Thursday, January 17, 2008

How to Make Enemies and Irritate People

You know, for those of us on the outside, this whole Liverpool meltdown thing has been fascinating. It's got billionaires screwing things up royally, only to put themselves in a position to make 9 figures US in the space of a year. It's had the media going after the coaching style of Rafa. It's had the same media espousing xenophobic views on the ownership situation. I can only imagine how bad it is for those who follow the club. I think it might be like my love for this team, only without all of the expectations taken into this season.

Now it may all be evaporating away for the ownership duo who failed to understand that the laws in England are not the same as the ones in America. It seems that Tom Hicks decided to talk to Jurgen Klinsmann about a potential job opening as the Liverpool manager. While such behind doors talks are de rigeur in American business, in Britain, this is a legal no-no. Rafa can now claim something called 'constructive dismissal' which means that, since a replacement was being interviewed, he was basically fired already. Since he was "fired", he can sue for the remainder of his contract, provided he steps down from the position first.

It really is a no win situation for Liverpool fans. Either you get to keep Rafa (no thanks), or you lose him, pay him for quitting, and have to enter the coaching market at a bad time (I hear Graeme Souness remains available).

Of course, it would never have been a problem if Hicks had kept his mouth shut, but he didn't. He blabbed to the press, on the day Klinsmann was pre-hired at Bayern, that such talks had taken place. Now Hicks' partner is pissed. George Gillett is not mad about the meeting itself, as he was present, but instead at the audacity and stupidity in revealing that the talks were held at all. He is especially angered at the timing, coming as it does right when they are in a crunch to roll over loans used to buy the club. Should they not be able to finalize funding, the two will probably be forced to sell to those Dubai fellas and settle for a purported $300 million payday.

Liverpool fans contemplating another headline on UF

At least there's no way Liverpool loses in the 4th Round of the FA Cup, is there?

1 comment:

The Fan's Attic said...

If that's all we're talking about as far as "constructive dismissal" then this is not a big deal. If you have a contract for a set term and the contract is terminated prior to the agreed upon date, then yes you would have a claim for damages. Same as in the US. Remember Larry Brown for the Knicks? The reason he got so much money is because he signed a contract for X years but was terminated after 1.5 years or so.

I really don't think this is a no-no. LFC would have had to pay Benitez if he were fired anyway. All this does, is allow Benitez to resign and then argue that he was constructively dismissed. He doesn't appear to be set on resigning so he will get his money once he is fired.