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Rich Energy Haas F1 Team Livery Unveil

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Coventry City: A warning from the (recent) past

Could we really pass up a chance to feature this man again? It’ll probably wind some of you up, but we have a civic duty to all Sky Blues fans out there: run...

Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

“Ridiculous. Spurious fiction which is nothing other than risible nonsense” is something you might expect to hear come from the mouth, keyboard or backside of William John Storey. It’s a stock response to anybody who provides a riposte to his grandiose claims of intent to buy a football club. Followed of course by threats of legal action that do not materialise. Mainly because his legal counsel is probably Lionel Hutz.

Of course, the only legal experience Storey has, is as a defendant.

If Coventry City fans haven’t heard of this man, they should come and have a word with me, and thousands of other Sunderland supporters. So, if you’re a fan of the Sky Blues, welcome. If you can bring yourselves to put your flares and bottles down, I’ve got something you might want to hear - and some pre-reading: this and this.

Rich Energy Haas F1 Team Livery Unveil Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

As you can see, we’ve been up and down the mountain on this one.

In many ways William Storey is box office. You just can’t stop looking at this utterly curious, bizarre man, and it’s safe to say there is no one quite like him.

Put simply, he lives in a fairy tale, cloud cuckoo land. It’s one inhabited by Snow White, seven dwarfs, a homebrew energy drink, and a man so economical with reality you’d think he’d written a mini-budget.

Yet this man isn’t a Tory minister, he’s a doughnut with a beard inhabited by a family of birds. Of course Snow White was a fairytale penned by the Brothers Grimm, and yet have no doubt, if Storey was to get his hands on your football club, things may turn out to be very... Grimm indeed.

Just ask Haas F1 racing team, with who he had some involvement a few years back. It all ended rather embarrassingly for them and they don’t want to talk about it anymore.

Well, this latest tale comes straight from the bungled attempt at a backdoor power grab playbook which Storey has perfected over the last few years.

We started off on acquiring Coventry City in July. I brought together £9m worth of annual sponsorship contracts, which is unheard of in the Championship, with five major corporations and I secured arrangements for tens of millions of pounds worth of players to come in in January.

Did you, William? Did you?

The outlining of plans, the claims of investment, backing and influential figures; the players lined up and the promise of jam tomorrow; followed swiftly by the claims of a breach of exclusivity, toys being thrown out the pram and threats of legal action to enforce it. Ah, it’s so William. “I would like to confirm I have instructed my lawyers...” blah blah, etc etc whatever - utter total complete nonsense.

It would of course help if the media in Coventry did a little reading around the subject. As they immediately jumped on the notion that there might be a bona fide element to his designs. I’ve got to tell you right now, there really, really isn’t.

Amusingly, the headlines attached to the man have followed a particular pattern. Initially they may have believed his credentials, whereas now anything related to his intentions are accompanied by quotation marks. William Storey “bid”; Storey’s “£30m” “plan” for “world domination” and “scratchy beards for all”.

F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images

Sisu of course suspect Storey to be so chock-full of shite he could fill every single Tupperware box Gillian McKeith has ever owned, saying his claims they breached exclusivity are “untrue” and “unhelpful”. And that, my friends, is where the whole sorry saga should begin and end.

There is one way to deal with Storey and his tales. It’s to laugh. Just consider him like that thing you stand on in the street that you just won't... come... off... your... foot. Like chewing gum. Or a cellophane wrapper. Or shit.

Treat him as what he is: a joke. A non-threatening bogeyman (unless he actually gets his hands on your club). I kind of think he’s a bit like that bloke who runs around posh Cotswolds towns dressed in a gimp suit scaring the life out of residents when it’s dark. But don’t worry, no one has been hurt yet, he just gave you a bit of a fright.

So I say this - just ignore the man. He’s just the world’s worst shopping centre Santa you’ll ever see - which, funnily enough, is probably where you’ll find him this December.

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