Sorry yer goin' McBerti ... naw, not really

KEITH BRADFORD -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 7:36 AM ET

Auf wiedersehen, Berti McVogts.

Scotland loves you - for finally quitting.

And now that you're gone, after the longest of goodbyes, there's just one thing we need to know.

Was it really the Sun vot done it, as the Scottish Sun suggested, or can all the credit be claimed by the "gob yobs?"

"I must say that the major factor in this decision has been the disgraceful abuse that I have suffered, especially of late," said Vogts after resigning as Scotland coach Monday following a tumultuous two-and-a-half year tenure.

DEGENERATED

"It has degenerated into a physical nature, especially on recent occasions where I have been spat upon.

''This is not acceptable behaviour in a civilized society."

McBerti, as he's also known, obviously expected more of the Tartan Army after such stellar results as a 2-2 draw with the Faroe Islands and a 4-0 loss to Wales.

But expecting civility was maybe a wee bit over-optimistic. After all, we're talking about a German running a Scottish team - and appearing, at least to the fans, to be doing it pretty badly.

He didn't deserve to be spat at, but he stayed in the job far too long and fans' emotions began to boil over.

The tabloid press didn't help either, a fact McBerti himself acknowledged.

"What these actions have proved has been the unacceptable power of the tabloid press to influence its readership," said McBerti.

"The opinions expressed mostly by journalists with little knowledge of the game certainly had a great effect on some of the fans."

The Scottish Sun was so delighted at McBerti's resignation that it credited its campaign to get rid of the "bungling" German coach as one of the reasons he quit.

It also ran five McBerti jokes to celebrate his departure, including: "Berti was caught speeding before a game - and told police he'd do anything for three points."

Oh dear.

"We hoped it was all over, it is now," was the Daily Mail's view of the debacle.

And a host of other commentators lined up to condemn McBerti's "whining rant" about why he left.

Which all leaves you feeling a wee bit sorry for the guy.

There's no doubt he tried, or that he failed. But he also had the least talented Scottish squad in probably a decade.

FOREIGN COACH

And I don't think being a "foreign" coach - as Swede Sven Goran Eriksson has found to his cost in England - helped his cause.

The only positive to come out of it all is that whoever follows in McBerti's footsteps won't be expected to perform miracles.

There's an increasing acknowledgement that making a silk purse out of a sow's ear is almost impossible at international level.

Even if the new coach is a natural born McScot.

- - -

After throwing their toys out of the pram following a controversial loss to Manchester United, Arsenal's players didn't have to wait long to get a more supportive referee.

Trailing 2-1 to lowly Southampton in the dying moments of Saturday's game, they were told the refs would allow an extra three minutes of injury time.

Call me a bitter Saints fan, but I wasn't surprised to see Arsenal get the equalizer - in the fourth minute of added time.

Mysteriously, there were no reports of Southampton players flying into a rage and hurling soup at the opposing coach.


Videos

Photos