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And lo, it came to pass that, on 16th November 1994, issue 2 of The Echo, or more accurately, issue 2a was unveiled to a largely disinterested populace.

You probaly can't tell from the poor quality scan above, but Mr Smith was made manager of the month, by virtue of his winning the Cartel Cup, although he still doesn't know the rules. As a result, he posed in front of the videoconferencing PC in typical camp thumbs up stylee.

However, Simon was still awarding prizes for winning the Manager of The Month Award, and Smithy was presented with a book by Arthur C Clarke. This was presumably a book that Simon had lying around.

The issue had a very dull look at Mr Millers Small Faces influenced team, this feature still being taken way too seriously, as well, as a questionnaire type thingy with Mr Smith that served to confirm all our deeply held suspicions about the man.

This issue was however, primarily notable for two reasons:

  1. It contained the first excuse for an issue being late.

  2. John Wilson saw this issue, and asked me to write an article for UK Today, something to do with the printers and inserters, and how the fulfilment of such was a joint operation between Liverpool & Northampton. I said I couldn't write that article, cos I had no interest in it. And then, three short years later, we get outsourced! Coincidence.... Or conspiracy. I'll let you decide.

  3. Oh yeah, it also had a joke about the CD Renewals that was, at the time, very funny. (Doesn't work now though)

From Issue 2a

"This award isn't just for me. It's for the players as well. So, I'll make sure I let each of them borrow this book after I've read it, and this award isn't just for me and the players, it's for the fans who've kept their faith and cheered us up the table, so after the players have all read this book, I'll let the fans have a look too. My message to the fans is 'Be patient. We're like a library with only one book, but what goes around comes around and everything comes to he who waits"

Mr Smith gets slightly carried away after being made manager of the month. The plan went awry however, as the book has been with Dennis Wise for 26 months now.

"You bloody youngsters. Leave me alone. Can't you see I'm an old man"

The first appearance of Mick Tharby's catchphrase, which strangely enough, he did start to use after seeing it in print

"The Jason Wilcox / Les Ferdinand swap deal is still more on than off, although that depends who you talk to"

Er, me talking bollox again I'm afraid.

And, from Mr Smith's interview -

What is your idea of perfect happiness ? - A four on, thirty off shift pattern.

What is your favourite word ? - Free.

Do you exercise ? - Only on my lunch breaks.

How would you spend a million pounds? - I'd put it in my Post Office account.

What car do you drive ? - Vauxhall Nova

What would your advice be to a trainee ? - Don't turn up on the first day.

How would you describe working for Royal ? I'll let you know when I do.

Do you have a motto that you live your life by? - What's that gonna cost me then ?

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