England Should Keep Their Bags Packed

I don’t expect much from England this summer, and here is why.

Despite the media hype, despite the undoubted talent, and despite being a man born and raised under the flag of the England football team, I have prepared myself for the worst.

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The 2002 World Cup Conspiracy

There are some things in football that I am still shocked by. Some things that occur that I just cannot get my head around and come to terms with. No matter how many years pass I always reflect on them with wonder. Fernando Torres’ decision to leave Liverpool for £50m is one of these, and so too is the 2002 World Cup. In particular the games in the knockout round between Italy and South Korea, and Spain and South Korea.

These games have been given the title of the fourth “Biggest Controversy In World Cup History” by Bleacher Report , one earned a place on ESPN’s 10 most controversial World Cup moments, and also featured on MSN’s “10 Worst World Cup Refereeing Decisions“. They quite rightly deserve all of this.

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Coping In The Dugout – Part Three

And so we head in to extra time. Following on from part one and part two, we now turn our attention towards development, recruitment and a vital skill that all great managers possess. The 90-Minute Manager has provided me with the spine of these articles, and as ever, all quotes are from that publication unless otherwise stated.

STRUCTURE AND FOUNDATION
In order for any project to be successful, the groundwork has to be laid first. The foundations must be solid, and if they are not, success will either be extremely short lived or very difficult to achieve. If a club is solely reliant on a billionaire owner then what happens when that owner decides to leave, or the money dries up? The club goes into free fall. Look at Portsmouth languishing down the bottom of League Two. Just five seasons ago Portsmouth were playing against the Likes of AC Milan in European competitions. How times change.

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Investment Puts Side Back On Road To Success

After a turbulent few seasons Hendy football club is well on its way to recovery. A steady transformation has been occurring lately, helped in no small part by an influx of fresh young talent, rejuvenating an aging side. Under the coaching of David Redfern, an FA level two coach, and with access to a £144,000 multi use games area (MUGA), Hendy are benefitting from arguably the best facilities in the division. The MUGA provides the team with state of the art facilities allowing them to train in all weathers. Hendy club captain Andrew ‘Cruncher’ Pritchard, who has been playing for the team since he was three, spoke proudly about the club and his involvement, stating “if there is no Hendy I don’t play football”. Under his leadership, and Alan ‘Scouse’ Blackley’s management, Hendy have performed well this season, pushing for a second place finish. Blackley said that Hendy meant “everything” to him and that the club is at “the heart of the community”. The future looks bright for the club and its players, and if the recovery continues Hendy may well find themselves challenging for silverware in the coming seasons.

Hendy FC

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Coping In The Dugout – Part Two

Welcome back, and welcome to part two. In part one we looked at the culture of a club, the treatment of its staff and the ambition and hunger of the manager. As was the case in part one, any quotes, unless otherwise noted, come from The 90-Minute Manager. The clock is ticking, let’s get back to the action.

FOCUS ON STRENGTHS
Unless you are at a very talented club, or have hundreds of millions of pounds in the transfer kitty, it is very unlikely that you will have world class talent covering every position on the pitch. The best managers are aware of the strengths and weaknesses of their team and they set up the team to maximise the strengths and minimize its weakness.

Continue reading “Coping In The Dugout – Part Two”