Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

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Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby Forever Blue » Tue May 19, 2020 11:08 am

The day Kevin McNaughton caught Vincent Tan leaving pound coins around the Cardiff City pitch and being made to eat rams' testicles

Kevin McNaughton: When it came to football nous, though, McNaughton concedes Tan's knowledge was a little sketchy, at best.

"I've seen a lot of crazy chairmen in my time," he said. "Sam Hammam, when I first came down, I put my hand out to shake his hand and he just put me in a bear lock! He just gave us a double high five.

"Apparently I didn't properly read my contract, because he would make you eat rams' testicles in the wee small print.

"You had to eat them if you wanted to play!

"The spirit and character of Sam was just loved by the players."






By Glen Williams


Tuesday 19th May 2020



The former Bluebirds fan favourite has opened up on the weird and wonderful things he experienced while at Cardiff City


Kevin McNaughton's time at Cardiff City Football Club spanned one of the most successful and eccentric times of the club's history.

When he moved from Aberdeen in 2006, then manager Dave Jones made it clear to him that, while the training facilities and Ninian Park were modest, the vision of what lay ahead was special.

Of course, it all came to fruition. A move to a new stadium, a League Cup final, an FA Cup final and a fleeting visit to the Premier League coincided with the Scot's stay in South Wales. But it was the takeover of Malaysian businessman Vincent Tan which was causing a stir off the pitch.

There were murmurs that Tan was going to turn the kit colour red, but firstly opted against it.

However, following the play-off final defeat against Blackpool in May 2010, McNaughton believes that cemented in the owner's head that the strip needed to change, in-keeping with the bizarre notion that blue is unlucky and red, in Malaysia, would bring fortune.

And McNaughton, who played almost 300 games for the club between 2006 and 2015 has detailed the extent of Tan's eccentricities, including the day he caught him laying pound coins around he outside of the Cardiff City Stadium pitch for good luck.

"He was a really superstitious person," McNaughton told the Northern Goal podcast. "Blue is an unlucky colour in Malaysia or something like that, I've heard so many stories.

"And we're obviously called the Bluebirds... in Malaysia they are not classed as very lucky either!

"He was a very superstitious guy. I actually caught him putting money around the pitch one day. He used to leave money around the pitch, little clumps of pound coins.

"He said something like if you place money around the park then you'll get money back! Something like that.

"All this sort of stuff was going through his head. So a strip change was probably the norm in terms of what he was up to!"

Even though McNaughton recognises some supporters might never forgive Tan for changing the strip, even though the club are now rightfully back in blue, the ex-Scotland international recognises the mountain of good work the owner did.
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Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

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Re: Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby Forever Blue » Tue May 19, 2020 11:10 am

Having written off millions in debt, McNaughton believes the club, who are still heavily reliant on his financial backing, would not have achieved what is has in the last decade without Tan's deep pockets.

When it came to football nous, though, McNaughton concedes Tan's knowledge was a little sketchy, at best.





Kevin McNaughton:


"Under [Ole Gunnar] Solskjaer, he wasn't happy and made his thoughts known," McNaughton said of Tan. "I don't think Ole was too keen on being told stuff from the top and that's why he ended up leaving.

"He is a character, I've never seen him without an entourage of about 20 people.

"He came in and talked to the boys a couple of times and you can tell he doesn't really know a lot about football.

"He came in one time and I can't even repeat some of the stuff he said. It was like... I think my missus could have come in and spoke about football a bit better than him at the time and she doesn't have a Scooby-Doo!

"It's just one of those things you have to put up with."

The bizarre Cardiff City hierarchy didn't just begin with Tan, however, McNaughton recalls.

Indeed, the former right-back remembers when he first moved to the Welsh capital and what then chairman Sam Hammam had etched into his contract. A gentle reminder to always read the small print.

"I've seen a lot of crazy chairmen in my time," he said. "Sam Hammam, when I first came down, I put my hand out to shake his hand and he just put me in a bear lock! He just gave us a double high five.

"Apparently I didn't properly read my contract, because he would make you eat rams' testicles in the wee small print.

"You had to eat them if you wanted to play!

"The spirit and character of Sam was just loved by the players."


"He just used to storm in at half-times and go mental, Sam Hammam.

"He wasn't there for long, only about eight months and then Peter Ridsdale came in. He wasn't much better. Crazy. I've seen a few characters."
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Re: Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby Forever Blue » Tue May 19, 2020 11:14 am

On the pitch, however, a host of superstars walked through the door during his time there.

He reeled off a list of names including Peter Whittingham, Jay Bothroyd, Michael Chopra, Robbie Fowler and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, but one player stands out about them all.




Kevin McNaughton:


"Aaron Ramsey was different class," he said. "I remember speaking to Gavin Rae about him after a training session and saying: 'He's got a real chance of being a top-class player.'

"Two-footed, 16, coming in the young vs old games and running the show, as good as anyone on the training park.

"He played a handful of games for us in the first team at 16, 17 and at the end of the season Arsenal came in with a £6m bid and signed him, the rest is history."

At the latter end of his time at the club, of course, McNaughton played under Solskjaer, the now Manchester United manager.

McNaughton admits, back then, he never thought Solskjaer would progress to the dizzying heights of managing the Old Trafford club, having found some of his managerial idiosyncrasies rather odd.

McNaughton says Solskjaer would try to borrow techniques from Sir Alex Ferguson, such as telling players they were playing against a team three weeks down the line and would be dropped for the intervening two matches.


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer during his time as manager of Cardiff City
But as the Bluebirds legend points out, City's modus operandi at that time was survival, they needed their best team out every game if they were to stay in the Premier League.

All told, the way Solskjaer went about his business simply didn't sit well with McNaughton.

"The manner in which he used to tell you, I just found it really uncomfortable," he said of Solskjaer's methods.

"I remember I was getting my pre-match meal, chicken and beans, just scooping it up on to my plate.

"I'd played the last three games and he just came up to me and said: 'Kevin, you're not in the squad today.'

"It was just so bizarre.

"He was a really nice guy, his coaching was fine, I just found him a little bit difficult and awkward in terms of things like that."

It is fair to say that very few will have seen Cardiff's recent history through a more eye-opening lens than 'Super' Kev McNaughton, that's for sure.
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Re: Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby Nuclearblue » Tue May 19, 2020 6:03 pm

Didn’t the Malaysian National team play in blue ? Just saying like p
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Re: Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby Forever Blue » Wed May 20, 2020 10:45 am

Nuclearblue wrote:Didn’t the Malaysian National team play in blue ? Just saying like p


Nukes they did :lol: :bluescarf:
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Re: Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby jimmy_rat » Wed May 20, 2020 11:20 pm

Forever Blue wrote:
Nuclearblue wrote:Didn’t the Malaysian National team play in blue ? Just saying like p


Nukes they did :lol: :bluescarf:


Yes. But how many world cups have they won? :lol:
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Re: Kevin McNaughton caught: Vincent Tan / Sam Hammam

Postby nubbsy » Thu May 21, 2020 12:06 am

Funny how someone so rich can be a such a crack pot.

There's still faith for some of us yet I guess!
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