Sunday, 14 February 2010
Etherington Betting On A Loser?
Chilling to read Etherington's comments about the gambling he was involved in whilst at Upton Park. I must admit that I thought the problem was confined to betting on the horses (I heard he owed one bookie a fortune). However, that was far from the case as Matty reveals.
Etherington said: "There were card schools at West Ham and it did get a little bit out of hand. People were taking three, four, five grand on the bus with them. When that was gone, you were borrowing more.
"You could win 20 grand or lose 20 grand on a single journey, which is ludicrous. Then some would play in their rooms. It wouldn't just stop on the bus.
"It can't be good for team morale. Any normal human being, if you are losing a lot of money, you are not going to be happy about it and you are going to resent the person taking it off you.
"You could be going out onto a pitch knowing that your win bonus or appearance money that day is more or less down the drain because you have lost it already. Alan Pardew stopped it, which he was right to do."
It is good to see that Pardew put a stop to it but why was it allowed to start in the first place? These footballers really are a stupid breed of people aren't they?
The big question is, with a gambling culture like this, have they ever thrown a game in order to recover debts? We know Mark Ward once hoofed the ball into touch directly from a kick off in order to claim on a bet for the time of the first throw in; have there been more serious examples, such as conceding an early goal deliberately? With the sums of money involved, it seems probable that the game may be far from clean.
Posted by Hammersfan at 11:34