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Farewell Sir Bobby

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Robbo Robson | 11:12 UK time, Monday, 3 August 2009

Tell you what. In an age of petty pre-season sniping and angsty footballers slagging off their employers for not loving them enough it's good to be reminded that football is at heart a simple and passionate game. I just wish that Bobby Robson didn't have to pass on for us to get that reminder.

In days of yore the Robsons were a famously violent bunch, carrying out raids across the Scottish border as part of the notorious Border Reivers. Horrible we were. There must've been a happy fork in the family tree though but for us to end up with Sir Bob. (I probably stayed on the dark side).

Statue of Sir Bobby Robson at Portman Road, Ipswich Town

The first time any of us noticed Bobby really was at Ipswich with that blissful team of Beattie, Wark, Muhren, Thijssen and, somehow, the Adlington-nosed Mariner. Them bony Dutchmen looked about as likely to last an English winter as a couple of especially fey daddy-long-legs but Bobby knew how to pick tough lads as well as good ones. The BBC tribute on Saturday night reminded you what a top team that was, and also what a desperate time it was for hair. Bobby consoling supersub Clive Woods was touching, but judging by the lad's barnet Clive could've done without climbing up them electricity pylons for a hobby.

Of course Sir Bobby's compassion and enthusiasm was no match for the tabloid tigers. It's hard to believe the kind of bile poured out at Robson during his time as England manager. I think part of the problem for any manager post-Ramsey was that he wasn't Cloughie. Mind you, Ron Greenwood was a lovely fella too and he never got the same flak. When it was announced by another follically-challenged character, the damp-voiced Graham Kelly, that Robson was off to PSV after 1990, the accusations of traitor were just ridiculous. I remember some plank repeating it down the Blue Bell after reading some bog-roll of a newspaper and the whole pub turned on him. Bobby may have been doing a crap job, but he was a good man through and through.

Turned out that Robson was doing a fine job, as it happened. When you look at it, Robson's teams were a handball and a penalty-kick away from a semi and a final in two successive World Cups. All right, the 1988 Euros weren't great, but van Basten's torturing of Tony Adams will live longer in the memory than any managerial failings.

Some say he got lucky but his career post-1990 suggests he was Dame Fortune's chosen son. Loads of gongs in Holland, Portugal and at Barca.
The reason the tears flowed so copiously in the Blue Bell (so that the whole place looked like an Edgbaston outfield) had less to do with the man's achievements and more to do with who the bloke was.

I can't think of a current manager who is so highly regarded as a human being. We can admire Fergie for his undoubted brilliance, but his attitude leaves a bit to be desired. He's not the most generous of blokes. Wenger's dedication to his principles, and the brightness of his young teams, is sometimes offset by the total eclipses that cross his eyes but no one else's, and the odd tantrum about the nasty Bolton bully-boys. Most of us like old 'Arry, but it's similar to the affection that we have for Arfur Daley, I reckon. Moyes and O'Neill may mellow in their later years, but I don't reckon on them ever being quite so treasured as Sir Bob.

Sir Bobby Robson celebrates winning the European Cup Winners' Cup with Barcelona

And that was what was striking about the tribute programme. Everywhere he went, whoever you spoke to, everyone smiled when he spoke to or about the bloke. I mean stuff the trophy cabinets with as much shiny metal as you like, earn more money than Midas could imagine, drive more fancy cars than the parking attendant at that a seven-star Dubai hotel, but if you come up in conversation and everyone says 'great career, bit of a pratt, though' then I'd be wanting to hand a lot of them back.

Bobby got both: fondness and rewards.

I've yet to meet a Toon Army regular who can understand why Bobby was sacked. At the time the impatient wing on the Gallowgate were chuntering stupidly but by and large everyone understood it to be a blip. Just finished 4th, then 3rd, in the Prem, your manager's got an outstanding track record but we'll sack him anyway and bring in... Graeme Souness. Like replacing a tube of strong adhesive with a bag of rusty nails. If a single decision in NUFC's recent history justifies their current position it's that one. The shrine at St. James's just re-emphasises it.

But the Blue Bell's abiding memory of him is on that balcony, pasty English beer belly on full display with his face squeezed so tightly between his palms that he looked like he'd got stuck in the lift doors. He looked more down than a bloodhound with a cold in the nose but it turns out the man was listening to Frank Sinatra on his headphones at the time (and probably pressing down as hard as he could on the earpieces to block out the sound of Gazza desperately trying to cheer his boss up with a quirky tune and some joke-shop boobs.)

They say behind every great man, there's a great woman (which means, according to me Blue Bell pals, that my missus must be downright mediocre) and clearly a man like Bobby needs a patient and very supportive wife to put up with his utter dedication to the game he loved, and to help him through the battles with illness too. I'm sure she's comforted by all the lovely tributes.

I think there's an unspoken feeling in them tributes that we won't see his like again in footy. He was a fine, fine man and, importantly in today's climate, he knew the value of fellowship - and of a quid. Farewell Sir Bobby. Top man.

Comments

  • 1. At 12:54pm on 03 Aug 2009, GretnaPat wrote:

    A great tribute to a great man.

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  • 2. At 1:03pm on 03 Aug 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    Never thought I'd revert to cliche - but great blog, Robbo.

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  • 3. At 1:07pm on 03 Aug 2009, walrus wrote:

    Nice blog, Robbo - balance of humour and respect.

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  • 4. At 1:25pm on 03 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Well said Sir.

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  • 5. At 1:45pm on 03 Aug 2009, Woody wrote:

    It says a lot about the man that a decent and genuine chant of "One Bobby Robson..." went round the Sunderland end at the Celtic game on Saturday.

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  • 6. At 1:47pm on 03 Aug 2009, andrewtheboom wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 7. At 1:55pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    I always think that posthumous tributes tend to glorify their subject and they're basically sycophantic exaggerations. Given the widespread glowing praise of Sir Bobby Robson, you'd think this was exactly the typical scenario. Yet it's not - in fact so many people, not just one or two, say fantastic things about him and then say they cannot actually explain what a wonderful man he was. I never met him or supported a team he managed (except England, but he left when I was 6 or 7) but you can't help but always thought he was magnetic - you couldn't help but love him a bit. When he got the award in 2007, it really was a genuinely touching moment and I really hope he knew just 1% of the affection that this entire nation seems to feel for him. Farewell Bobby, a unique man who can never be replaced.

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  • 8. At 2:00pm on 03 Aug 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    The tributes to Robson are a list of what the game no longer is.

    Could do with a few more like him rather than much of the petty stuff that seems to comprise a post match interview nowadays.

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  • 9. At 2:10pm on 03 Aug 2009, boomshakalak wrote:

    when i heard the news that Sir Bobby Robson had died i felt genuinely upset. He is one of the few people in the world that I wish i could have met - as he seems to have left a positive impression on everyone who was lucky enough to have spent time with him.

    I will always remember the 2 trips i have taken to Lisbon - every time a taxi driver spotted that i was english the first thing they would say was "England - Bobby Robson".. followed by something along the lines of "great, wonderful, fantastic"... and then always "gentleman".

    Thanks for all the good times Sir Bobby

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  • 10. At 2:15pm on 03 Aug 2009, divealdo wrote:

    One of my old dad's proudest boasts was that he played against Sir Bobby as a lad in the same local league but that while Sir Bobby went on to make it his profession, my grandparents decided that football was no real job for a man so Dad missed out.

    Great tribute Robbo. Another great man gone but never forgotten in this household.

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  • 11. At 2:24pm on 03 Aug 2009, myfreedomforever wrote:

    Daring; gracious; honorable; caring; successful; a great leader and mentor, husband and father ... There aren't many more accolades one would want in a lifetime. Those of us of a godly persuasion go about our daily tasks loving the lord our God with all our heart, mind, soul and spirit; and our neighbors as ourselves. Sir Bobby epitomized what it takes to attain perfection both here on earth and in our heavenly abode and my prayers go out to Lady Elsie and the entire family as we celebrate a life well-lived ... "Somewhere beyond the shadows, he heard a beckoning call, and taking the hand that was offered, he quietly left us all ..." You will always be remembered Sir Bobby ...

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  • 12. At 2:32pm on 03 Aug 2009, wedontknowfootball wrote:

    a great testimonial for a great man.

    http://wedontknowfootball.com/

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  • 13. At 2:34pm on 03 Aug 2009, enjpmm wrote:

    "...Adlington-nosed Mariner."

    I simply can't believe I just read that. All the well-documented hard work she put in to become a double olympic champion and you - who purports to be a sports journalist, who is meant to be enlightening us members of Joe Public with your superior knowledge and nuance - see fit to say something like this. Running down the looks of a young girl in such a gratuitous and off-hand manner.....

    I intend to make a complaint to the bbc about this.

    PS. anyone accusing me of a sense of humour failure must first point out what exactly it is that is humorous about that statement.

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  • 14. At 2:34pm on 03 Aug 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    A great blog about a great man who'll be greatly missed...

