Alan Grenn

Alan Green, BBC Radio Five ~ ‘606’

Alan Green, what can one say about him that is positive? Not much.
Last night on his BBC Radio Five phone in show ‘606’ a listener called in to criticise Green’s style of commentary and his negativity towards the national side. Green didn’t allow the caller much time on air before cutting him off with words to the effect of, ‘I’m not having any personal abuse against me’. Yet Green is not slow in coming forward to abuse whoever he likes in the game of football (soccer).

Last night during the game between England and Ukraine he didn’t hold back on abusing the linesman behind the goal for not giving a decision. He was also bordering on being obnoxious when he took up his familiar refrain of having a go at the crowd for their penchant of starting a ‘Mexican Wave’. Green forgets that, unlike himself, the crowd have paid for their tickets. As paying customers they are entitled to do anything they want. When was the last time Alan Green paid to see a match?

All right,  so Green does not like people enjoying themselves but the BBC audience is probably getting tired of Green going into a Lady Macbeth tantrum. It was fine the first time we heard it but now it is getting tiresome. It is a monologue he has been spitting out for well over a year.

Why do I listen? Well, the other commentators who work for the channel do a very good job.

Green doesn’t seem to understand the game or have any knowledge of what it is like to play in a game (at any level). If he had spent a few years when he was younger and played in a Sunday League side he would have a different view about what is going through a player’s mind. Perhaps he did play football as a teenager and was a member of a team? If so, I suspect that he didn’t get picked to play for the team too often.

Whist he was throwing the caller off ‘606’ Green should have paused for a moment and reflected upon the notion that the caller is helping to pay for his salary. After all, the caller was probably a license payer.

It is time the BBC considered asking Green to call it a day. I don’t think it helps that ‘606’ is produced by an independent company and not the BBC. Maybe the producers are afraid of criticising Green? When I worked in current affairs at the BBC there was a time when many thought Sir Robin Day was becoming too arrogant with his guests rather than concentrating on being a good interviewer. I recall a BBC producer saying to me that it would take a brave person to fire Sir Robin Day. I think we have reached a situation where producers in BBC Radio Sport think Green is too big to fire.

At the very least, Green needs to be taken aside by a senior BBC producer and reminded about his responsibilities as a presenter. He needs to show his audience respect, even if he continues to abuse certain managers and players.