The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the tag “rotherham”

Surely the real failures in football are those that select the managers? 

Time and time again there are rounds of managerial sackings. Usually focused on certain times in the season when relegation becomes possible or likely.  New managers are employed and sometimes as with Neil Warnock at Rotherham last season with surprising success. Rotherham were doomed and adrift yet somehow survived. Warnock chose to then leave at the end of his short term contract with little opportunity to build a platform for any longer term growth. Now 6 months later Rotherham lie adrift at the bottom of the championship with their best hope of success being the Pope and a miracle. 

Leyton Orient as they will always be named in my universe have had six managers since September 2014 under the curious ownership of Francesco Becchetti. Working in their HR department must be an enlightening and busy role. Try and imagine the cost of paying up a minimum of six annual salaries to those sacked encumbents and one arrives at a figure that surely must be around a million pounds if not substantially greater. An average crowd at Orient might be 4000 being generous. Let’s guess the gate revenue for each game as an average of £18. Again a generous assertion. £72000 per game. Needing around 14 home games to simply cover the costs of the managerial sackings. I will emphasise these are all estimates and guesswork and I have less secret intelligence in these matters than even the German police. But the figures are unlikely to be widely wrong. Put concisely the cost of managerial sackings is high even if we discount the lack of any longer term plan being administered for a team or club by the manager. Success never comes overnight hence this cost is likely significantly greater. 

Alan Pardew looks like he gets a payoff after being sacked for failure of around 5 million pounds. Assuming an average of 30£ per ticket Crystal Palace would need to sell 167,000 tickets to fund this large donation to the Pardew household. 

Currently 22 of the 92 league managers have been sacked since the start of the 2016 season. That’s in under five months.  Of these 22 only ten have had a year in charge with many having only 1-4 months. 

So who chooses these managers? Has anyone audited how bad they are at personnel selection? Do the same characters get to select again? This is one area shroudedin mist and mystery and no wonder why. Their choosing is clearly fatally flawed. What might they look for in a manager? What are their own criteria for success at instigation of the contract? How can they possibly get things so ridiculously and chaotically wrong after 52 days for Alberto Cavasin at Orient? Or 87 days for WALTER Zenga at Wolves? One accepts that sometimes faces do not fit but surely some due diligence is needed and done? Many of these managers are on the managerial roundabout and one suspects reasons for failure are similar at different clubs. I do not buy into the argument that a failed manager at premiership level suddenly becomes a good choice for a lower league side. In fact logic and facts dictate I am correct in this assertion. 

Let’s return to Rotherham who sacked Alan Stubbs after 140 days. Stubbs had a decent track record at Hibernian and arguably should have stayed there. Needless to say he is one of the favourite options for other managerial roles including Barnet andScotland. 

Supporters of clubs should demand that the board is more accountable for their selection of managers and when it goes wrong they should be sacked from choosing managers. 

Was Brentford 2-1 Rotherham one of our most important games ever? A few thoughts and photos

This might sound ridiculous to the casual football observer and critic but this game rates up there with play off finals in order of its importance. The increasing turbulence and mutterings of discontent against the owner, manager,players and no doubt the programme sellers has been assuming absurd proportions. Last season was a one off. A group of committed players, playing well beyond their potential at times, a few good slices of luck  and importantly a relatively injury free season allowed the stars to align and Brentford to achieve an outcome almost undreamt of.

This season has been a disaster so far this is true. Some of the more worrying elements come in almost forgotten metrics such as a significantly reduced number of travelling fans, less vocal support from the home crowds and most worryingly for me, the reduced tempo and work rate that has been the norm this season. Of course the results are important but the manner of the performances are what dictates the pleasure or displeasure levels of the Brentford faithful.

What we saw yesterday was a spirited performance that maybe deserved the 3 points despite being at times the weaker side. The work rate was high and the effort cannot be faulted. The performance of Jake Bidwell was one of his best in a Brentford shirt.

There can be no doubt we were lucky to win and the neutral observer would have scored this as a draw. An exciting game played by two teams who found it difficult to defend well.

The three points are like gold dust. They give us some breathing space, introduce a winning mentality confidence and importantly consign Rotherham to at least another week below us in the relegation zone. That we are beating the weaker sides is actually very important. All the three sides we have beaten represent sides that will be in bottom 8 places come the end of the season. Relegation for Brentford would herald another difficult mountain to climb to escape League 1 and we can see how difficult that is for large clubs such as Sheffield United. However this season ends we need to end it in the Championship and one can argue that the re-building process can now resume. I personally think some of the new signings will be successful at Brentford and some will not. I also think based on yesterday that Lee Carsley is moulding a unit in his style of play, more rugged and physical than maybe we have been used to. Let us see how that works out.


Jack O’Connell signs for Brentford FC from Blackburn

Seems that Sky reckon the Bees have paid around £200,000 for the 20 year old 6ft 3ins 85 kg defender  from Blackburn Rovers.He has had two loan spells with League One side Rochdale this season, making 20 appearances and scoring three goals.His only appearance for Blackburn was the Capital One cup defeat by Scunthorpe in August. Other loan spells have been at Rotherham and York. He has also been capped at England under 18 and under 19 level. In total he has made 59 league appearances in his career before the 2014-15 season. This season in 20 appearances in all competitions at Rochdale he has scored 3 goals, the first of his career with only 2 yellow cards. In the 2013-14 season he played 45 games, with 4 yellow cards and 1 red card. And in 2012-13 in 23 games he had only 2 yellow cards.

So in 88 games as a central defender he has only had 9 yellow/red cards, an impressive statistic. Blackburn Rovers signed Jack O’Connell in the summer of 2011-12.He went on to make 35 appearances for the Academy and Reserves sides in an outstanding first year that saw him play a key role as Rovers reached the final of both the FA Youth Cup and the Academy League. Then headed out on loan to Rotherham, York and Rochdale.

Brentford get promotion on an exceedingly Good Friday

Having followed Brentford for 50 years days like this are rare and rarely are they better. Looking at the maths just before lunchtime it became apparent that Bees had a chance of being promoted yesterday if they won and results went their way. Both happened. A tense game but perhaps more easily won than score suggests 1-0, a penalty at that, and Bees also missed another at the Ealing Road end…..

But the outpouring of happiness could only be seen in a small club over achieving and now wondering how much further we might go? We are no smaller a club than Fulham. Indeed in those days when Fulham flirted with relegation from Division 4, their crowds were in the 3-4000 mark and Bees rarely got anywhere as low as that in comparable times.

What has happened? Well Mark Warburton has happened. A manager in his first job taking over a third of the way through the season. Without doubt he improved the play and the players. He signed only a small number of good players instead of dozens of me-too’s. My own view that may not be shared by all is that he is a far superior manager to Uwe. That is a compliment and not a put down to Uwe.

These photos below show the exact moment we thought we had won promotion ( in fact because of that crazy Wolves v Rotherhams game, ending 6-4 eventually, we were a little premature).

Just enjoy and share these photos!

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Sian Massey. Linesman or Lineswoman?

Sian Massey is an English football referee who is 28 years old and has been officiating in the football league and premier league since 2010 when she turned professional.  Although the subject of some controversy over alleged sexist remarks from SKY presenters she has been well recieved in the football game. The few times she has officiated at Brentford, including running the line today Brentford v Rotherham, her performances have been in my humble view amongst some of the best. Maybe her original chosen profession as a teacher might have helped her.

Sian Massey

Sian Massey

Sian Massey

Sian Massey

photo5 photop photou

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