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  • 15. At 2:36pm on 03 Aug 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    13... not today son, let it go.

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  • 16. At 2:39pm on 03 Aug 2009, pidgeGULL wrote:

    Well done for managing to eulogise the man without resorting to the word 'Legend'

    It may or may not be true, but it's a dull over-used cliche, especially when applied to a man such as Bobby who easily transcends such a lazy term.

    RIP

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  • 17. At 2:41pm on 03 Aug 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 18. At 2:44pm on 03 Aug 2009, harrischopper wrote:

    >>> 13. At 2:34pm on 03 Aug 2009, enjpmm wrote:
    "...Adlington-nosed Mariner."

    I simply can't believe I just read that. All the well-documented hard work she put in to become a double olympic champion and you - who purports to be a sports journalist, who is meant to be enlightening us members of Joe Public with your superior knowledge and nuance - see fit to say something like this. Running down the looks of a young girl in such a gratuitous and off-hand manner.....

    I intend to make a complaint to the bbc about this.

    PS. anyone accusing me of a sense of humour failure must first point out what exactly it is that is humorous about that statement................



    Am I missing something here or is your humour so dry you've even left me gobsmacked...... just in case, Robbo was writing about Paul Mariner, who bobby Robson signed from plymouth and turned into an england player... but he DID have a pretty spectacular conk!

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  • 19. At 2:48pm on 03 Aug 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    I don't think that Addlington actually invented that nose. I know I've seen it somewhere before...
    http://www.premiere.com/var/ezflow_site/storage/images/list/the-best-and-worst-batman-villains/the-best-bat-villains-the-penguin/44248-1-eng-US/The-Best-Bat-Villains-The-Penguin_imagelarge.jpg

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  • 20. At 2:50pm on 03 Aug 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    She's "old gregg"

    http://api.ning.com/files/IjBsBhchiAWZKP4e-l5Z3kOlFSssqVR9wmtE5JWvgCxZnKscivnYFQn5kBruO-kJZJfqnlP0lOUz-WckfGjMPamoDsz3WNDv/Old_Gregg.jpg

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  • 21. At 2:52pm on 03 Aug 2009, enjpmm wrote:

    @15

    RedBlueArmy92 - ah yes, my apologies, today is Monday! It's the other days on which I turn a blind eye to "Robbo" making snide comments about the looks of young girls in print ** - girls who have somewhat more talent and achievements to their name.... Thanks for setting me straight with your obviously well-honed moral compass.

    ** and in an article which started with him laughing at " angsty footballers slagging off their employers for not loving them enough". How does this compare with angsty sports columnists slagging off sportsman for...erm...no reason at all as far as I can see?

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  • 22. At 2:58pm on 03 Aug 2009, SaintOne wrote:

    @ 21

    Why do you assume he was comparing Mariner to R. Addlington? Perhaps he speaks of another? You concluded he was referring to the Gold medal winning Addlington, but why? The fact he mentioned Addlington-nose and you assume it is a) an insult and b) about the swimmer shows you have some form of prejudice yourself!

    Chill out, you wouldn't be complaining if he was talking about Gary Lineker's ears would you?

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  • 23. At 3:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, mrmichaelh wrote:

    A very nice piece about a very special man. I did before I clicked on the article expect to see a dig at Ferguson and, sadly, I wasn't disappointed. It wasn't necessary and it's something that Robson would have turned his nose up at given the fact the two of them were such good friends.

    "He's not the most generous of blokes." That statement is just so off the mark as I'm sure managers throughout the leagues (Glenn Roeder being a very good example) and countless charity organisations would agree.

    Just because he and other managers since the dawn of time INCLUDING the great Sir Bobby may, now and again, genuinely feel that their team were hard done by or didn't deserve to lose in a post match interview, you shouldn't confuse that with a poor attitude or not being generous.

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  • 24. At 3:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, lesjar wrote:

    Bobby Robson - a gentlemans gentleman
    Our prayers are with his family.

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  • 25. At 3:08pm on 03 Aug 2009, Boshorange wrote:

    Probably the best blog you've ever done. A shame it has to be about something so sad. The best ambassador to football England has ever had. I think it takes someone special to make so many clubs accross Europe pull together, forget rivalries and national borders and say that they are all mourning the loss of a great man who affected all of them, and will be a part of their history forever. Who really cares who signs for who, or how big Ronaldo's new mansion right now?

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  • 26. At 3:09pm on 03 Aug 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    21; ** and in an article which started with him laughing at " angsty footballers slagging off their employers for not loving them enough". How does this compare with angsty sports columnists slagging off sportsman for...erm...no reason at all as far as I can see?

    About the same as an angsty poster on a blog which is written in memory of a great figure in british sporting history picking up on a joke about a girls nose and deciding it was their job to point out that this was harsh and uncalled for. Even though in reallity she does have a right old beak on her and there are far bigger things to worry about...

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  • 27. At 3:10pm on 03 Aug 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #23 mrmichaelh

    I think the comparison made was that Robson always seemed to conduct himself with something of a magnanimous air whereas Ferguson, in the opinion of many, does not. The point being that Robson's approach puts him on a highly level than Ferguson, regardless of the trophies that Ferguson has won.

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  • 28. At 3:11pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    How pathetic that you people can't stop bickering (as happens on every blog, every week), when you should be paying respects to Sir Bobby. I respect the offence taken to insulting comments towards somebody's looks, however if you're going to take offence to people doing that then I suggest you buy several keyboards because you have many, many letters to write. I bet you don't stick up for Anne Widdecombe in the same way? In this instance, it was meant as a light-hearted comment, so you should direct your attention to the more cynical areas of the media that actually do harm with their obsessive and unrealistic critique of the human body.

    Now, back to Sir Bobby perhaps? Can you imagine people of his generation acting like this? It just goes to prove a point that several people have made.

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  • 29. At 3:13pm on 03 Aug 2009, lanzageordie wrote:

    post 21
    Get a life mate, i was enjoying reading all the comments on Sir Bobby until you and your high horse arrived.
    There's a handful of you who read Robbo's blogs just to pull him up! Get real, if it bothers you that much don't click on it. As a lifelong barcode supporter he rips me and my like to sheds whenever possible, and i love it for what it is....FUN!!
    Great tribute Robbo, keep it up son.
    RIP Sir Bobby, sadly missed by all.

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  • 30. At 3:13pm on 03 Aug 2009, peter robinson wrote:

    15....spot on ( tho' our scibe was rather rude using our Beckies schnozzle as a benchmark....tho similar one looks OK on streisand!)
    17....lord preserve us from superior beings: if you do not like it, do not read it and upset yerself so. Go and read a book.

    Interesting that Charlton is also a Reiver family

    PS I'm 50% Musgrave...yet another Reiver familly but far fewer in the phonebook! Guess we were crap and had a higher death rate

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  • 31. At 3:16pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    29 - here here mate, absolutely spot on.

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  • 32. At 3:17pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    26 - to be fair, not many!

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  • 33. At 3:20pm on 03 Aug 2009, StretfordFaithful wrote:

    For all the idiots out there argueing over adligtons nose get a grip of yourselves. or open up a 606 debate and talk about it elsewhere.

    Let everyone else leave a comment about a great manager Bobby Robson was!

    RIP Sir Bobby Robson!

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  • 34. At 3:23pm on 03 Aug 2009, kashifsakhan wrote:

    I was lucky enough to meet Sir Bobby in Dubai while i was working for a Football show. Even though i only got to meet and talk to him for a few minutes, i could tell he was a top bloke..
    RIP Sir Bobby..

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  • 35. At 3:28pm on 03 Aug 2009, mrmichaelh wrote:

    27,

    People will agree and disagree with your comments. My problem are the usual, unsubstantiated sweeping statement about Ferguson the 'Man' from fans and some journalists who don't have a clue when evidence from his peers..and forgive me if I hold their word in higher regard..would suggest that it's not just his brilliance as a manager which leads him to being held in the highest esteem.

    Robson thought Ferguson was a great man..you saw his reaction at the BBC awards when he heard Ferguson was presenting him with it..they were great friends. Robson would disagree with the comment that Ferguson is not generous and would never wish to be placed above or below anyone..that say everything about the man and that's the way it should be

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  • 36. At 3:35pm on 03 Aug 2009, dodiesmith wrote:

    Lovely warm tribute, Robbo --

    You honour the man AND the sport he loved.

    Thank you.

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  • 37. At 3:38pm on 03 Aug 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #35 mrmichaelh

    I was mightily impressed with Ferguson at the BBC awards.

    However, I stand by what I said about Ferguson. People's opinion of Robson has not just been formed in the last few days since his sad departure. In life, Robson's character was held in higher regard than Ferguson's so it's not just his passing that has brought on some sort of sentimental blindness.

    Individual's each have their own opinion of Ferguson, (and I'll bet he's never helped a competitor by the way, despite all the lauding) but in a straight comparison his seemingly cantankerous and obstinate approach gives rise to his comparative lack of popularity to that of Robson.

