Daniel Chapman | Writing etc


The Diary Of Gary McSheffrey: Part One

“Gary McSheffrey admits he expected an offer from Leeds after seeing out the last five months of his contract on loan at Elland Road,” reported the Coventry Telegraph in the run up to our game at Ricoh Arena. “‘They had first dabs on me to stay there,’ said McSheffrey. ‘Michael Doyle played 55 games for them last year and I think the first two signing they should have made in the summer were me and Doyler.

‘But Simon Grayson and his staff didn’t want me – it’s as simple as that. I haven’t spoken to him since I left, which I find a bit disappointing on a man to man basis. You expect better man-management really, a bit more respect.’”

TSB had hoped to speak to Gary McSheffrey about the important points he raises in this interview in the days after our 3-2 win over his new team, but he didn’t seem up for it. Luckily, a contact of ours at Coventry who may or not have been Noel Whelan forwarded the following extracts from McSheffrey’s diary, so we could get an insight into the man behind the headlines.


Lost to Leeds today which was a big disappointment. I was the best player on the pitch though, and Doyler did well sitting on the bench. Things really picked up after the game though: down to Ritzy’s for a few pina-colodas, and I ended up going home with this right looker called Trudy. Me and Doyler didn’t leave til after breakfast!


Just been playing back the recording of my usual Sunday phone call with Aidy Boothroyd, so that Doyler can transcribe it for me:

Me: Good morning boss. Aidy: Gary, well played yesterday. Bye. Me: Wait! – Thanks boss, it’s lovely of you to phone and tell me so. Aidy: Right. So if there’s nothing else I’ll say goodbye. Me: What, is that it? Aidy: For crying out loud Gary, what more do you want? Me: Well, what part of my performance did you like best? Aidy: Well, to be honest Gary you were shi – oh, er, that cross you put in. Me: Cross? Aidy: Yeah, that cross. Second half, only went into the third row instead of the upper tier. Listen Gary, I’ve things to do. Don’t be late for training tomorrow. Me: But boss, you haven’t said anything about – Aidy: click Me: – about Doyler.


Just got off the phone to the council. I’m not happy. I said hello to a binman this morning and never got so much as a text message from him to see how I was doing later. Terrible man-management on his part, so I went and kicked the neighbour’s wheelie bins over.


Did some community work today. It’s always nice to get into the local schools and remember how privileged the local children are to meet me. I made sure their teacher knew what would happen if I didn’t get thankyou letters from each and every child in the class. Fair’s fair though – it takes Doyler a long time to grade them all.


That Trudy bird from Saturday still hasn’t phoned, so me and Doyler went round. She didn’t seem to be in so Doyler broke a window, and we watched telly and had a couple of beers. For some reason, she seemed a bit surprised to see me when she came home.

Trudy: What do you think you’re doing? Me: Well, you didn’t phone, so I came round. Trudy: What? Me: I can’t say I wasn’t disappointed at first – I mean, they’re called ‘courtesy calls’ for a reason. But then I thought, no, give her the benefit of the doubt. So here I am. Trudy: What do you mean, here you are? Me: I’m moving in. Trudy: What? Me: Well, after my performance here on Saturday night I assumed you’d be so impressed that you wouldn’t be able to live without me. And Doyler paid £25 for that taxi, so he’s here too. Trudy: Your performance? Your performance was pathetic! Me: That’s a lie! You just don’t know my best position! Trudy: And as for your short-arse mate – look, why did you bring him along on Saturday? I mean it was nice of him to put those shelves up and repaint the kitchen while we were upstairs, but it’s a bit bloody weird… Me: Right, that’s it. You can insult me, but you don’t insult Doyler. We can go where we’re appreciated, thank you very much. Come on Doyler, we can get round your mum’s for six and she might make us some tea.


Just got off the phone with Doyler’s mum. She thanked me for going round yesterday and drinking all her tea and eating all her biscuits, because otherwise she wouldn’t have had a reason to go to the shops today. She’s a lovely woman is Ma Doyler, she always remembers the follow-up call.


From The Square Ball magazine 2010/11 issue four.