Sick of all that adoration? Tired of being a legend to millions? Wish that sea of love and respect would just wash away? What you need is the (not yet) patented Alex and Stevie Sure-fire Guide to Pissing All Over Your Legacy (TASSGTPAOYL)!
A joint production from one-time rivals Sir Alex Ferguson and Steven Gerrard, TASSGTPAOYL can GUARANTEE you go from fan favourite to lift-farter levels of popularity in just five easy steps!
First off, timing is of the essence! The sooner you incorporate TASSGTPAOYL the better, especially if you’ve been synonymous with one club for most of your career. After all, you don’t want to keep a dignified silence and cement your mythical God-like status like a Le Tissier, a Dalglish or a Bergkamp, do you?!
No, what you need is to release a damaging, vindictive tome as soon as the door hits your arse on the way out. And if said tome can be released at a time so as to pile even more pressure on your erstwhile employers? Why, all’s the better!
Next up you need to consider the contents and tone of your soon-to-be gift to the pulping world. As discussed in One, your book should be vindictive. Finger-pointing, scapegoating and score-settling is the order of the day. Blame is the only game in town!
A former manager didn’t give you enough hugs? Why you need to slay the swine and question his professional ability! Some world class ex-players left on bad terms? No problem, just dismiss their contributions and try to convince the world they weren’t all that in the first place!
When penning your opus facts and irrefutable evidence can be a right pain in the arse! What you need to do is completely re-write history!! Never mind that the entire world knows you personally hand-picked your successor who turned out to be about as much use as a chocolate kettle, you need to set the record bent and wash your hands of all culpability!
Left a stale, steaming turd of a squad for your successor to inherit? Not to worry, a few deluded paragraphs will surely convince the masses that black is white and, as always, you are right!
Of course the most important thing to remember is to make your book self-serving. After all, why go to all that bother of meeting some hack with a dictaphone in a Holiday Inn for three full hours unless it’s to fully serve your needs?!
Bitter your former employers didn’t offer you a coaching role despite displaying zero tactical acumen throughout your career and for which you’re not even qualified anyway? Why not use it as a stick to beat the bejaysus out of them!
Feeling embarrassed that you only won two fluky European Cups in 20 attempts with the richest club in the world? Well shoo that shame away by blaming a restrictive wage structure which meant you could only outspend 99% of your rivals.
Of course, the mere fact that you’ve written a book shouldn’t make you complacent and think the job of pissing all over your legacy is now complete. After all, you don’t just want your message to reach the type of barely literate simpletons stupid enough to actually go out and buy football autobiographies.
No, you need to penetrate the earholes of every poor bastard on the planet so you need to….promote the shit out of your book! TV, radio, rolling sports news channels, internet, social media – there’s never been more ways to propagate your vindictive, self-serving revisionist claptrap!
Leaving gaps of no longer than five minutes between each interview, you need to pepper the airwaves, clog up the wavelengths and jam the rags with your message of hard-done-by infallibility, the like of which makes Alan Partridge’s famous dictum of ‘needless to say I had the last laugh’ seem like the motto of the humble of serfs!
With these five easy steps you’ll be guaranteed to go from hero to zero fans in less time than it takes to say ‘at least give the proceeds to charity, you champagne socialist sham!’
So order your copy of TASSGTPAOYL now and watch all those hitherto well-wishers turn on you in their droves! After all, what’s the alternative – maintaining a classy dignified silence and thereby ensuring your ever-lasting place in the hearts and minds of millions? Well, it just doesn’t bare thinking about, does it?