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A long pause to think and observe - why this could be a very shrewd move by the club


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7 minutes ago, mozo said:

To the point that Downing and Simpson are now long term coaches, whereas Head Coach can be replaced if necessary, I completely understand the argument that this could offer a stability and a focus on the development of young players.

It would, however, limit our search for future head coaches. Any HCs that like their own team around them would be excluded, and you can forget about old style managers.

It is hard to work out the overall game plan, but DH wanted those two coaches according to MA. The overall cost of managers coming in with their own entourage and paying off the departing team seems to be what we are trying to get away from, with only partial success.  The drive to keep the club as a developer of youth must be right in the long run though and I, for one, applaud the board for sticking to the vision.

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1 hour ago, Davefevs said:

Never, ever has been about the way he talks for me....I actually expect him to talk like a CEO.

Re recruitment we have to see the players we see come in and go out and judge on that.  Under LJ’s reign I lay blame at both LJ and MA’s feet.  On paper in the last 2 seasons there haven’t been many I couldn’t see the logic with on “paper”, but integration into the playing side has been patchy.  That’s either LJ’s fault or the recruitment teams fact finding / background checks....or both.

Im really intrigued to see how Holden approaches this (supported by Simpson and Downing).

I enjoyed reading that...and the follow-up too.

I also think it is fair to say that although the club is financially well-run, probably operationally slick too, the way the club communicates with its “customers” is not well-run, at best it is inconsistent.  It is slow to communicate, there have been several needs to back-track (suggesting wrong implementation in the first place) and I know social media is a different audience, but it misses the mood massively / regularly.  The triumvirate command of Ashton / Knight / Barton are failing in that respect.  So buts if the business well run, some bits not.

A balanced view Dave. I broadly agree, though on the financial front scatter gun recruitment has led to far too high a wage bill.

I have long believed though that the primary aim is a financial one  - trading players to boost the finances. Promotion is a nice to have but secondary imo. Indeed Ashton himself said that Dean has no such target.

So a secure place in the Championship while generating money from trading will do. Which is a fair enough strategy in its own terms - just be honest about it and stop treating fans with such disdain.

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6 hours ago, Sandhurst Red said:

I've kept quiet over the last 6 weeks - looking on from afar whilst all unfolded and now feel able to comment on the situation. Like lots of posters on here, many have yet to express their opinion and the mass outcry does not necessarily reflect all of the fan base.

At first, like many I was appalled with what I was seeing, and the silence was deafening. It was a real concern to what was being done to a club that is a large part of my life, like many other who support it. 

Since then, my stance has softened and changed. The more I read and speak to people in the game - this could turn out to be a very shrewd move by the club.

The question marks over Dean Holden still remain. The elongated process to reach his appointment must be reviewed as a club, and key individuals in the club hierarchy must question their role in that process and the lack of communication throughout. I understand we have no right as fans, but it smacks of ignorance to feel that a football club can operate with customers, opposed to fans - irrespective of the changing commercial model that elite sports has become.

Holden may well have a vision. He may well have brilliant expertise and abilities. He appears to have the support of the players. What he does lack is the experience that the board stated was critical for the next phase of the clubs history and desired rise. That failure is not on Holden, more on the communicators. (Steve Lansdown in particular needs to be held to account for this and apologise to Holden for causing the murky undertones that we have seen in the fan base of late).

What has I think been overlooked is the new set-up and vision. Although Hughton was the people's choice, other clubs have seemingly passed on him recently too. This could be for a number of reasons, and though I am not doubting his credentials, there must be something that is putting potential suitors off appointing him. For anyone that has read the Bielsa book and when he was appointed at Leeds, it transpires that at least 2 managers that Leeds spoke with could barely name any players and felt their reputation was enough. Look at the journeymen managers like Mark Hughes etc. who have got jobs time and time again based on this. I am not saying Hughton was like that, but an interview is critical and perhaps he left the board feeling flat.