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  • 38. At 3:43pm on 03 Aug 2009, pidgeGULL wrote:

    35. I didn't see it as an insult to Ferguson just a reference to SAF's tendency to indulge in 'mind-games' where Robson would be more likely to focus purely on what happens on the pitch. It's not just Fergie, Rafa, Wenger and Robson's one-time protege Mourinho all do it. Its just testament to Robson that he didn't, more of a sign of changing times and attitudes than an insult to SAF.

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  • 39. At 3:44pm on 03 Aug 2009, MouthoftheTyne wrote:

    I was on holiday when he died and was amazed at the reaction of all the locals in Cyprus - they were as shocked and saddened as I was. THAT is the sign of a great man - the faxct he was a football manager is coincidental! I'll bet he could look himself in the face when he shaved on a morning - I wonder how many others in the game (or many other walks of life) can say the same. More to the point - we've lost another good manager candidate so we don't have many left!

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  • 40. At 3:47pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    MrBlueBurns - I think there's few people who compare favourably to Robson in terms of popularity. And you are absolutely right that opinions of Robson have not been formed in the last few days, he has always been spoken very highly of. However, Ferguson is well known to give advice to young managers, including those in the same division as him. Let's make a distinction here - in normal circumstances, evidence would suggest that Sir Alex is a warm and generous person. However, in the face of his direct rivals, such as Wenger, Keegan, Dalglish, Benitez etc etc, he isn't scared to whip them up into a frenzy so that he has the psychological advantage. To me, it's a bit like a fast player skinning a slow one. It might not seem fair, but frankly it is.

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  • 41. At 3:52pm on 03 Aug 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #40 maradoi84

    A fair comment, but let me just clarify what I mean.

    I find Ferguson a bloody minded, quite objectionable individual, and comments from his friends do not change that. I do not know him, they do, I accept that. However, we are all entitled to opinions and day after day, posters on here comment on people they do not know and that seems to be fine. The constant negative coverage of someone like Ashley Cole is a prime example of this.

    (As a side matter, I could mention, again, the way that many media types seem to cosy up to him for fear of being blacklisted I suspect and give credit to his 'mind games'.)

    None of this can be levelled at Robson which is why he is cast in a positive light and Ferguson is used negatively by comparison. The point being, as mentioned above, trophies you earn are one thing, respect you earn is quite another.

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  • 42. At 3:59pm on 03 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    #38
    Completely agree with that.

    Having pondered this for a while, I'd put Matt Busby and Bob Paisley on the list of top class Gentlemen managers. As much to do with their humility as their success. I'm sure there are others but they're just not coming to mind right now.

    Anyway, as always, somebody's nose gets put out of joint!

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  • 43. At 4:02pm on 03 Aug 2009, Sweet_Silver_Song wrote:

    I agree, 41. Robson wouldn't blacklist journalists. He never called local rivals "small clubs". To my knowledge, he didn't complain about referees or scheduling. He just got on with it and kept his counsel to himself. To me, that is the difference (in class).

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  • 44. At 4:05pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    MrBlueBurns - to be fair, I won't criticise your opinion of Sir Alex because it's actually quite understandable. He's the type of guy that doesn't care who he winds up, whereas Sir Bobby Robson rarely wound anyone up - that was just the kind of man he was, and the reason we all think so highly of him is just because there are so very few gents like him around. And that's in any walk of life, not just football.

    I get what you're saying regarding Sir Alex - however, I do believe that the media cosying up to him is not a criticism of Sir Alex testament to the phenominal ability of the man (in fact, Sir Bobby would have loved that ability I'm sure) - it seems SAF gets the best, by which I mean in his eyes, out of everyone he deals with. "The best" in this case is a fear of criticising him - and that's why I'd thank God he's a football manager, because he'd be a dangerous politician!

    There's also the case that Britain loves a glorious loser, and loves to hate the habitual winner - I STRESS I'M NOT CALLING SIR BOBBY A LOSER - however Sir Alex is a winner, the likes of which we've not seen in British football before. Therefore he's set up for criticism, people will say he's not fair etc etc. But make no mistake, you hate him now but once he's gone you'll realise he was never such a bad guy - just irritatingly successfull. It's the Phil Browns of this world that I dislike more...arrogant, yet not deserving of it.

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  • 45. At 4:15pm on 03 Aug 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #44 markadoi84

    My opinion of Robson has not changed from last Monday to this Monday.

    My opinion of Ferguson will not change on his demise. I recognise his achievements now and I will then. 'Then' though, I will still think what I think of him now personally.

    I don't do or overdo sentimentality.

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  • 46. At 4:20pm on 03 Aug 2009, Demoremda_AJAX wrote:

    most of all i remember bobby robson as a nice person and a good coach, some managers could use some of his temperament, if van gaal had taken all the flak bobby got in his time with the england team he probably would have exploded:)
    im an atheist, but its a nice thought thinking bobby is able to watch all the matches now from heaven

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  • 47. At 4:25pm on 03 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    Now then about Fergie. Don't really know what he's like in private over a bottle of 100 quid merlot but he's not 'generous' in defeat, that's for sure. In fact he's very begrudging of other teams' successes as far as I can tell.
    Now some of you slag me off on these pages but you don't know me either. In private, I am eloquent, a gifted songster and an absolute dream of a creative midfielder.

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  • 48. At 4:27pm on 03 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    Re Becky's nose... it is large. I rather admire its largeness - rather that than one of these lasses with a 2000 quid schnozz from the local surgeon that looks like it's been nicked off an undeserving piglet.

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  • 49. At 4:27pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    45 MrBlueBurns,

    Fair enough mate, it's just that I happen to believe that people overdo their negative sentiments to Sir Alex because he's still around, winning things, and getting up people's noses. It's when he's gone that I expect judgement of him on a personal level to become more balanced and fair, not the other way round. Not trying to change your mind by the way, people will always dislike people like Sir Alex.

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  • 50. At 4:32pm on 03 Aug 2009, mrmichaelh wrote:

    "There's also the case that Britain loves a glorious loser, and loves to hate the habitual winner - I STRESS I'M NOT CALLING SIR BOBBY A LOSER - however Sir Alex is a winner, the likes of which we've not seen in British football before. Therefore he's set up for criticism, people will say he's not fair etc etc. But make no mistake, you hate him now but once he's gone you'll realise he was never such a bad guy - just irritatingly successful."

    Too true. As fas as I remember, Robson was never manager of the most hated club in England for over 20 years. Robson moaned about refs etc when he was at Newcastle..I'd have been perturbed if he hadn't have done..all managers do it but when you're boss of one of the biggest clubs in the world, every single thing you do or say will be highlighted. Robson and Ferguson were great friends and it's a hell of compliment when Ferguson says he wouldn't put anyone an inch above Robson. Everone is entitled to an opinion but I prefer to listen to the likes of Robson and peers rather than fans who have never met the bloke and have elements of ABU within them.

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  • 51. At 4:32pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    Robbo - I can only assume that you just remember the times when Fergie's appeared not to give credit to others, such as when he said United were the best team despite the fact they got trounced 4-1 by Liverpool at OT. The fact is, he knew that was rubbish as much as anybody else, but that was for the benefit of his humiliated players. As for being gracious in defeat, he ALWAYS congratulates the managers and teams of those who defeat him. There's a few managers I can think of who don't, but because frankly they're not as good, they don't get the criticism. Anyways, I think I'll let Fergie defend himself - but being the lovely bloke he is, he'll probably shy away from such confrontation!

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  • 52. At 4:33pm on 03 Aug 2009, U11947716 wrote:

    Robbo - why keep the eloquence so hidden then? To be fair you let some of it show in this article. What sort of songs are you writing?

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  • 53. At 4:35pm on 03 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    HeavensChimney - since May, I imagine Robbo's become something of a Boro version of Johnny Cash. A miserable version, mind.

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  • 54. At 4:58pm on 03 Aug 2009, dandolinho wrote:

    "However, Ferguson is well known to give advice to young managers, including those in the same division as him. Let's make a distinction here - in normal circumstances, evidence would suggest that Sir Alex is a warm and generous person".

    the same fergie who came out all 'beyond the pale' about somethng that didnt concern him (which incidently lacks respect) and the same man, who for all the 'advice' he likes to give, managed to send a letter to a man who had just wont the champions league telling him how he SHOULD have done it!! again, that wasnt a nice thing, it was an underhand comment/letter, for which he had no need to send other than to be sly.

    on bobby.. never net the man but followed enough of him at all his clubs to know the man was a gifted manager... and agree whole heartedly that newcastles current plight owes more to his dissmissal than to ashleys takeover.

    would love to have spent a night talking football with him, u could just tell that you would learn more in a night from him than most men on the planet (about football mainly, but i got the sense he had more wisdom on everything else)

    he never managed any team i support, and i dont care about england, but i truly hurt at the news of his passing. long live his memory.. damn he deserves it1

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  • 55. At 5:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, yourhavingmeon wrote:

    I met Sir Bobby once and can vouch that the man you saw on the tv screen was the man in real life. A true gentleman.

