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Do Premier League Clubs Need A Director Of Football?
Footytubeblog (Blog) 1 year ago
As a footballing nation we are often set in our ways, too often content with our own methods to learn from our contemporaries. However as leagues continue to grow and prosper on the continent is it about time we took note in the Premier League  and learnt from our rivals?

The so-called continental management structure has been much maligned in the UK, with managers keen to exert as much power over transfer policy as is humanely possible. After a summer of transfer frustration for Moyes at Manchester United is it time more clubs adopted a director of football?

Moyes has been stung by intense criticism relating to the clubs transfer activity this summer. Directionless and ineffective, their conduct was nothing short of amateur from a club of such rich traditions. Even the last minute deal for Fellaini saw the club pay well above the release clause that expired earlier in the summer, a last resort surely?

A series of snubs saw the club miss out on the like of Ozil, Khedira and Thiago, quite bizarre for a club of United’s standing you would think?

The Mirror reports that Moyes is looking to conduct a total shakeup of his backroom staff as a means for ensuring such a mess doesn’t happen again:
“The new Reds chief plans to bring in his own men tried and trusted talent-spotters, as he overhauls his team”
“Moyes wants staff who do not just spot players but know exactly what their chances are of signing them.”

It became painfully apparent during the course of the summer that United officials were simply misinformed on key pieces of transfer information. The club sent Chief Scout Jim Lawlor to Spain to make contact with the family of Thiago according to the Mirror. However there were also reports that Lawlor was sent without accurate information about the potential cost of tying up a deal, something which you would imagine was quite important.

In the modern game there is becoming an increasing need for someone that specifically overseas transfer dealings and player recruitment. The role of director of football is commonplace on the continent, but in England we appear quite averse to it.

We are already seeing the results at Tottenham where the appointment of Franco Baldini has seen an effective targeted approach to transfers as opposed to the panicked scatter-bomb of the past. Daniel Levy is able to focus on commercial matters, Villas-Boas coaching and Baldini player recruitment. The complexities of modern football make this division a must and before long I am sure most of the top English clubs will begin to see the benefits.

It would appear Moyes is reluctant to go down this route to avoid undermining Chief Executive Ed Woodward, do you really think a more effective scouting network is the answer for United? Moyes is struggling because he is being involved in a complex series of deals which owing to his past he just simply isn't used to. What is the point of using scouts and managers to broker deals when there are already people out there to do that specific role?

Maybe clubs are just being a bit stubborn about the issue. United are not on their own here, the issue has been central to Arsenal for the last few seasons. Wenger appears intent on maintaining his vice like grip over the club rather than relinquish it and allow for a division of responsibilities. If someone is balancing a variety of roles at once, the result is that things take much longer to do. When United are competing with a club like Bayern where they employ a range of personnel to focus on player recruitment, it is unsurprising that they ultimately miss out on their targets.

English footballs insistence on living in the dark ages is beginning to harm it in a number of cases, but the aversion to a director of football is something easily changed. As clubs continue to see the profound effects on the continent as well as at clubs like Spurs I am sure attitudes will begin to change.
Do you think a director of football would have solved United’s transfer woes?

Written by Ollie Bishop

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