The boldest step taken however by the club, is the taking of not one, but two very well respected coaches from the English F.A Set-up. Speaking with people I know working in the game, both coaches come very highly recommended. Southgate was very saddened by their departures and recognises all they have both individually achieved. Their reputation goes beyond the English set-up with other coaches from national set-ups reviewing what we have done with the under-19s and under-20s and trying to emulate it. That we have managed to persuade both to leave their roles is quite something, and to me states that we really believe in a youth set-up for the future. If Holden were to not achieve what he sets out, then both coaches would be retained and a new head coach implemented. Who that could be, and their pedigree will be debated should that happen, but Downing and Simpson will be here for the long-term with the set-up we are going towards.

The fact that Holden is on a 12 month contract does indeed say a lot. The current financial climate will have dictated some of that, but it also means that the model is where the vision is, and head coach is interchangeable to fulfill that vision. It may take a bit longer, but sustainability in football with youth investment is critical. What football clubs are seeing behind the scenes is painful - and it is no exaggeration that over 30 clubs across the Championship, League One and League Two are fighting for their very survival. This has been on the cards for some time, COVID has merely brought that forward.

Last and by no means least - how we are operating as a football club off the field is the bit which definitely has cause for concern. The communication strategy (as someone who works in marketing and comms) has been atrocious. There are so many aspects that I could and would love to critique. It has been painful to see how this whole situation has been handled, and sadly that goes back for over 2 years since the club restructured itself internally. For those that have seen season 2 of Sunderland til I die', I can't help but see Ashton in a similar vein to Charlie Methven. His whole approach is corporate and egotistical. The way the communication has been handled is farcical, and if this vision goes horribly wrong, then Ashton will have to fall on his sword. He and Lansdown had the final say on that set-up and vision, so must take accountability for what plays out. We may not like it, we may wish to contest and feel it will be wrong - but we simply don't know that to be the case. It is a gamble, and slightly unorthodox. 

That said, if this does go well - then praise should also be forthcoming. The vision and fulfillment of it could be inspired and as I have pondered this post for some time, I feel much more optimistic about the future on the field and with the playing set-up at all levels, and how that will develop and evolve. Large questions remain with the off the field approach, but I concede the pressures the club is facing through the crisis that football is going through.

Either way, now is the time to regroup as a fanbase. Those that follow and support need to unite, and if you have lost that love and buzz - by all means take some time away and come back when appropriate. This is a new chapter for the club, but on reflection and consultation with experienced personnel in the game that know far more than I do, I genuinely feel excited about what we are doing, despite the risks outlined. 
 

Really good post.

I wasn't happy with the appointment but I do quite like the fact there is now a very clear emphasis on a "coaching team" and the fact that the plan seems to be largely based around getting the best out of the players in the squad (including those out on loan last season) rather than tearing everything up and starting again. I also like the fact that Holden appears to not be afraid to make decisions and wants to be supported with coaches with experience who can point out where he is going wrong.

There's been speculation that the club appointed Holden to be a "Yes man". I've no idea whether that is true or not but am starting to think that, if they did, it might be a miscalculation and that Holden is going to do things his way.

As you say, it is still a massive gamble as to whether Holden is the right man for the job but, if the thinking is that Holden has strong man-management skills and a good relationship with the players but needs to be augmented with coaches who can back him up around tactical nous and experience, it is a better plan on paper than it seemed when Holden was appointed. Let's hope he delivers.

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32 minutes ago, chinapig said:

A balanced view Dave. I broadly agree, though on the financial front scatter gun recruitment has led to far too high a wage bill.

I have long believed though that the primary aim is a financial one  - trading players to boost the finances. Promotion is a nice to have but secondary imo. Indeed Ashton himself said that Dean has no such target.

So a secure place in the Championship while generating money from trading will do. Which is a fair enough strategy in its own terms - just be honest about it and stop treating fans with such disdain.