    By the way Robbo, I was in Middlebrough a fortnight ago and specifically went for a drink in the Blue Bell at Acklam on the Friday night. Where were you?

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  • 56. At 5:10pm on 03 Aug 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    Ref 55 yourhavingmeon

    Unlike your experience with Bobby, none of us have ever met Robbo in real life.

    He was probably the barmaid.

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  • 57. At 5:14pm on 03 Aug 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    That should have read "none of us has..." Just in case that Becky nose man is in the mood for more nit-picking.

    Anyway, there's nothing wrong with Becky's film star looks. She was great doing the backstroke in "Jaws".

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  • 58. At 5:46pm on 03 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    55. At 5:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, yourhavingmeon wrote:
    I met Sir Bobby once and can vouch that the man you saw on the tv screen was the man in real life. A true gentleman.

    By the way Robbo, I was in Middlebrough a fortnight ago and specifically went for a drink in the Blue Bell at Acklam on the Friday night. Where were you?

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Who said it was the one in Acklam?
    Any road I was on a little holiday... not telling you where or you'll be seeking out the caravan park when I'm trying to relax.

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  • 59. At 5:48pm on 03 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    markadoi is spot on with the description of the songs... a particularly bluesy feel since May.

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  • 60. At 5:49pm on 03 Aug 2009, prettyipswichtiger wrote:

    A great Blog about a far greater man!! As an Ipswich fan I am very upset that I am unable to attend the Ipswich Newcastle game as I am sure it will be one massive tribute to Sir Bobby with a brilliant atmosphere that I am sure Bobby would have loved!

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  • 61. At 5:51pm on 03 Aug 2009, shrimpkebab wrote:

    The 1990 World Cup was the first one I really remember - I was 12 and that summer was really the time I fell in love with football. I thought Bobby Robson was a great manager and even then, you could tell he was a man of principles.

    Its a shame that he was treated shabbily by Newcastle in his final role....

    I think its fair to say that there will never be another man quite like him - great coach, great man manager, great person and a great memory of player names!

    RIP Sir Bobby

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  • 62. At 5:53pm on 03 Aug 2009, Bellypork wrote:

    Superb stuff Robbo.....rusty nails indeed! :o)

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  • 63. At 5:54pm on 03 Aug 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    58. At 5:46pm on 03 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:
    55. At 5:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, yourhavingmeon wrote:
    I met Sir Bobby once and can vouch that the man you saw on the tv screen was the man in real life. A true gentleman.

    By the way Robbo, I was in Middlebrough a fortnight ago and specifically went for a drink in the Blue Bell at Acklam on the Friday night. Where were you?

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Who said it was the one in Acklam?
    Any road I was on a little holiday... not telling you where or you'll be seeking out the caravan park when I'm trying to relax.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    My guess is that you didnt see "Robbo" because he is not, in fact, real. He is an annoying little character invented by some talentless journalist in the bbc who was a failed comedian.

    Any road......

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  • 64. At 5:57pm on 03 Aug 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

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  • 65. At 6:01pm on 03 Aug 2009, Riggadon wrote:

    Is Robbo real?

    God nose.

    On a lighter note, Addlington and Carl Froch should get it on.....my lord, the children that those two could produce!!!!!!!

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  • 66. At 6:08pm on 03 Aug 2009, U14029869 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 67. At 6:08pm on 03 Aug 2009, Friendlycard wrote:

    Robbo, I usually like your articles, but this is one of your very best - a great tribute to a fine man, and with humour very nicely and gently judged.

    Sir Bobby was that rare combination, a genius and a gentleman - his generosity and kindness put a lot of so-called 'successful' managers to shame.

    I also happen to think he was England's best manager - as you rightly say, just a handball and a penalty away from World Cup success.

    Why Newcastle sacked him - when he'd taken them from the relegation zone to 3rd in the league - baffles me to this day.

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  • 68. At 6:39pm on 03 Aug 2009, Virtuet wrote:

    Robson thought Ferguson was a great man.

    Well that undone all the nice things people have been saying about him. I cannot think of a worse thing to say about a man whom unlike Fegie never intimidated referees or slagged other teams and their managers.

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  • 69. At 6:49pm on 03 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 70. At 6:52pm on 03 Aug 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 71. At 6:55pm on 03 Aug 2009, OLDGOLD58 wrote:

    Sir Bobby Robson was one of the true gentlemen of English football. He was deserving of his knighthood and conducted himself correctly at all times. Not for him the bickering and mud slinging so prevalent among some managers in the premier league. He was above all that. Should anybody need a role model look no further than Bobby Robson. He was all that is good about English football.
    Sir Bobby your charm and pleasant manner will be sadly missed for I fear you are the last of that ilk. The world of football is worse off for your departure. Thank you for all the good memories.

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  • 72. At 6:55pm on 03 Aug 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    Ref 63

    Say it ain't so, Joe

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  • 73. At 7:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, Robokopthe3rd wrote:

    Sir Bobby Robson was a top bloke who was a good man, yet at the same time a very influential coach. Sir Alex received his advice gladly, Sven Goran Erikkson paid Robson a visit at Ipswich when he was unknown outside Sweden to learn from the great man. And there are many coaches and managers who played under Sir Bobby who he inspired. Jose Mourinho was his translator and no. 2 at Barca. I also believe that he was probably Englands best manager. No disrespect in anyway to Sir Alf Ramsey (another ex-Ipswich manager), but in 66 it was at home. Yes, in 70 in Mexico England also did well, but to take a vastly underacheiving team in 88 to within a whisker of the final in 90 requires good coaching. Certainly Enlgand have never been closer since Robsons days. Euro 96 doesnt count as England should have gone out to Spain in the qf as they wrongfully had a goal dissallowed. And Venables is not in the same bracket as Robson. I ran the Great North Run in 99, when Peter Reid (Sunderland manager at the time), and Sir Bobby were the official race starters. At the end, just after I crossed the line Sir Bobby was talking with someone one metre away from me! So I feel I kind of half knew him :)
    Sir Bobby Robson YNWA

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  • 74. At 7:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, captainmatt_williams wrote:

    an outstanding british manager that unlike his contemporaries achieved success at the highest-level abroad.

    rest-in-peace Sir Bob.

    http://jumpersforgoalposts1212.wordpress.com/2009/08/03/premierleague-09-10-top-scorers/

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  • 75. At 7:10pm on 03 Aug 2009, cbpp300 wrote:

    great article as usual about a great man.
    on the issue of noses, i was watching an old episode of FRIENDS, Ross looks at the Janice's baby and says "did you see that baby behind the nose", think it would be a fair comment to pass on the addlington.

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  • 76. At 7:19pm on 03 Aug 2009, Red Nosed Burglar wrote:

    Great article dedicated to a true LEGEND.

    #66 If you are so against Robbo, why do you even read this article, let alone any of his? At times Robbo can be like fingernails scratching a blackboard, but at other times, like today, he can smack on. A wonderful tribute.

    This is not a time for criticism; it is a time for reflection and thanksgiving.

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  • 77. At 8:01pm on 03 Aug 2009, Spitfire wrote:

    Where would we find a man so well respected by all?

    R.I.P. Sir Bobby.

    There will always be some dim wits who have no decency.

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  • 78. At 8:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, enjpmm wrote:

    @28 markadoi84

    I'll direct my endeavours wherever i like thank you. No, I wouldn't stick up for Anne Widdecombe in the same way - I think people should be treated according to how they behave. I've seen Anne W talk some self-serving nonsense in her time. Rebecca A has always conducted herself well and so deserves some respect.

    You (and all the others who made the same point) are totally contradicting yourself by ending saying "can you imagine people of his generation acting like this" - this is precisely my point, can you imagine a truly great man such as Sir Bobby ever saying such a thing, completely out of the blue and for no reason, about a 20 year old girl?

    @29. lanzageordie

    I'll comment whenever and wherever I feel people are acting like idiots. You, and all the rest who just think I'm an idiot and actually bother to post to tell me so - and so also pollute the comments (the very charge against me) in order to defend what was clearly an unfunny, cheap shot - are quite obviously just not considerate people, so there's no point in discussion, we'll have to agree to differ.

    @22 SaintOne

    >>"Why do you assume he was comparing Mariner to R. Addlington? Perhaps he speaks of another? You concluded he was referring to the Gold medal winning Addlington, but why? The fact he mentioned Addlington-nose and you assume it is a) an insult and b) about the swimmer shows you have some form of prejudice yourself!"

    Oh my, have I had a taste of my own medicine! Let me go away and consult some philosophy books to see if this argument can possibly be countered!!!

    Proud as you may be with this oldest and lamest of all strategies, let's actually examine it....Another Adlington? Name one? Thought so. Yawn....

    So you appear to be saying that noticing something is true about someone and saying it out loud for no reason lie the same on the good-evil scale? Being able to recognise someone else making an insult means you are also a bad person, as you must not SEE any possible blemishes (and lets not forget, eye of the beholder and all that.) in/on anyone? Is this your point?

