On the 8th January 2010, Simon McMenemy (Simcm7) tweeted: ‘Feels totally disrespected. No call, text, nothing. Been told my a friend who watched it on TV, this is not how to treat people.’
This was Simon McMenemy’s reaction, as he became the first international football manager to be fired on Twitter.
Simon McMenemy should have been celebrating his other first, becoming the youngest international manager in the world and becoming an overnight hero in the Philippines after inspiring the country to its greatest-ever success at a major tournament. Yet instead he picked up a more unwelcome first. He became the first international boss to discover his sacking on Twitter before having it confirmed by a friend on Facebook.
McMenemy’s rise to fame was sudden. He worked as Albion’s football and health development officer and last season he was assistant manager at Worthing, before he successfully applied for the manager of the Philippines.
McMenemy took the Philippines reached the semi-finals of the Suzuki Cup in South East Asia, the national side’s best ever performance.
“After four months I had been the most successful Philippines coach of all-time. Three wins, five draws and three losses were not too bad.”
But this was not enough and he still lost his job as new German financiers of the club demanded the right to choose their own manager.
I talked to Simon for BBC Sussex to get his reaction on the story. He told me that by using this form of media, it was so much more impersonal than ringing him or contacting him directly.
This highlights the worst aspects of UGC when a leaked story can ruined someone’s professional credibility as well as their career. The speed of which the leak from Twitter moved to Facebook was rapid enough that the chairman of the Philippines had to appear directly on national television to confirm the rumours, rather than alerting McMenemy first.
He said: “It’s a sore one to take as it got leaked on Twitter.”
On 3rd February he Tweeted: ‘football rules my life. Has cost me jobs, relationships, my health (broke my leg in a tackle 2 years ago) still in love with it’
With his previous career success, in a matter of mere months of rising from non-league football to an international manager, it seems that he shouldn’t be short of future job offers!
By Vanessa Holland