Has Ashton said that? If you’re referring to Twentyman, I interpreted that as a question that Ashton didn’t really want to answer - but begrudgingly said promotion is the aim. 

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23 minutes ago, chinapig said:

A balanced view Dave. I broadly agree, though on the financial front scatter gun recruitment has led to far too high a wage bill.

I have long believed though that the primary aim is a financial one  - trading players to boost the finances. Promotion is a nice to have but secondary imo. Indeed Ashton himself said that Dean has no such target.

So a secure place in the Championship while generating money from trading will do. Which is a fair enough strategy in its own terms - just be honest about it and stop treating fans with such disdain.

I agree..imo..MA is judged on balancing the books, even though he has massive influence on transfers.

Any Coach is judged on performance and points.

MA is in a win win situation.

Bringing in bright and hungry players that you can add value to with coaching is a catch 22.

It'll give you a level of performance on the pitch that can slightly improve, but doesn't give you experience that's needed for top 6.

MA is into a winner under our system imo.

If it were to bring in experienced players that we will keep for three years it would be different imo... especially if it were in the 26-30 age bracket. We aim to go below that.

It's been 'traditional' to sell players at around 29 as they are seen as past their best and looking for last contract.

Imo...we need to find more of a balance between exciting youth and experience. Experience from higher levels, not under us.

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5 minutes ago, Phileas Fogg said:

Has Ashton said that? If you’re referring to Twentyman, I interpreted that as a question that Ashton didn’t really want to answer - but begrudgingly said promotion is the aim. 

My recollection is like yours in so far as he didn't want to answer but was pressed into it. But also that he said that Dean has no target. Happy to be corrected though if my memory is faulty.

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Very good opening post.

I'll comment on just one aspect. I have felt since LJ arrived and then brought in two young and somewhat inexperienced assistants that we lacked a wider, older head.

So while Dean Holden is very much a new boy at management, it is the recruitment of not one but two very experienced assistants, that I'm pleased with.

Its great to be young with lots of energy but it's amazing how much one learns through the years. An older head so that the young blood learns how not to make the same mistakes that were made by the elders.

I have gone from disappointment to cautiously optimistic in a week or so.

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2 minutes ago, cidered abroad said:

Very good opening post.

I'll comment on just one aspect. I have felt since LJ arrived and then brought in two young and somewhat inexperienced assistants that we lacked a wider, older head.

So while Dean Holden is very much a new boy at management, it is the recruitment of not one but two very experienced assistants, that I'm pleased with.

Its great to be young with lots of energy but it's amazing how much one learns through the years. An older head so that the young blood learns how not to make the same mistakes that were made by the elders.

I have gone from disappointment to cautiously optimistic in a week or so.

I recall when MA spoke about certain players that had experience...but that experience was from playing with us for a few years. That's different to having experience from a higher level imo...that's what we need. Gary O'Neil is a good example of experience from that level...but injury got him as well as other internals. I see he's now coach for Liverpool U 23s.

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31 minutes ago, Phileas Fogg said:

Has Ashton said that? If you’re referring to Twentyman, I interpreted that as a question that Ashton didn’t really want to answer - but begrudgingly said promotion is the aim. 

 

22 minutes ago, chinapig said:

My recollection is like yours in so far as he didn't want to answer but was pressed into it. But also that he said that Dean has no target. Happy to be corrected though if my memory is faulty.

I've got it my head that you're both right but that Gregorface also asked that question and again the answer was along the lines of promotion is always the aim.

He was obviously avoiding an ultimatum statement (and so he should!), but with a 12 month contract in play Ashton can apply that ultimatum quite comfortably. 

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35 minutes ago, cidered abroad said:

Very good opening post.

I'll comment on just one aspect. I have felt since LJ arrived and then brought in two young and somewhat inexperienced assistants that we lacked a wider, older head.

