

Back him or sack him were the options, surely. Backing him might not have been popular with a majority of the fans but at least it would have been a show of strength and would have been consistent with the board's previous position.

And sacking him would equally have been a show of strength - and it would have kept most of the supporters happy.

But instead we're stuck in no man's land at the moment.

I have no problem with Delia and Michael Wynn Jones's sentiments - all fans, including them, have their own expectations and their own views about when enough is enough.

But I'd like to know which PR genius came up with the idea of going public in the way that they did, because it has opened a huge can of worms.

Consider these scenarios. We beat Burnley 3-0 and then get a half-decent point at QPR. Does that count as “rectifying” the situation?

Or what about if we play brilliantly in both games but Burnley and QPR each sneak a point?

What if we lose to Burnley and then beat QPR handsomely?

Or what if we unluckily lose both games after vastly improved performances?

And let's say Worthington does enough to keep his job but we then lose the next five games. Will there be another statement giving him another two matches to save his skin?

I was half-expecting a 'clarification' after this week's statement was issued telling us that we'd all misinterpreted what Delia & Co had meant and that it was all the media's fault and that we're all the best fans in the world and so on ad nauseam.

You know, in the same way that every New Labour policy announcement is announced with a fanfare, then the spinning starts, then awkward questions start getting asked, then the public's 'misinterpretation' is blamed on the headline writers, and then the policy is quietly dropped.

But the fact that there haven't been grumblings of discontent from Carrow Road about the media's handling of the story suggests that the club is quite happy with how it's been reported, and Worthington does indeed have two games to save his job.

But why now?

Regardless of the wisdom or otherwise of putting out the statement in the first place, what was it about the Plymouth match that appeared so remarkable to the board?

It's not like away performances such as that one are rare, for goodness' sake.

The Coventry match earlier this month was awful . . . and where shall I start with last season?

There were grim showings at Wolves, Luton, Derby and QPR, among others, and - my personal favourite - the first half against Watford was a particularly shambolic display.

I'm writing this before last night's Colchester v Ipswich Essex derby, but as things stand we could go into tomorrow's Burnley match as the FIFTH-placed team in the region, behind Ipswich, Luton, Colchester and Southend.

The Barnsley and Luton games aside, this season has ranged from ordinary to dreadful.

So what has changed? Or are going to get another rewriting of history and be told that the board have been concerned for some time now, even though they have been denying it publicly?

My fear is that if we win tomorrow (which I expect to happen) and get a point at Loftus Road in a fortnight's time, the board will be powerless to act and Worthington will cling on in his post like a dead man walking.

What a mess.

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