We start in 2010, when a Malaysian businessman named Vince Tan joined the Cardiff city board. A year later, the club appointed Malky Mackay as manager.
At the end of the season in 2012, Tan’s plans for the club leaked out. He wanted to change the club colors from blue to red, and change the club crest from a bluebird to a dragon. The reason being that red and dragons are lucky in Malaysia. Local fans threw quite a hissy fit, understandably.
In April of 2013, under mackay, the club got promoted to the premier league. The first season doesn’t go as smoothly as planned. In October, Tan suspended recruitment chief Iain Moody. Tan said Moody and Mackay spent 50 million pounds, when the budget was 35 million. In one extreme example, Andreas Cornelius, then aged 20, cost $13 million. He played just 113 minutes of Premier League soccer before being sold back to FC Copenhagen at a steep loss. Iain Moody lost his job at cardiff at this point.
On Dec. 27, 2013, Malky Mackay swiftly followed moody out the door. Merry Christmas, Malky! The English press turned on tan, making him out as a pantomime villain with his ridiculously high pants and silly gloves and Bond-villain mustache. Two months later, Tan swore revenge. “He played the media well,” Tan said. “In the eyes of some fans he is the hero, I am the villain. When the truth comes out, this will be revered. I assure you.” Cardiff launched an investigtion into the summer transfers. They didn’t find anything underhanded about the transfers. What they found was something else entirely, which they kept quiet about … until now.
That brings us to this week, when Crystal Palace, with Iain Moody now in charge of football affairs, went about hiring Malkay as manager. Cardiff submitted a dossier about Mackay’s conduct to the English Football Association, which quickly scuttled that move. It turned out that some dubious text messages had been sent between Moody and Mackay
Here’s a sample of the texts Mackay allegedly sent while at Cardiff. On the signing of Korean striker Kim Bo-Kyung, “There’s enough dogs in Cardiff for us all to go around.” And on an official from another unnamed club: “He’s a snake, a gay snake. Not to be trusted.” We’ve never even thought about it before, but how do snakes have sex? Something to ponder.
Anyway, all of this is pretty racist. We can all agree on that, right? Well, almost everyone can. The League Managers Association – a kind of trade union for coaches – released a statement that was supposed to be an apology, but that boiled down to “it was just friendly banter.” They cited the stress of the job and using racist texts to blow off steam. Quick note: whenever you’re stressed out at work, try not to paste on a tiny Hitler mustache and racially abuse co-workers. It won’t make you feel better.
The next day, the LMA had to print an apology for the earlier apology. It read: “The LMA apologizes for some of its wording, in its release yesterday, which was inappropriate and has been perceived to trivialize matters of a racist, sexist or homophobic nature.”
Cardiff City responded by releasing a statement that spit hot fire. At the end it called for the immediate resignation of LMA chief executive Richard Bevan.
So there you have it. A heart-warming tale of one man’s alleged racism ruining his career. But wait, the story isn’t over until the fat lady sings. Or, in this case, until Harry Redknapp gives his opinion while hanging out a car window.
Here’s what the QPR manager had to say about Mackay: “He’s not murdered anyone, he’s not a rapist or a pedophile. He’s made a big mistake. It shouldn’t finish his life or his football career.” When your best defense is, “Well, at least he didn’t murder or rape a small child,” then you might not enjoy the verdict that’s coming.