So while Dean Holden is very much a new boy at management, it is the recruitment of not one but two very experienced assistants, that I'm pleased with.

Its great to be young with lots of energy but it's amazing how much one learns through the years. An older head so that the young blood learns how not to make the same mistakes that were made by the elders.

I have gone from disappointment to cautiously optimistic in a week or so.

Me too, either a Lenny Lawrence type guiding recruitment and stuff, or a Don Howe type re tactics.

I posted elsewhere that Simpson and Downing could be really good for Dean....and us.

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2 minutes ago, Davefevs said:

Me too, either a Lenny Lawrence type guiding recruitment and stuff, or a Don Howe type re tactics.

I posted elsewhere that Simpson and Downing could be really good for Dean....and us.

Joe Jordan for me to take this roll. Plus he only lives down the road.

I see him quite often watching youth football as his son coaches.

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Employing Keith and Paul made all the difference to the notion of making Dean head coach, experienced coaches with the rookie "manager" in charge. If that was the plan (even only from last Thursday week) why didn't they just say that? (Apologies if MA did say that but I don't recall him saying that anywhere). Just stating that DH was the right man didn't really cut it. The idea of DH, JmC and AW was a horrifying thought…

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Does anyone know of a previous set up anywhere where there was a rookie  head coach with two experienced assistants? I just can’t see players respecting DH as an authority figure in that arrangement. It was repeatedly stated that “Dean is his own man” including by Dean himself. When something like that has to emphasised it usually means the opposite. Surely that is assumed for any head coach? Why keep saying it?

Anyway, I’m willing to go with it and get behind the club for now. The performances and results will tell us everything we need to know.

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46 minutes ago, exAtyeoMax said:

Employing Keith and Paul made all the difference to the notion of making Dean head coach, experienced coaches with the rookie "manager" in charge. If that was the plan (even only from last Thursday week) why didn't they just say that? (Apologies if MA did say that but I don't recall him saying that anywhere). Just stating that DH was the right man didn't really cut it. The idea of DH, JmC and AW was a horrifying thought…

I think it was MA that said something along the lines of:

the one thing Dean doesn’t have is experience, but we have that in his assistants.

Think it was in the club YouTube video, rather than Twentyman.

 

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Just now, Davefevs said:

I think it was MA that said something along the lines of:

the one thing Dean doesn’t have is experience, but we have that in his assistants.

Think it was in the club YouTube video, rather than Twentyman.

 

ok thanks. Why not make more of that in their comms? The whole scenario makes more sense now…I'm sure that would have placated more fans who were concerned…

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39 minutes ago, exAtyeoMax said:

Employing Keith and Paul made all the difference to the notion of making Dean head coach, experienced coaches with the rookie "manager" in charge. If that was the plan (even only from last Thursday week) why didn't they just say that? (Apologies if MA did say that but I don't recall him saying that anywhere). Just stating that DH was the right man didn't really cut it. The idea of DH, JmC and AW was a horrifying thought…

Good thread OP. Interesting discussion. 
 

Agree Max. I think the understanding / acceptance of the majority of fans would’ve been more easily achieved if there was just the slightest hint of honesty from the club. 
Now the dust has settled, I can see what we’re trying to do and I can accept it (and am actually rather intrigued and excited by it). 
Just so much easier if they just communicated the plan so much earlier and  more honestly. 

11 minutes ago, TedsHeadIs Red said:

Does anyone know of a previous set up anywhere where there was a rookie  head coach with two experienced assistants? I just can’t see players respecting DH as an authority figure in that arrangement. It was repeatedly stated that “Dean is his own man” including by Dean himself. When something like that has to emphasised it usually means the opposite. Surely that is assumed for any head coach? Why keep saying it?

Anyway, I’m willing to go with it and get behind the club for now. The performances and results will tell us everything we need to know.

