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|John Fashanu Refuses To Apologise For Being A Bully During His Days As A Player by zizazizu: 8:00am On Dec 07, 2014|
When renowned hard-man Vinnie Jones admits to being taken aback at the levels of violence that Wimbledon team-mate John Fashanu was capable of when they were part of the club’s notorious Crazy Gang in the 1980s, you are not surprised to hear the powerful striker and former host of hit TV show Gladiators was no bleeding heart liberal.
Nevertheless, it is shocking — and doubtlessly refreshing to some — to hear the man once dubbed ‘Fash the Bash’ not only defending his behaviour more than 25 years ago, but also regretting that modern football and society in general has gone soft in a way that prevents people like him ‘rising from the gutter into fame and fortune’, as he puts it.
Fashanu, 52, last week travelled from Nigeria where he is a successful businessman, to London for the premiere of a TV documentary on The Crazy Gang, to be screened on BT Sport on Boxing Day.
It charts the rise of Wimbledon from a non-League club to winning the FA Cup in 1988. Some of the stories are hair-raising. Jones, whose tough-guy reputation saw him forge a Hollywood career, described one dressing-room fight: ‘Fash literally lifted him up, swung him around and smashed him down on the floor and his calf just obliterated.’
Fashanu revels in ruling by fear and admitted: ‘There were times when we were 200 per cent physical. We believed we were warlords because at three o’clock on a Saturday, it was war.’
Former Wimbledon owner Sam Hammam and ex-manager Dave Bassett have condemned the film for focusing on the violence rather than the club’s amazing rise from the Southern League to playing the likes Manchester United and Liverpool.
Fashanu says it is wrong to suggest that Wimbledon were only about bullying but in an exclusive interview with the Mail on Sunday, he refused to apologise for the way he behaved — and for maintaining some strong views that, in today’s society, are very controversial.
Referring to himself in the third person, he describes life at a club he joined from Millwall in 1986.
‘Fash was a physical bastard and you would either have to adapt or dissolve as a person,’ he declares. ‘The players ran the club and if you were a wise manager, you would work with us, not against us.’
Discipline was enforced by kangaroo courts, chaired by Jones and Fashanu, ruling on anything from timekeeping to dress code.
‘The Wimbledon players didn’t have money at that stage, we couldn’t fine you, so the best we could do is beat the crap out of you.
‘That is how we got our success. We are not here to apologise, we are here to tell you how it worked.
‘Once, one of our lads wouldn’t pay a fine, Vinnie and Wisey (Dennis Wise) went to get him, I locked the door of the changing-room and when the door is locked, it is only me, him and God who knows what’s happened. But I assure you, you come out looking different than when you went in.
‘People will now go, “Well, that was too much intimidation”. I’m sorry, in the world we were living in then, it was part of the qualities of leadership, intimidation.’
Pictures below show Fashanu in action and the last one of Gary Mabutt (a Tottenham Defender) whose skull he fractured
|Re: John Fashanu Refuses To Apologise For Being A Bully During His Days As A Player by echobee(f): 8:04am On Dec 07, 2014|
Chisosssssssss . See beating of d highest order
|Re: John Fashanu Refuses To Apologise For Being A Bully During His Days As A Player by gunuvi(m): 9:07am On Dec 07, 2014|
Omo, fash would have been far more success full as a boxer.
|Re: John Fashanu Refuses To Apologise For Being A Bully During His Days As A Player by veave(f): 1:22pm On Dec 07, 2014|
E good for dem.... how i wish it was still allowed. so that wen you use a racist comment on any of our boys, they can use thier akpu hand on you...
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