Sam Allardyce’s retirement from football management has abruptly ended following an undercover sting operation where he was apparently filmed accepting a bag of Werther’s Original in exchange for information regarding player contracts in the West Sussex Over 60s Mixed Lawn Bowls Association.
Like many of his football manager jobs, Allardyce’s retirement had begun with a honeymoon period, albeit of only 24 hours, when he cleared out the loft, put some new bedding plants round the pond, booked a cruise and joined the local bowls team.
The bowls team appointment, whilst initially controversial with his adoption of the ‘long bowl’ game, reaped instant rewards when he saved Littlehampton Over 60s from almost certain relegation, with new signing Jermain Defoe coming off the bench to score the winning shot.
However, again like many of his football manager jobs, Allardyce was then plunged into controversy when a reporter from the Worthing Gazette secretly filmed him accepting a bag of Werther’s Original in exchange for information about contravening rules about third party ownership of players, in particular of 78-year-old captain Kitty Flowers, who was allegedly sold to local rivals Bognor Regis via a company registered in Ecuador.
Allardyce complained of entrapment, but was forced to resign, effectively ending his retirement from football management.
When asked about his next move, he replied, “I hear there’s a vacancy back at Sunderland”.