I can only think of how they do things in the NFL. 
With NFL teams you have a Head Coach, who then hires his staff which include an Offensive Co-Ordinator, a Defensive Co-ordinator, then various position coaches under them (line coaches, qb coach, secondary coach, linebacker coach, receivers coach, backs coach etc). 
Above all that is a General Manager - he’s the guy who does the hiring and firing, and is the one who makes the calls on draft picks, free agency signings etc. 
Then you’ll have, above all that, the owner. 
 

We have the owner - SL. 
We have the General Manager - MA. 
We have the Head Coach - DH. 
 

What many NFL teams do is to hire a rookie head coach and then place experienced coaches into the two main Co-ordinator roles (OC & DC). They’ll then tend to fill the positional coaching positions with a mixture of guys that have been with the team for years, and then rookie guys who are working their way up to being HC’s. 
 

I see what we’ve done here as being very similar to many NFL franchises. Bring in the guy who’s done his stripes as a positional coach, and put 2 old-heads in as the OC & DC. 
 

A very American model, I’d say. 
Whether it’ll work in English football, only time will tell, but there is definitely a US influence in our boardroom decision making. 
 

I’m over the initial “what the ****” let-down and am actually now genuinely intrigued and excited at how this is going to pan out. If we see an influx of 3 or 4 foreign signings then I think we’re headed the wrong way. Hopefully Holden has been given plenty of freedom to play a youthful team, without having the pressure of results. LJ, I felt, turned his back on the ‘pathway’ as he knew that he didn’t have time on his side any more and had to get results. 
It’s a tough tough ask for a manager to ask him to get to the playoffs AND make sure you blood academy youngsters. Pressure of results soon tell. LJ knew he could do this for his first 2 years here, but the last 18 months have definitely shyed away from that path. I’m hoping DH has a the freedom to do this and we see Morrell, Moore, Walsh  etc, plus others making gradual breakthroughs such as Semenyo, Pring, Pearson. 
That’s the intriguing and exciting part - can we be brave enough to do this, and play an exciting game, and can it work. 

I’m looking forward to it. 

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7 minutes ago, Harry said:

Good thread OP. Interesting discussion. 
 

Agree Max. I think the understanding / acceptance of the majority of fans would’ve been more easily achieved if there was just the slightest hint of honesty from the club. 
Now the dust has settled, I can see what we’re trying to do and I can accept it (and am actually rather intrigued and excited by it). 
Just so much easier if they just communicated the plan so much earlier and  more honestly. 

I can only think of how they do things in the NFL. 
With NFL teams you have a Head Coach, who then hires his staff which include an Offensive Co-Ordinator, a Defensive Co-ordinator, then various position coaches under them (line coaches, qb coach, secondary coach, linebacker coach, receivers coach, backs coach etc). 
Above all that is a General Manager - he’s the guy who does the hiring and firing, and is the one who makes the calls on draft picks, free agency signings etc. 
Then you’ll have, above all that, the owner. 
 

We have the owner - SL. 
We have the General Manager - MA. 
We have the Head Coach - DH. 
 

What many NFL teams do is to hire a rookie head coach and then place experienced coaches into the two main Co-ordinator roles (OC & DC). They’ll then tend to fill the positional coaching positions with a mixture of guys that have been with the team for years, and then rookie guys who are working their way up to being HC’s. 
 

I see what we’ve done here as being very similar to many NFL franchises. Bring in the guy who’s done his stripes as a positional coach, and put 2 old-heads in as the OC & DC. 
 

A very American model, I’d say. 
Whether it’ll work in English football, only time will tell, but there is definitely a US influence in our boardroom decision making. 
 