    So, it's not ok to see such a blemish but ignore them (as I do)? You say I must not be able to even, in my own brain, acknowledge them or I am just as bad as one who brings it up for no reason on the BBC Sport website. I must in fact create a virtual reality in my own brain constantly or otherwise when i make the simple (and, erm, correct) deduction that I did, I am in fact just as bad as "Robbo". Give me a break.....actually, you're all right, this is pathetic. i concede.


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  • 79. At 8:08pm on 03 Aug 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    I've been away in Scotland for a few days, what did I miss? Apart from something to eat that isn't deep fried.

    Zoot and Trotter, what's with the moderation, have you 2 been misbehaving? Tut, tut.

    Being Irish obviously Sir Bobby never meant as much to me as the rest of you but of course I agree with everything good said about him.

    What has annoyed me the last few days was the usual media forgetfulness, I wonder how many of those who hounded him out of the England job in such a disgraceful way were at the head of the eulogising queue?

    And not forgetting any chance to bring up the "Hand Of God". For all of our sakes, yours included, let it go.

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  • 80. At 8:21pm on 03 Aug 2009, panchopuskas wrote:

    Thanks, Robbo, I share your feelings. Funny, though, how the old managers were a class apart as far as human qualities are concerned. Cloughie, for all his bluster was another fine man. I know somebody who knew him well and said he had a heart of gold. So, too, did Matt Busby, Laurie McMenemy, Bob Paisley and the great Bill Shankley. They also shared a great sense of humour, just like Bobby Robson, and didn't take themselves too seriously.
    How things have changed. It's almost too sad for words.

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  • 81. At 8:45pm on 03 Aug 2009, xpat73 wrote:

    Nice blog post. I still laugh at the 1988 Sun healdine after Robson's side lost or drew with Saudi Arabia...

    "England Mustapha New Manager"


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  • 82. At 8:57pm on 03 Aug 2009, bramwellpowers wrote:

    67. At 6:08pm on 03 Aug 2009, Friendlycard wrote:
    Why Newcastle sacked him - when he'd taken them from the relegation zone to 3rd in the league - baffles me to this day.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Not that more than a handful of fans wanted him replaced, but it should be noted that Newcastle had slipped back a touch by the time of Bobby's sacking (not so much a fifth place finish but a sense that the team were playing poorly), but not one person in Newcastle would have swapped him for Souness.
    Whether the decline came as a result of a lack of backing from Freddy Shepherd, who was too involved in pursuing his own transfer policy, or possibly his age, we'll never know. However a significant part was played by some of his team who behaved disgracefully at Middlesborough at the start of the season refusing to play in certain positions lest it dent their international prospects.
    This isn't the time or place to name individuals (some of whom have made their own touching tributes) but before this turns into another attack on Newcastle fans, the actions of some of the players should be highlighted.
    Unfortunately it wasn't the players involved who were moved on, but instead Robson was sacked and Newcastle have been suffering from a lack of commitment from their players ever since culminating in this seasons capitulation.

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  • 83. At 9:28pm on 03 Aug 2009, dinnaebetakenpicsoffoodyaradge wrote:

    Fergie?

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  • 84. At 10:07pm on 03 Aug 2009, paul hewson wrote:

    I hate to spoil the party, but March 1984.

    Robson out, Clough in badges.

    I got mine, from the Sun newspaper.


    He failed in 1984 and also by playing Hoddle in a free role in 1988.

    But this all seems to be forgotten.

    Nice men dont make great managers.
    We had one once.

    Called Dave Sexton, came second in the league and lost in FA cup.

    Err that was it.

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  • 85. At 10:21pm on 03 Aug 2009, robsep2b wrote:

    Bobby Robson - A Class Act ..... I cried when I heard the news that he'd passed away ..... and I cried even more when I saw some of the fabulous clips online about him. The pinacle has to be the 2007 award ceremony at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award. Forget what was said (which, considering it was all CLEARLY off the cuff, was simply magnificent and emphasised perfectly Sir Bobby's personality) and just focus on the applause ..... encapsulates the man for all to see.
    The pathetic bickering by people on here is an insult to him and his memory. I don't care WHAT your opinion is of Robbo the Blog ..... for once in your existance just draw breath ..... calm down ..... and remember the man who's touched the nation. Rest in peace my friend. It would be nice to think that good manners and compassion is not quite out of the equation yet .....

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  • 86. At 10:21pm on 03 Aug 2009, scottydog50 wrote:

    What happened to Nigel Clarke of the Daily Mirrow? Fried I hope!

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  • 87. At 10:21pm on 03 Aug 2009, scottydog50 wrote:

    What happened to Nigel Clarke of the Daily Mirror? Fried I hope!

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  • 88. At 10:33pm on 03 Aug 2009, Faustino wrote:

    Fully agree about the great Sir Bobby, just want to add that the Hall side of my family in Northumberland were also Border reivers. My Hall grandmother married a Scottish Cunningham, also known for banditry with a motto "Over fork over." It's debatable whether that was their highway tactics or their devotion to tilling the soil.

    I suspect I'm related to Sir John, who has the classic Hall receding-temple hairline, though I wouldn't celebrate it if proven.

    And for the record, I'm the nicest and most honest chap you'ld ever hope to meet (other than Sir Bobby).

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  • 89. At 10:54pm on 03 Aug 2009, IRW030370 wrote:

    A brilliant brilliant man.

    Other than him? Good question. There are people who will never get recognised, but have given just as much, if not more. Dario Grady, for example. Both him and Bobby are true servants.

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  • 90. At 10:57pm on 03 Aug 2009, mikelav wrote:

    Football will really miss Sir Bobby Robson and all he has done for the game.I had a chance to meet him and he absolute quality ,what a gentleman.RIP Sir Bobby Robson!!!

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  • 91. At 10:59pm on 03 Aug 2009, Hharry Hhotspur wrote:

    It's amazing how somebody's death can cloud people's thinking. To say that English football has never had a better ambassador than Sir Bobby Robson ignores the role played by the other Sir Bobby, i.e. Bobby Charlton. Sir Bobby C is renowned and amired the world over for his integrity, sense of fair play and loyalty.

    That said, Sir Bobby R was a fine manager and a fine man, who will be sorely missed by every lover of the game. Both Sir Bobbies share(d) the same decency and modesty - two attributes sadly lacking in so many major figures in today's game.

    RIP, Sir Bobby, you will be missed.

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  • 92. At 11:26pm on 03 Aug 2009, MelbourneSteve wrote:

    Just on Ferguson. I've lost count of the number of up and coming managers past and present who have revealed that they ring SAF for advice on occasion which he apparently is happy to give. Yes he's a hard bastard and doesn't like losing but he also appears to be generous in that way.

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  • 93. At 11:35pm on 03 Aug 2009, sheff_blue wrote:

    @84. Interesting post, shame it completely ignores the facts.

    Ipswich Town (hardly giants of the world game) won the FA Cup and UEFA Cup under Robson. They also repeatedly finished in high positions in the First Division including runners-up twice. Interestingly, during his thirteen year tenure, he brought in only 14 players from other clubs, relying instead on players developed through Ipswich's youth programmes.

    I'm sure even you know that Robson is England's most successful manager after Ramsey and achieved the country's best world cup finish overseas, so I'll move on. He then went to Holland to manage PSV, who won the Dutch league in both the 199091 and 199192 seasons. He then went to Portugal, where he was sacked in December 1993 with the club sitting at top of the league table for the first time in fifteen years. However, Porto recognised his extraordinary achievement so immediately hired him.

    Porto were in a poor state when Robson arrived and the average attendance had dwindled to 10,000. The club promptly went on to beat Robson's former club, Sporting, in the Portuguese Cup final, following that achievement with successive League titles in the 199495 and 199596 seasons. Suffering from malignant melanoma and missing the first few months of the 199596 season, Robson still successfully led Porto in defence of their league title.

    Robson took over at Barcelona in July 1996, for a brief spell during which Barcelona won the Spanish Cup, Spanish Super Cup and European Cup Winners' Cup. He later returned to manage PSV on a short-term deal for the 199899 season. PSV missed out on the league title, finishing third, but Robson still led the club to qualification for the Champions League on the last day of the season.

    As has been documented above, Robson then worked his magic at Newcastle,
    including 2 top 4 finishes and Champions League football.

    So - a glittering career all over Europe and at both club and international level. To compare his achievements to Dave Sexton's is pathetic.

    RIP Sir Bobby

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  • 94. At 11:37pm on 03 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    GAZUTD

    Well, we responded to #66 and were either moderated or complained about, no idea who would do that! It might be the case that JesusFChrist is in fact the very same Hand Of God, just now unfortunately attached to a keyboard.

    Perhaps you can pen something appropriate that won't be moderated?

