Some of you may be young enough to not.
It’s Gareth Southgate in a Pizza Hut advert following his miss at Euro 1996 against Germany.
This isn’t about football, to be honest, so keep reading…
After 1996 Gareth Southgate was the villain (not only because he played for Villa). His face was all over the front of the Sun. I expect he’s pretty pleased Twitter didn’t exist at the time.
He’s broken the hearts of boys and girls (and men and women) up and down the country and had to put up with a lot of abuse.
So, this is a question for you. Had you been him and been watched by millions of people, relying on you, and you let them down, how would you have reacted?
Well, when Southgate was appointed as England manager, my mind went back to that moment. I thought, ‘why him?’ what message does this deliver to the team??
So many people would’ve (and have) crumbled and shied away into the background, never to have to answer a question about that moment again.
When you saw the lineup during England vs Germany, I thought it was poor. So much talent sat on the bench. Anyone else with me? I’m not the only one, Social Media will show you that.
Throughout all of this, Gareth Southgate has had absolute self-belief. He knows what he stands for, and when you have that, you can make decisions that people will criticise you for and still believe in yourself.
My (unqualified) opinion has completely changed. In the background, Gareth Southgate has gone about his work, made the hard decisions, created a team in his vision, a winning culture, with players who share his values. He’s shown loyalty to players who have never let him down whilst the rest of the nation calls for them to be dropped. He stayed strong, and now people are getting behind him.
This is what leaders do, and it takes a particular character with traits that we look for in our franchisees, passion, drive, and self-belief.
You speak well (that message before the euros ?). You can get a nation behind you. You have made your own decisions, and you’ve shown a long term drive to take England to the top.
So, this is an open invitation to a Mr G Southgate.
Whatever happens in the last game of the Euros, we’ll help you get started with Southgataways.com. You can run this business part-time and even from the comfort of your San Merino hotel if you want to.
We’ll sort all of the systems, structure and bonding, allowing you to do what you do best. Lead.
You’ll fit in well here.
After all your old manager Alan Smith said it on the BBC.…. “I had a doubt whether or not he had a career in professional football in him. We had one particular game, which we lost, and I called him into the office and said: “Gareth, I think you’re too bright to do this job. I think you have to make a choice. If it was my choice, I think you should become a travel agent.“
Chris (he’s our Training and Development Executive) is from Cambridge, and I’m sure he has a series of waistcoats, so you won’t be alone wearing them at the conference.
Our two directors are Villa fans, and we’ll give you more support than Rice and Phillips give the back four, and we know how good that’s been.
You’re in safer hands than Pickford’s, and you’ll have your own Steve Holland, our Support Manager Jenna.
Even for you, our full franchise fee would still stand, no dodgy discounts here, but we know where poor ethics gets you, just ask your predecessor Sam Allardyce.
We know that you have a great network around you, and I’m sure that Raheem with replay the loyalty you’ve shown him with some Sterling, but if you don’t want to rely on that, we’ll show you how to market your business efficiently. Good luck in the final, and when you’re ready to get started with your own brand in travel, in your own vision, think Holiday Franchise Company.