I’m over the initial “what the ****” let-down and am actually now genuinely intrigued and excited at how this is going to pan out. If we see an influx of 3 or 4 foreign signings then I think we’re headed the wrong way. Hopefully Holden has been given plenty of freedom to play a youthful team, without having the pressure of results. LJ, I felt, turned his back on the ‘pathway’ as he knew that he didn’t have time on his side any more and had to get results. 
It’s a tough tough ask for a manager to ask him to get to the playoffs AND make sure you blood academy youngsters. Pressure of results soon tell. LJ knew he could do this for his first 2 years here, but the last 18 months have definitely shyed away from that path. I’m hoping DH has a the freedom to do this and we see Morrell, Moore, Walsh  etc, plus others making gradual breakthroughs such as Semenyo, Pring, Pearson. 
That’s the intriguing and exciting part - can we be brave enough to do this, and play an exciting game, and can it work. 

I’m looking forward to it. 

Interesting about the NFL, thanks.

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28 minutes ago, Harry said:

Good thread OP. Interesting discussion. 
 

Agree Max. I think the understanding / acceptance of the majority of fans would’ve been more easily achieved if there was just the slightest hint of honesty from the club. 
Now the dust has settled, I can see what we’re trying to do and I can accept it (and am actually rather intrigued and excited by it). 
Just so much easier if they just communicated the plan so much earlier and  more honestly. 

I can only think of how they do things in the NFL. 
With NFL teams you have a Head Coach, who then hires his staff which include an Offensive Co-Ordinator, a Defensive Co-ordinator, then various position coaches under them (line coaches, qb coach, secondary coach, linebacker coach, receivers coach, backs coach etc). 
Above all that is a General Manager - he’s the guy who does the hiring and firing, and is the one who makes the calls on draft picks, free agency signings etc. 
Then you’ll have, above all that, the owner. 
 

We have the owner - SL. 
We have the General Manager - MA. 
We have the Head Coach - DH. 
 

What many NFL teams do is to hire a rookie head coach and then place experienced coaches into the two main Co-ordinator roles (OC & DC). They’ll then tend to fill the positional coaching positions with a mixture of guys that have been with the team for years, and then rookie guys who are working their way up to being HC’s. 
 

I see what we’ve done here as being very similar to many NFL franchises. Bring in the guy who’s done his stripes as a positional coach, and put 2 old-heads in as the OC & DC. 
 

A very American model, I’d say. 
Whether it’ll work in English football, only time will tell, but there is definitely a US influence in our boardroom decision making. 
 

I’m over the initial “what the ****” let-down and am actually now genuinely intrigued and excited at how this is going to pan out. If we see an influx of 3 or 4 foreign signings then I think we’re headed the wrong way. Hopefully Holden has been given plenty of freedom to play a youthful team, without having the pressure of results. LJ, I felt, turned his back on the ‘pathway’ as he knew that he didn’t have time on his side any more and had to get results. 
It’s a tough tough ask for a manager to ask him to get to the playoffs AND make sure you blood academy youngsters. Pressure of results soon tell. LJ knew he could do this for his first 2 years here, but the last 18 months have definitely shyed away from that path. I’m hoping DH has a the freedom to do this and we see Morrell, Moore, Walsh  etc, plus others making gradual breakthroughs such as Semenyo, Pring, Pearson. 
That’s the intriguing and exciting part - can we be brave enough to do this, and play an exciting game, and can it work. 

I’m looking forward to it. 

Was it you who mentioned that JL was a fan of NFL last week? Did you mention this set-up on another thread? 

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37 minutes ago, Davefevs said:

I think it was MA that said something along the lines of:

the one thing Dean doesn’t have is experience, but we have that in his assistants.

Think it was in the club YouTube video, rather than Twentyman.

 

And my concern about the two assistants is what have they ever achieved. How much Championship football have they experience of? It’s very different from young, keen lads playing for England and just delighted to have been selected. In that situation if something doesn’t work they can just pick again from the pot for the next game. Also they are pretty much selecting from the cream of the Premiership crop. 

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59 minutes ago, TedsHeadIs Red said:

Does anyone know of a previous set up anywhere where there was a rookie  head coach with two experienced assistants? I just can’t see players respecting DH as an authority figure in that arrangement. It was repeatedly stated that “Dean is his own man” including by Dean himself. When something like that has to emphasised it usually means the opposite. Surely that is assumed for any head coach? Why keep saying it?

