The man with the suckiest job

2009-10-06 00:00

SPARE a thought for a footballer. Not the football stars who are paid lavish sums, then throw that cash at fast cars and faster women  — even in the midst of a credit crunch  — with little thought for the suffering masses around them.

Because what happens when they don’t get paid? Do we snigger slyly at the thought of ignorant starlets getting a taste of reality?

Portsmouth FC are in a bit of a pickle. Dodgy owner after dodgy owner has tried to make a fast buck at the south coast club, but to no avail. They are sinking financially, and their football has gone to pot, too.

Portsmouth players didn’t get their pay cheques at the end of last month. Something to do with an electronic transfer glitch.


You know that there are big problems when an English Premiership club cannot roll out the dough timeously. They did nothing but sell in the last two transfer windows, yet they have already exhausted their cash. And the season is barely two months old.

They lost seven league matches in a row to launch their season, but they somehow won at Wolves on Saturday.

Talk about desperate times.

But, let us for a minute spare a thought for a footballer.

And not just any footballer. It is our national captain, who also happens to be the skipper at Portsmouth.

Is there no end to the sufferings of Aaron Mokoena? I mean, most Bafana stars/flops (delete according to your opinion) at least play for successful clubs in obscure European countries, where they can briefly forget the stresses of losing regularly on the world stage.

But not our Aaron.

He hops off one funeral procession, gathers his thoughts, and then heads off for more drama at his club.

Could there be a bigger sucker for punishment?

Sure, his £30 000 a week is a source of comfort — when they eventually land in his account — but how much mental strength does it take to keep believing?

So let’s spare a thought for our national captain.

Quite what state he will be in come next June is a perilous thought. He is already showing signs of losing his mind, as he decided to kick a lump out of Bafana’s sole source of creativity, Steven Pienaar, when they faced off in a recent league game.

He watched every half-decent player at Fratton Park depart even before he had completed his initiation routine.

Harry Redknapp keeps on looting them for what talent is left, while the latest Arab owner is more interested in posing with Pamela Anderson than sorting out the club’s fiscal state.

Mokoena is a man in desperate need of a holiday to Afghanistan or somewhere, so that he can see that life is not perhaps as bad as he may think every morning.

Six losses in a row for Bafana, and another seven straight spankings at Portsmouth.

Despite the money, Mokoena has every right to lay claim to having the suckiest job in the world.

Captain of not one, but two toothless teams who have turned losing into an art form.

So spare a thought for our Aaron, a man in need of a really big shoulder to cry on.

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