Nigel Pearson has endured a rollercoaster campaign as Leicester boss, but things are looking up after his side’s exploits earned him April’s Manager of the Month award.
T.S Eliot famously described it as the cruellest on the calendar, but the Foxes secured four wins from a possible five across its 30 days to give themselves every chance of cheating what had seemed certain doom before their recent run began.
Several brusque exchanges with reporters and the odd animal-themed outburst have earned him a reputation as a brusque and combative interviewee this term.
However, in accepting the April accolade at a press conference prior to his side hosting Southampton, Pearson was roundly and charitably praised for his humility.
This is the same manager who has savaged the Daily Star’s Ian Baker for having the temerity to ask precisely what criticism the Leicester manager had been referring to in his previous point during the presser that followed the 3-1 defeat to Chelsea.
Such an abrupt change of tack seemed suspicious to the newshounds at news.bwin.com, who, after a little digging around, came into possession of the following.
The speech that was Pearson originally planned to make before he was persuaded otherwise…
Barclays Premier League Manager of the month for April? Can I ask where you’ve been for the last eight months?
Maybe you were on a gap year building igloos for the Inuits in the Arctic Circle? I doubt you’re on ostrich…at least they CHOOSE to bury their heads in the sand.
This football club has been unlucky not to claim points in every single league game we’ve played this season. Do you now who you’re talking to? Well then… Nigel Pearson you jesters!
Where were you in August, when we drew with Arsenal and Everton? Or January…? Newcastle and Aston Villa weren’t smiling then, were they…? Well?
The fact that you only choose to recognise my managerial gifts now we’ve won more than two successive games suggests to me that you are either very, very silly or absolutely stupid, or know nothing about football at the highest level whatsoever…
(Note to self: sign off by roundhousing the front row of journalists, cameras and microphones and exit stage right).
Foxes fans will be hoping Pearson’s turn for the tractable is not indicative of softening of his troops’ recent spirit with Everton on the horizon.
Leicester are 8/5 to take maximum points of the Saints, who are a shade longer at 33/20 for victory, with the draw a 9/4 wager.