Lou looked at the screen hard and then he clicked on the mouse and he paused it. He sighed. It’s one thang to believe in your players, but it would be nice if they helped him some. Or helped theyselves, rather. He had to believe in em cause they all he got. Ain’t nobody else comin for another two years at least. I guess he had ol’ Sander and his boys to thank for that. Four matches it been. Four matches up against em ropes. They got knocked on they butt in the first two and then the last match ref damn near counted to ten. He wasn’t sure if they’d of recovered from another loss. Ain’t knowed any other coach ever recover from three league losses in a row. Not at this club that’s for damn sure.
He looked out the window. Truthfully, international break couldna come at a better time. Take a moment and hit that ol reset button. Mentally speakin, that is. Of course he ain’t have a reset button hisself. Ain’t got no off switch neither for that matter. Just the other day his wife called him stubborn as a mule, and she’s usually right. She was smarter than him anyways. He never was afraid to admit as much. Not that she’d know what to do about his right back situation. Danny ran more with his mouth than his legs. The other two he’d look at em play and he ain’t know what to think. I mean, what on God’s brown earth was Anthony thinkin when he brought him Douglas. He ain’t never even heard of the boy and on most days he wished he still ain’t. He backed the move when they asked him of course. Ain’t like they gave him much of a choice. Besides, a man ain’t nuttin without his loyalty. But loyalty don’t mean he gonna play Martin. He knew the boy when he was still runnin round the Mini and he liked him but ain’t no room for feelings in this here game. Now he wanna go try his luck someplace else. Heck, it’s a free country last time I checked.
He always knowed there’d be times like this when he took the job. Just never spec those times to arrive so soon, I suppose. One minute you on top of the world and the next the world’s on top of you. Leo started out on fire, too. Ain’t never seen a boy play ball like that. Some tryna say Ronald’s better, but he just ain’t man enough. A grown hombre don’t go round throwin fits whenever he feel like it, but I ain’t sayin nuttin everbody else ain’t said already. Besides, Lou had his own to worry bout. Leo ain’t put no ball in the net for three games now and that ain’t happened for a long time, especially takin into account he ain’t gave no assists either. Then again, these’re thangs fans worry bout more ‘n a coach. Sure, the Flea ain’t as good as he was a coupla years ago but nobody ever was and maybe nobody never will be. He still pretty darn good.
He drummed on his desk with the tips of his fingers. Silver Junior doin good, too. Better’n a lot of folks thought he would. Of course people round these here parts don’t know much and I know that much. Ever time Lou looked at Junior he felt old. Not tired, mind you, just plain old. When he was a child only sailors had tattoos on they arms and maybe on they back. These days kids walk round with tattoos on they necks like they ready to take on a seamonster. You can hardly see they skin. They wearin more gold than the queen of England, too. Blang blang, they call it. His grandpa had a watch. Nuttin fancy or nuttin just a watch. Wasn’t no gold or silver. You saw a boy wear diamond earrings in those days, well nowadays you can’t even say out loud what you thought of boys like that. Thangs done changed and then some. And that rap music they listen to, always yappin bout smackin some bitches. He just didn’t understand em and he ain’t sure he wanted to either. Still, he liked the kid more than he cared to admit. He just ain’t wanna show it, is all. Ain’t nuttin good can come from someone that young with the world at they feet. Just look at Jerry. That boy done had too much and too young and now he ripe for some pine, if he’s lucky that is. Hale, the other day he on his cell phone stead of watchin the game so he told him you wanna play fuckin Candy Crush you can kindly do so from the stands and that’s where he sent him. Not that he had any thang to say to no reporter bout that. Already they fishin for a story and those press boys’d be on him like a pack of bloodhounds on a sore wound if he slipped one word too many. Lou let out another sigh. Cell phones and pop stars. In his days a man was happy if his lady had all her teeth. No guarantee she’d still have ‘em after a coupla years of marriage but that’s a whole other story right there.
He paused the screen again. Up by one goal in injury time and two of his forwards ain’t track back for the last play of the game. He looked at it but he didn’t believe it. They just standin there like it ain’t no thang. Not even his new striker, and Lou liked him. They shared more than just a first name. Boy had scrap to him. A born winner, just like his own self. Only winning two leagues outta eight seasons don’t change a thang. It’s all in people’s mind anyhow and heck, ain’t nobody countin. Everbody know you either play hard or you don’t play at all. Why the hale they strollin? They sure make it harder than they need to. Ain’t easy to set your best on the bench and even less so when you losin. Used to be a boy don’t play he work harder. Now his agent’s on the phone faster’n you can say Ee Pee El and y’all know these numb nuts will sell em for a dime on the dollar, too. There just ain’t no percentages in that game.
He wondered what happened to his midfield. That’s a problem right there. Xavier’s an old dog. He can’t rely on him two games ever week and Andy ain’t exactly the ghost of a coupla years back neither. You gotta face up to that. He thought that if they can’t control the midfield they might’s well bypass the midfield and that’s why they brought in Evan for what looked like a bargain and he knowed Ralphy from last year and he liked his attitude and his directness. Now both started out well enough but the boy Evan lacked confidence right now and neither one of em’s brangin what he hoped for. Not yet anyhow. When he played em together they couldna keep the ball not even for two touches and you know how folks are sensitive bout they possession round these parts. People’s sure fast to turn on they team but hale, it’s easy lookin from the outside in. He had some players that’re too old ‘n others that’re too young and maybe a bunch that’re really good but no longer great or maybe not great yet. The sum can be greater than its parts, they say, and he believed it to be true. That don’t make the opposite false neither. He knew he had the tools but was wonderin bout the parts and how they fit. It was gettin dark outside but Lou would stay in the office until late again. He looked back up at the tee vee screen.
And he sighed.