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Yet Another One Bites The Dust In English Football
Footytubeblog (Blog) 4 years ago
Maybe I’m a little short-sighted, old fashioned in my ways, but I believe a football manager should have full control of the club in every single way. Too many cooks spoil the broth and it amazes me how many club owners have been willing to take the risk. Maybe the current financial situation in football is dictating their thought process, but it certainly has its downside.

I know many of you will point to the success it has had on the continent, but that doesn’t mean it has to work here. They work on a total different set-up where the Sporting Director actually runs the football club in every aspect and a Head Coach is brought in to run the team. If the club fails on the pitch the coach is replaced, while the Sporting Director carries on going about his business. I understand the financial logic and business sense behind it, but does it mean it is right for football?

Tottenham were one of the pioneers in bringing it to English football and accumulated mixed results. The thinking of Spurs was that after years of reckless spending and the accumulation of a big squad on high wages, (largely down to the high turnover of managers, who brought in their own players) the need to get hold of the transfer policy before it spiralled out of all control was of great importance. It has proved a great success and you only have to look at the North Londoners financial results in the past six years to see its benefits. Frank Arnesen changed the ethos at the club when it came to player recruitment and although it wasn’t that successful under Comolli; Levy has maintained the structure albeit with him taking control of transfers, largely down to Harry Redknapp’s reluctance to work in such a set-up. As a club owner you can see why the model is obviously appealing, but it will only work if the Sporting Director and the manager work well in tandem. History shows they rarely do in England and that is why they seemingly always end in tears.

Damien Comolli is the latest Sporting Director to lose his job in England, the second time it has happened for him in the space of five years. Obviously he leaves with everyone’s best wishes, as he did at Tottenham, but the bottom line is millions of pounds have been squandered at the football club as there has been an overspend on players who haven’t performed. Comolli seemed to work on the same philosophy he did at White Hart Lane where rather than targeting the up and coming youngsters of the game, he would go in at the high end and pay top dollar for the perceived top English talent in the Premier League. Spurs saw the likes of Darren Bent and David Bentley brought to the club in £15m+ deals that subsequently failed, in much the same way Liverpool are witnessing now with Carroll, Henderson and Downing.

A successful Sporting Director targets players before they reach their optimum value in the transfer market so the club will then profit from them in the future. Frank Arnesen managed to get Aaron Lennon, Michael Dawson and Tom Huddlestone for a combined fee of around £5m in total – three players that have since become internationals and whose combined value far outweighs the initial outlay. Paying top price for players makes little sense as you are never going to get your money back, or potentially make profit on the investment in years to come. Liverpool are never going to get their money back on these expensive outlays, who from the outset don’t look like the solution in guiding the Reds back to where they belong in challenging for the title every season. You can understand the decision of Liverpool to part-company with Comolli, whose departure will make certain clubs in England apprehensive of adopting a similar recruitment approach.

Blog by Dom Thomas

This blog does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of footytube or its partners.
Mark99 (Sporting Kansas City) 4 years ago
Well said
UDECHILE (Univ de Chile) 4 years ago
Torres- £50m, Carroll- £35m, and I mean both are capable strikers.... But were they worth such astonishing amount of money? The system you proposed at the end (scout them when young) and the results one could gain (great players like Lennon, Dawson and Huddlestone for Spurs) should really be taken by every manager that wishes "clean" success. What do I mean by "clean" success? Although I support Man see dearly, it is fact that money/oil was the source of our sudden rise to the top of the table (we WERE there for a while, chill Man UTD fans). The tight correlation between big-money-spending and abrupt success left us with fall-outs between players, ego-rages (Tevez at Bayern game), an overtly deppresive manager (Mancinis "finished" quote about Tevez) and Balo. Yes, one can gain lots of individual talent by buying them for lots and at peak but working together, as a team, will always be a hassle (without Yaya or Silva at times we just seem to fall apart). I really enjoyed Spurs playing style at the beginning of the season, when they were most deadly, and although the heat has somewhat dimished now as of late, they never fail to impress. I'm sure their intelligent recruitment system had something to do with their success real good article, mate
Shadowolfs (Manchester United) 4 years ago
I believe after city spanked them 5-1 (?) that they shifted their style which forces bale and lennon into the center more. I believe they played a 4-4-2 when they noramlly play a different formation (idk what their formation is)
UDECHILE (Univ de Chile) 4 years ago
Oh I wasn't comparing Spurs and City.... I was just saying that instead on relying just on money, City should (like Spurs) follow their intelligent recruitment system as to have a more stable base of talented players who come young to the club and are not just ego
Ant (Liverpool) 4 years ago
Good article, great picture accompanying it
Shadowolfs (Manchester United) 4 years ago
Ok so I really don't care about this article, I really think that that author should do an article about how all these heart attacks and stuff are happening and how they need to test the health of the palyers each week. This is what the fouth heart attack on the field in a month (this was the EPL, one in India (RIP), this one (RIP) and I thought their was another one this year). I mean isn't their stress test, blood work, heart checks and the hundreds of things that can be checked, I am sure their is one of them that could help with what is becoming a sad and more frequent thing in the sport today. I mean I'm american and I watch a lot of football. And you cannot tell me that the linemen that run all voer that field (what 290-400 lbs) plus their pads can have less stress on their heart then a footballer who is in shape and has a very high endurance rate
[account-removed] 4 years ago
Good article. Not a fan of Sporting Directors in British clubs. It might work elsewhere, but I prefer to see managers take charge of every aspect of the club as long as he is capable at it e. G. Sir Alex, Arsene Wenger, David Moyes, etc
Wildhog1 (Liverpool) 4 years ago
Sorry but king kenny has to go another anfield joke performance against west brom any other prem manager would have been sacked by now

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