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  • 95. At 11:37pm on 03 Aug 2009, vestrypark wrote:

    Never supported a team managed by him, never knew him as a player but what I saw of him as a person was remarkable, absolutely loveable man who always had a great smile that showed compassion and understanding to all. He was absolutely superb as a manager and is a TRUE legend. He will live forever in my memory and I dont think there will be anyone like him again. Sir Bobby the legend of legends

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  • 96. At 00:13am on 04 Aug 2009, Jordan D wrote:

    SPOTY 2007. Lifetime Achievement Award for Sir Bobby. The standing ovation and the presentation given by Sir Alex still to this day make the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

    A man respected by his peers, and loved by his public. A gentleman and a man who will be utterly missed.

    Robbo - definitely on the mark this week. Sir Bobby - Rest In Peace.

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  • 97. At 00:57am on 04 Aug 2009, Carlonso wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 98. At 02:09am on 04 Aug 2009, Sarfend4ever wrote:

    I ran into Bobby on a beach in Bermuda where I live and told him I thought it unfair how the newspapers had pilloried him before he was replaced. He simply smiled and walked on thinking of course (a) how insightful I was and (b) what a pain in the whatsits it is to run into some idiot on the beach when he's trying to cool out. I think this counts as meeting him even though he said nothing at any point.

    This said I cannot think of a manager since him that counts as a quality individual as well as a decent manager. 1990 remains an agonising time for me and I will always remember how it was that a team that bad could go so far and put it down to Bobby's abilities.

    RIP -- you deserve all the praise that you receive although it does grate that those who whined so much before can now hold you up for the respect you truly deserve. And you do. Your like will likely be never seen again in the current monied times, more is the pity.

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  • 99. At 02:40am on 04 Aug 2009, theurbaneguerilla wrote:

    Farewell Sir Bobby.

    What a canny man.
    Who did more than many can.
    Got England to a semi-final,
    Despite the FA's lack of spinal.

    Never cursed his luck.
    Never passed the buck.
    Never acted unprofessional.
    Always honest in the press confessional.

    Played for his national team.
    Honoured by his nation's Queen.
    Forgot some famous players' names.
    Had more wins than losing games.

    Sir Bobby was an honest chap,
    Not given to dramatic flap.
    His character unstained,
    Through lessons that his life ingrained.

    No tribute to you can surpass
    Your genuine, undoubted class.
    Your legacy will linger on.

    So fare thee well,
    Sir Bobby Robson.

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  • 100. At 03:29am on 04 Aug 2009, Footnotes wrote:

    Top man indeed. Sincere respect and gratitude to the Robson family. For English football management, sadly, I think it's all over.

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  • 101. At 06:36am on 04 Aug 2009, etienne123 wrote:

    Isn't Adlington in Chroley, where Paul Mariner's from? Do they all have big conks there?

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  • 102. At 08:31am on 04 Aug 2009, redandblackT-Save 606 wrote:

    Great tribute to a great man.By the way R.Addlington looks like Gonzo from the muppet show!http://img133.imageshack.us/img133/8919/gonzo2cz7.jpg

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  • 103. At 08:53am on 04 Aug 2009, markadoi84 wrote:

    #78 - enjpmm

    I think perhaps you should listen to Robbo's latest demo tape (a cover of 'Big Mouth Strikes Again' by the Smiths) to cheer you up. Regardless of that, can I assume that derisory remarks concerning somebody's looks can only be made towards people that you personally dislike? I think you go on to call other people contradictory after that...strange, or perhaps you have a sharp sense of irony? I also fear you are also both sexist and ageist, as you suggest it is unfair to pick on a "20 year old girl". Of course you wouldn't take offense to people mocking Gary Lineker's ears, as he's a 40-something year old male - and perhaps one you dislike as well. How generous of you to stick up for the weak.

    How is that complaint coming along by the way? Speaking of which, I may make my own complaint - what about your insulting insinuations regarding poor Mariner? You seem to think has such a terrible nose that one should not dare compare it with somebody elses. Shame on you, sir. Furthermore, Robbo never said anything derogatory about Addlington's hooter, he merely implied that Mariner has a similar one. Therefore you expose your own prejudice towards Addlington's nose by immediately interpreting this to be derogatory. Now, go make yourself a nice cup of tea, calm down a bit, and and once you've done that, get a life.

    "I think people should be treated according to how they behave." Then I assume you will understand the reaction to your pathetic post.

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  • 104. At 09:23am on 04 Aug 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    Terrific blog Robbo.

    Just a shame that even on a blog dedicated to the passing of a great man there's some idiots who have nothing better to do than insult you.

    Says a lot about their character if you ask me ...

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  • 105. At 09:40am on 04 Aug 2009, WabitElmerFudd wrote:

    Its weird, something pulled me home to Suffolk on Friday morning from where I live near Milton Keynes, then during the journey the news came through that we have all expected for a couple of years, that Bobby had lost his last fight against cancer; but it still came as a hammer blow. Listening to Alan Brazil on Talksport, then BBC Radio Suffolk most of the day while I did little jobs around my holiday homes in Blythburgh and Southwold with tears running down my face.

    I couldnt get to Portman Road for the minute silence, but was able to place some blue-flowers beside his statue before going into the ground at about 8 oclock. Very disappointed that only 5-6,000 attended on this special occasion, but in the 2nd half the chants and the standing up and clapping for Bobby was very special.

    I was lucky enough to see Robson's first and last games at Portman Road and probably only missed about 15-20 during those 13 wonderful years. Being at Carrow Road when we lifted the Texaco Cup, at Wembley for the FA Cup and Amsterdam for the UEFA cup where obvious highlights, but the quality of that 80-82 team was amazing, and 11 against 11 would walk over most teams of today, remember we were runners-up twice in the era when Liverpool, Forest and Villa where European Cup winners.

    I am also not proud to admit, I was in the north stand as a spotty oik chanting Robson Out the night George Best almost beat us on his own, but thankfully "Mr John" had 100% more sense than us idiots. I also often disagreed with what went on at the Club, but looking back I now realise he believed the Club must always come first, so he resisted buying Pat Jennings or Chris Woods, or another defender when Beattie played guy fawkes, or, or or which would have made us that extra 1% better to have lifted more trophies.

    I have had 3 brothers die of cancer, and if there is a football ground up there I know they will be now very proud that Shankly, Stein, Paisley, Ramsey, Revie, Greenwood and Clough will be worried because Bobby is now up there with them to pick a team for us. Actually, my oldest brother was a real 'Ramsey man', and felt that Bobby would never top what Alf did for us and England, and he was sadly proved right.

    Ipswich supporters NEVER turned against Bobby during tough times when he was with England and elsewhere, so it makes me very angry to hear the hypocrisy of some journalists (who vilified him), Newcastle supporters (who spat at him) and Newcastle directors (who sh@t on him) for them to be leading the praise of OUR Bobby.

    I know the great man would have been very chuffed to know that a 16 year old kid scored such a great goal for Ipswich on Friday night, he believed in the kids, kept the goods ones and moved on the others, lets hope the new regime are doing the same thing.

    In all the years he was associated with Town I only spoke to his 3 times, but will always remember how he replied to my question (when I think he was manager of Porto and back for a book signing) what do you think of Ipswich now?, his reply (which he has also said in TV interviews, Ipswich will always be close to me heart, and they are the biggest little club in the world. Says, it all GREAT MAN.

    www.itfc-blues.com

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  • 106. At 10:22am on 04 Aug 2009, bramwellpowers wrote:

    Comment 105 is disgraceful.

    To slate Newcastle fans for leading tributes to Sir Bobby because a handful spat at him (I'll take your word for it as it was before I was born)when he was England, not Newcastle, manager is pathetic.

    Fans in the north-east contributed £1.5m to his foundation for cancer research and treatment ( for anyone wanting to donate) and over 33,000 turned up to a friendly last week to show their appreciation when most are pretty fed up with football at the moment, and thousands more were out of the country who would love to have gone. Listen to the reception he got and look at what it meant to him.

    What do you gain by saying such juvenile things?

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  • 107. At 10:50am on 04 Aug 2009, Rovers Return - HKR AWAY DAYS wrote:

    There's only one Bobby Robson. RIP.

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  • 108. At 10:52am on 04 Aug 2009, lordSUPERFRED wrote:

    Niicholson , Lyall, Paisley, Busby , gentleman all , but the king and LAST of a breed was Robson .
    His legacy goes back to Haynes and Hill , pre maximum wage , he was one of the few from that era whose head was not turned by money when the floodgates opened in the 90,s .Contract and gentlemens agreement was his his ethos .
    Loved and respected by all who came into his contact , we will miss the passing of this man , perhaps only Zola will carry the flag for the gentleman now

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  • 109. At 10:53am on 04 Aug 2009, Eddy Cordoza wrote:

    Re 54. dandolinho
    Just couldn't resist, could you?

    On subject: Bobby Robson - great manager, greater bloke.

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  • 110. At 11:11am on 04 Aug 2009, RedDevil4Life wrote:

    Top blog written about a top bloke. R.I.P Bobby - You will always be remembered for being a great Manager and a great guy!

