So a posh, divisive, former public schoolboy has come under recent scrutiny with some claiming he should no longer be in his job. Enough about David Cameron, Radio Berkshire's Tim Dellor has upset those overly sensitive darlings, Reading Football Club fans. And Brian McDermott is cross with him too.
The irony isn't lost on me. Bemoaning what they see as the singling out of one player for grief - I am sure that Mr Dellor would happily point out there have been any number of underachieving, well paid and at times apparently disinterested players to have donned the blue and white hoops over the past three seasons. Some Reading supporters, easily outraged, have been quick to jump on an anti-Dellor bandwagon, as if he is in some way responsible for the dross which has been served up under three successive managers. Actually, scrub that... some are blaming Dellor for that as well. I have read comments on forums and on social media claiming that in criticising players Dellor is somehow undermining the club. Others have said that as a journalist for the licence-fee funded BBC Dellor is harming the club by painting the goings-on at the club in a less than positive light. What utter rot.
With a full scale barney taking place between players during yet another defeat on Tuesday night, it is clear that Reading Football Club isn't a happy place. No one likes losing, least of all the supporters who have become accustomed to sub-standard performances from well-paid individuals. I am afraid that a chief victim of discontent must be the bloke for whom a rumoured and astonishing £2.5 million has been wasted on a one year loan for a return of £833,333 per league goal and a series of glaring misses and penalty spot failures. There is nothing whatsoever to be nicey-nicey about when this kind of moolah has been chucked down the drain. I am afraid that 'he works hard' isn't a good enough defence when serious cash has been spent with precious little return.
Ethically speaking, I cannot see any reason why Tim Dellor shouldn't slate the playing and management staff of RFC if he believes that to do so would be 'fair comment'. He is a journalist. He is paid to give an opinion. He is not a mouthpiece for the club. Goodness knows we have suffered enough positive spin over the years. I can remember the days in the late years of Elm Park where every season seemed even more of a struggle than these last two, yet the local media mouthpiece at the time was Mike Lewis. A former employee of the club, Lewis would ride roughshod over callers who dared criticise the club. Lewis also wrote a regular column in the local rag which made Pravda look like Private Eye. No criticism of the club and its employees ever seemed to be warranted in Lewis' eyes.
Does Dellor go too far the wrong way? Perhaps. Perhaps he is too passionate about the club to do his job properly. But at least he is doing his job honestly and is not in the pocket of the club. In Brian McDermott we have another passionate man who is largely honest, but in the face of criticism and perhaps with the demeanour of a bear with a sore head having seen his side once again lose to an injury time goal it was he and not Dellor who came across badly in Tuesday night's interview. Dellor asked indirectly about the glaring Vydra miss and the contretemps between McShane and Williams. He received short-shrift from McDermott who insisted he wanted to talk "about the game". Sorry Brian, those were the key incidents from the game, the incidents which people are talking about. The incidents which are reflective of misfiring players and a poor team spirit.
Given that Vydra himself almost certainly won't be at the club next season - something I think we will all be pleased about, not least the player himself who cannot have enjoyed this season - McDermott has plenty of questions to answer as to why some younger prospects who will most likely be with us next season are not featuring in these dead-rubber fixtures. The likes of Williams and McShane have questions to answer as to why they cannot be professional enough on the pitch to keep disagreements to the changing room or training ground. The very least of Reading Football Club's worries at this current time lie in what some local hack thinks of all these shenanigans in what has been another turbulent season. But he is entitled to think them and he is paid to give an opinion and to form a narrative.