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  • 111. At 11:26am on 04 Aug 2009, Were Ngoging to Ibiza wrote:

    "We didn't underestimate them, they were just a lot better than we thought"
    RIP Sir Bobby, despite the effort of some puerile muppet who is more interested in defending the honour of some hook nosed watery bint who i am sure would show complete indifference to the comments than he is about remembering the greatest man in football, you'll never be forgotten

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  • 112. At 11:31am on 04 Aug 2009, Sanjay100 wrote:

    Sir Bobby had human qualities that no amount of money can buy. His passion wasn't just his work, but clearly he was genuinely, deep down passionate about the people who he came into contact with. This is why football itself is not enough to define the person.

    It is also right to pay a tribute to Mrs Robson and her family. If they are reading this, then for all the right reasons your husband lives on in people's hearts and minds.

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  • 113. At 11:32am on 04 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    Wish I'd never mentioned Rebecca Adlington. I will never compare the noses of a comtemporary freestyle swimmer with that of a clumsy but strangely successful lunk of a centre-forward ever again. Jeez!

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  • 114. At 11:45am on 04 Aug 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    Ref 113

    It was always a difficult pitch, delivering a suitable tribute to a fine man (appropriate in what is essentially a footy blog) in a manner in keeping with the much-loved (by most of us) Robbo column.

    I thought you did it rather well, myself. Posting 3 summed it up succinctly and pretty much perfectly.

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  • 115. At 12:07pm on 04 Aug 2009, b20villa wrote:

    Sir Bobby was IMO a true gentleman and a very good manager. I wonder now how those Newcastle players who behaved the way they did now hang their heads in shame. I wouldn't mind betting that some of those overpaid shameless "my manager doesn't love me enough" types have paid tribute to this great man. The same can be said for some of those tabloid "red top" papers. I have never supported one of Sir Bobby's teams and have had a season ticket since the 1970's for another premiership club however I can say in all honesty if he had ever been appointed the manager of "my club" I would have been happy. IMO it was so called "player power" that meant Sir Bobby leaving his beloved Newcastle. Just to prove what a shambles the club has become over the last few years, I was at the match when Gareth Barry had to separate Kieron Dyer and a certain Lee Bowyer to prevent them knocking nine bells out of each other. What would Newcastle supporters give to be in the poisition they were in when Sir Bobby was sacked?

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  • 116. At 12:07pm on 04 Aug 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    113 & 114 (and 3): Yeah spot on fellas... Thier is always someone who will be a tool... as is life! Little ashamed of myself for taking the bait. So many have mentioned that Sir Bobby was above that sort of thing, something which sets him apart from the modern crop of managers, a reminder to take wind up merchants with a pinch of salt...

    Hey i just learnt something of value, i feel like the Grinch when his heart grows in size!

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  • 117. At 12:08pm on 04 Aug 2009, b20villa wrote:

    Sorry "poisition" should read position.

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  • 118. At 12:16pm on 04 Aug 2009, whatbill wrote:

    Why is it fine to say Mariner's nose is massive but not Adlington's?

    Bobby Robson RIP.

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  • 119. At 12:16pm on 04 Aug 2009, bredtobered-forum troll wrote:

    78. At 8:06pm on 03 Aug 2009, enjpmm wrote:

    a load of tripe.


    my bet is you have a massive snout yourself. its the only explination as to why your getting so worked up. I know becky from school and she wouldn't be bothered about robbos comparisons so you'll have to be a pedant somewhere else pal.


    RIP sir bobby.





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  • 120. At 12:37pm on 04 Aug 2009, Gareth dareth more than others wrote:

    Whilst I agree wholeheartedly with all the tributes to Sir Bobby I would say that one other manager inspired similar feelings f being universally loved and that was Martin Jol.

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  • 121. At 12:48pm on 04 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    Actually I have one criticisim for the great man. Turns out that as a young player he chose Fulham over Middlesbrough. Unthinkable. Tch.

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  • 122. At 12:51pm on 04 Aug 2009, WabitElmerFudd wrote:


    "Our Bobby" was to good to bicker over, so just for clarifcation to '106' I wish he would have read my comments before getting out of your pram.

    Please note the word 'some' and it makes no difference if you were or were not born, it was a FACT that Geordies turned on him when he dropped KK from the England squad.

    As for the £1.5m this is a fine achiement, and you may be aware that a chunk of that money came from East Anglia.

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  • 123. At 1:00pm on 04 Aug 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Ah yes, Fulham, heart of the capital. Beside the river. Nice restaurants, shopping, parks and nightlife.

    Who would ever put that before Middlesbrough. Unthinkable.

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  • 124. At 1:18pm on 04 Aug 2009, m-high-ty-mariner wrote:

    Fitting tribute to a wonderful man and manager.
    The press claim to be reporting the news, and the views of the person in the street, yet it's not until they have passed away that they give the respect and adoration they deserve.
    I am not picking on the BBC, but the tabloid newspapers. I met an ex manager who was vilified by the press, who was and still is a good man.

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  • 125. At 1:39pm on 04 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    123

    Chuckle chuckle chuckle

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  • 126. At 1:43pm on 04 Aug 2009, bramwellpowers wrote:

    Re 105 and 122 I read your comments. Fact- You were clearly complaining of hypocrisy that Newcastle fans led tributes to Sir Bobby after some spat on him whilst he was England manager.

    Fact - I didn't say Newcastle fans did or didn't do this, so I'm not sure why you've repeated yourself.

    Fact - Ipswich fans turned on Bobby a few years into the job to the extent that the chairman apologised to him for their behaviour.

    To apply your logic you shouldn't be saying anything decent about him. Or we can all praise his great achievements, please yourself about what he achieved as a manager, but certainly what he achieved in life, no matter who we support instead of taking any opportunity to ridicule fans from other clubs.

    And it is a big nose. It can't be denied.

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  • 127. At 2:09pm on 04 Aug 2009, dyrewolfe wrote:

    Brilliant tribute Robbo.


    Farewell Sir Bobby. You may be gone but you will never be forgotten. Its an amazing and rare thing for one person (especially a footballer / manager) to have touched so many peoples' lives in such a positive way, both in his chosen profession and with his charity work.

    Thanks to both of the above, his legacy and his memory will live on.

    To echo sentiments already expressed here, we could do with a few more like Bobby, especially in today's money-obsessed, egocentric version of the sport he loved.

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  • 128. At 2:31pm on 04 Aug 2009, StratfordBlade wrote:

    Good tribute to a top man of your Robson tribe, young Del!

    Says it all really. The first I heard of the demise of one MJ Jackson was a rather bad taste joke sent to my mobile. Nearly all public figures will attract this sort of thing in this day and age. They may have been ultra-successful, earned the GNP of a small country but with most there is a foible, a fault, a failing that leaves them open to ridicule, even in their death. Ignore the press (hypocrisy personified), don't take too much notice of the bizarre behaviour masquerading as support from those that follow the game, but check the response of ordinary Joe Public. Watch the various forums, chats, letters and reactions that are aired. I have seen no jokes, sick or otherwise. No comments along the lines, 'Yeah, he was good, but..........' You got none of that because in a sport known for it's pettiness and back-stabbing, Sir Bobby never, ever let go of his roots, his background and upbringing. Working-class principles and attitudes of a bygone age personified in his dignity, when people did their best to drag him down. A real gentleman who was a credit to his family, his town, his class, his region, his country and humanity in general.

    RIP Sir Bobby. Quality!

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  • 129. At 2:33pm on 04 Aug 2009, Friendlycard wrote:

    82: bramwellpowers:

    "Not that more than a handful of fans wanted him replaced".

    Good point, and I didn't mean for a moment that the fans were responsible. I think the fans knew very well that Sir Bobby had made Newcastle top-of-the-table contenders whereas, when he arrived, they'd been in relegation danger. Sacking Sir Bobby was a daft decision by the board in defiance of fans' wishes, and in defiance of common sense as well. I'm sure that, if the fans had been asked, they'd have kept him as manager. Newcastle's owners seem to have an established history of bad decisions when the fans could have told them they were making a mistake. Newcastle fans deserve far better than the way this great club has been run in recent years.

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  • 130. At 2:38pm on 04 Aug 2009, dyrewolfe wrote:

    To the folks getting their panties in a twist over Robbo's comparison of Rebecca Adlingtona nd Paul Mariner...I think you need to take a reality check.

    It was just a throw-away comment with a grain of truth in it...hardly what you could classify as a personal attack on either Paul or Becca.

    I've certainly heard (well, read) worse on the 606 forums. Some unkind soul went as far as to say the reason she's so fast is she has a shark-fin on her face!

    Personally, I think she's a bonny lass, as well as being a great swimmer.

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  • 131. At 3:56pm on 04 Aug 2009, blades_and_barca wrote:

    Whatever tribute you catch, you'll hear nothing about 4-3-1-2, 'Christmas Tree', "Second Ball" or any of that tactical stuff. Bobby Robson achieved what he achieved -a helluvalot- by recognising that football is, quintessentially, a simple game. That's not demeaning the great man - and there were of course subtleties to his approach. But, ultimately, he won what he won by getting the most out of his players, whether they were untried 17-year olds or old pros like Shearer. He commanded the right mixture of fear and respect. Sounds so simple, doesn't it? Yet, if it were, we'd all be winning Championships across the Continent - and coming within inches and horrors of winning World Cups...

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  • 132. At 4:42pm on 04 Aug 2009, Blue_Baby40 wrote:

    #41 - Anyway, as always, somebody's nose gets put out of joint!

    In this case, poor old Becky's...

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  • 133. At 5:04pm on 04 Aug 2009, Strummer wrote:

    I have never really enjoyed your blog but here you have written a gem,a great mix of humour and respect which is how Sir Bobby seemed to live his life.Bravo to you and to the most part of the posters

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  • 134. At 5:19pm on 04 Aug 2009, nigeweir wrote:

    Beautifully written as per usual Robbo, you covered it all.
    People die everyday and yet the passing of this fella bothers me.
    RIP to a wonderful human being.

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  • 135. At 5:32pm on 04 Aug 2009, BeyondThePale wrote:

    Blessed are the big-noses.

    And cursed are those who can't help but prattle on about curmudgeonly old tossrs who have neither the wit nor wisdom to test themselves outside their comfort zones, preferring instead to hang around for decades in the same job out of pure bitterness.

    Sir Robert Robson, RIP.

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  • 136. At 6:00pm on 04 Aug 2009, onthebreak wrote:

    http://onthebreak.wordpress.com/2009/08/04/rich-mens-missions-and-tenuous-positions/

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  • 137. At 6:04pm on 04 Aug 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Things we have learned from this weeks blog....


    a) Sir Bobby was a gent and respected by nearly all
    b) You can insult the look of any man on the face of the planet but you may not say anything at all bad about a woman.

    In other news scientists have discovered that there are a large portion of lonely males who have never had a girlfriend and spend an inordinate amount of time on the internet.
    You can usually view this phenomenon by saying something bad about a woman anywhere on the internet. The pack of wild males will usually jump to her defence in the hope that other women will be impressed and maybe speak to them.

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  • 138. At 6:18pm on 04 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    ....and once again Gaz proves that he has a nose for the truth!

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  • 139. At 8:01pm on 04 Aug 2009, kevfullo wrote:

    Well in Robbo, nicely put.I'm sure I'll never say this again in response to your blog but you speak for everyone this time!
    I'd like to see a few more people in public life show the common decency and honesty that Sir Bobby did. I never met him meself but you always got the impression that the feller you saw on telly would be the same one that you see at home or in the pub. A sad loss all round, I don't think we will ever see the likes of him again in footy do you?

    R.I.P.Sir Bob

    cheers Robbo.

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  • 140. At 8:08pm on 04 Aug 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    123. At 1:00pm on 04 Aug 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    Ah yes, Fulham, heart of the capital. Beside the river. Nice restaurants, shopping, parks and nightlife.

    Who would ever put that before Middlesbrough. Unthinkable.

    _________________________________________________________________________

    This from a United fan, so clearly you'll know West London intimately. Besides, we've got a river. And restaurants - some of them have tables and chairs in them that aren't nailed down. We have parks and shops and nightlife too, it's just that when the wind comes from the wrong direction it's hard to see all that through the smog and the whiff of parmo.

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  • 141. At 8:17pm on 04 Aug 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    140
    Robbo, in what year did Sir Bobby face this difficult decision? All those years ago your main attractions were a greyhound flapping track and bingo.

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  • 142. At 8:22pm on 04 Aug 2009, sandcastlejim wrote:

    nice blog Robbo - we all agree that Sir Bobby Robson was first and foremost a decent bloke.
    Also we all know what a bunch of hypocrites the tabloids are. Can't believe the tributes they've been coming up with - don't remember much of that during his England tenure.

    And final point, I agree with others that your comments on Adlington are cruel and uncalled for.
    Would Sir Bobby have stooped that low ? I think we all know the answer.

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  • 143. At 8:42pm on 04 Aug 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    140

    Now Robbo you know I come from Ireland, along with a lot of other United supporters.

    Mind you, one time when I was flying over for a game (I fly to Newcastle, don't ask) there was a Boro fan on the plane.

    I can only assume he was Boro born and bread and moved to Ireland for some reason. Although he didn't look like he came from Boro, he had all his fingers and his eyes weren't crossed. (Thankfully he also didn't have a big nose because if I had to say that it could have gotten ugly).

    Although I'd never heard of that Parmo before, the pics look wonderful, pity I went to Weightwatchers last week. Life isn't fair.

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  • 144. At 9:32pm on 04 Aug 2009, Spitfire wrote:

    140: Let it go Robbo.

    We all do crazy things when young.

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  • 145. At 00:13am on 05 Aug 2009, FaveColourBeige wrote:

    shrimpkebab you missed out 'great player' - 20 England caps when they were like golddust - my 86 year old mum told me and she could probably name only a few other players eg best, greaves, charlton etc.

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  • 146. At 10:42am on 05 Aug 2009, Carlonso wrote:

    Hmmm REF 97
    I see my cockney rhyming slang towards the gutter press didn't go down well with the moderators...
    To Sir Bobby...

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  • 147. At 11:36am on 05 Aug 2009, geezerAussiedave wrote:

    I was very lucky to have met Sir Bobby on a couple of occasions and to say he was a perfet gentleman would be an understatement.
    He made me feel like I was the most important person he had met on both occasions.
    He took the time to talk to me, and gave me an address to write to him at.
    And took the trouble to reply to me personally.
    Being a Nottingham Forest fan I had always wanted to meet (Sir)Brian Clough, which I did, but I was equally thrilled when I met Sir Bobby.
    I do not think we will ever see the likes of him again, his passion for the game, his entusiasm, his knowledge, his modesty, and above all his ability to associate with the average football fan.
    He never compalined once about the way he was treated by England, Barcelona and finally his beloved Newcastle, Sir Bobby just carried on and thrilled us all.
    LEGEND is used all to often, Now that Sir Bobby has passed away, they should now retire the word legend, as it would not be fitting to use for anyone else.
    R.I.P Sir Bobby and God Bless all your family amd friends.

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  • 148. At 3:39pm on 05 Aug 2009, gfdsghf wrote:

    a great testimonial for a great man.
    http://ofcn.cn/r3e4

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  • 149. At 5:09pm on 05 Aug 2009, Koko2010 wrote:

    "I can't think of a current manager who is so highly regarded as a human being"..
    Well he deserves all the respect, to bad the game no longer is what it was once ..

    http://www.footballforums.com

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  • 150. At 08:57am on 06 Aug 2009, DrCajetanCoelho wrote:


    What a fine tribute to the kindest person I ever met. Thanks Robbo.

    I live with this great feeling of having enjoyed my Christmas meal with Sir Bobby Robson at Estoril on the outskirts of Lisbon way back in the early 1990s. Mrs. Robson was right there making me feel at ease with the nicest human being I met.


    Farewell Sir Bobby !




    Dr. Cajetan Coelho

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  • 151. At 4:21pm on 06 Aug 2009, Faz wrote:

    @ joedavisroach

    My guess is that you didnt see "Robbo" because he is not, in fact, real. He is an annoying little character invented by some talentless journalist in the bbc who was a failed comedian.

    Any road......

    -----------------------------------------------------------

    Wow! talk about bitter and twisted. Somebody I regarded as talentless I would never take the time to read. Why are you here?

    Maybe you should head over to youtube and hang out with all the 12 yr old flamers. You should have fun there!

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  • 152. At 6:50pm on 06 Aug 2009, Harold Cohen wrote:

    Yes booby was a great person but, didnt he dropp Garry Linneker thus preserving Bobby Charlton's 49 goals for england!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Which Garry would have eclipsed

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  • 153. At 9:29pm on 09 Aug 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    I met Sir Bobby Robson on 2nd April 2003.

    I was fortunate enough to be invited to the post match dinner at The Stadium of Light when England played Turkey in a Euro 2004 qualifier (England won 2-0).

    In the room, amongst others, were Gary Lineker, Alan Hansen, Peter Reid, Mick McCarthy, Sir Peter Vardy and so on and so forth. Lots of very well known folk from football.

    One man stood head and shoulders above them all. He was polite, confident, affable, approachable and immensely warm. I spoke to him briefly, perhaps for 4-5 minutes at most, along with a colleague of mine who obtained his autograph. I wish, to this day, I had spent more time talking to him, yet ultimately didn't want to deprive others of the opportunity of talking to this enigmatic symbol of English football. Thinking back, maybe I was a little over awed.

    After all, I am of an age where I very vividly recall his reign at the helm of England, and even his time at Ipswich Town. So to me, Sir Bobby was a true icon of English footie and a man I had immense sympathy for because of his shocking treatment by the tabloids in the wake of his departure from the England job.

    Sympathy is a poor word for it. It was really admiration for him and contempt for the headline seeking journos who knew little better.

    Unlike others in the room, some of whom did not endear themselves to those in attednance, Sir Bobby lived up to and surpassed by expectation. A Knight - the true definition of one.

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