Anyway, I’m willing to go with it and get behind the club for now. The performances and results will tell us everything we need to know.

"I just can’t see players respecting DH" is maybe the issue here. By all accounts he is a very popular choice with the players and the two experienced coaches will defer to him because that is their job.  Maybe not a bad thing to give Dean Holden a bit of respect as a top coach in his own right. Lets see how he does before stating our negative opinions of his capabilities eh?

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3 minutes ago, RedM said:

And my concern about the two assistants is what have they ever achieved. How much Championship football have they experience of? It’s very different from young, keen lads playing for England and just delighted to have been selected. In that situation if something doesn’t work they can just pick again from the pot for the next game. Also they are pretty much selecting from the cream of the Premiership crop. 

Achieved?  In what way?  As England age group coaches? As club coaches / managers?

Both have said they are well up to speed with the Championship....they watch countless matches.

Seems like you’ve made up your mind though?

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9 hours ago, Bat Fastard said:

"I just can’t see players respecting DH" is maybe the issue here. By all accounts he is a very popular choice with the players and the two experienced coaches will defer to him because that is their job.  Maybe not a bad thing to give Dean Holden a bit of respect as a top coach in his own right. Lets see how he does before stating our negative opinions of his capabilities eh?

I don’t have negative opinions of his capabilities. But liking someone is not the same as respecting them. Teachers who can’t control a class are usually nice people and not necessarily disliked.
Experience deferring to inexperience is very difficult to pull off and the players may see it as a sham.

It was just a thought. Maybe the group dynamic will work really well. I wish DH every success.

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10 hours ago, Davefevs said:

Achieved?  In what way?  As England age group coaches? As club coaches / managers?

Both have said they are well up to speed with the Championship....they watch countless matches.

Seems like you’ve made up your mind though?

I am not for any of the appointments, but it is what it is so I am backing them but they will be under close scrutiny from me. I’m not going to jump on every mistake or think they are the answer after a couple of results either. 

I don’t know much about them, I’ll hold my hand up to that but how many other sides, yet alone Championship sides have taken two coaches from the England youth set up and put them with a rookie manager who has been part of a largely failed coaching team?

As I said motivating young men thrilled to be pulling on an England shirt isn’t the same as a trip to Luton on a wet Wednesday needing a result. They may have been watching the Championship but not through a club football viewpoint. How much experience have they had keeping a team steady in the Chsmpionship, never mind the top and bottom thrills and struggles. 

For me if something hasn’t been done too often there is usually a reason for it, unless you are brave or foolish.

To be honest, you are usually a poster who talks sense and I respect you views. If you think the way we have gone is progressive then that’s good enough for me.

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3 hours ago, RedM said:

I am not for any of the appointments, but it is what it is so I am backing them but they will be under close scrutiny from me. I’m not going to jump on every mistake or think they are the answer after a couple of results either. 

I don’t know much about them, I’ll hold my hand up to that but how many other sides, yet alone Championship sides have taken two coaches from the England youth set up and put them with a rookie manager who has been part of a largely failed coaching team?

As I said motivating young men thrilled to be pulling on an England shirt isn’t the same as a trip to Luton on a wet Wednesday needing a result. They may have been watching the Championship but not through a club football viewpoint. How much experience have they had keeping a team steady in the Chsmpionship, never mind the top and bottom thrills and struggles. 

For me if something hasn’t been done too often there is usually a reason for it, unless you are brave or foolish.

To be honest, you are usually a poster who talks sense and I respect you views. If you think the way we have gone is progressive then that’s good enough for me.

In fairness RedM, like you I will judge on how they do.  I was open minded on head-coach appointment, although wasn’t expecting Holden 6 weeks ago, but I liked what he did in his 5 games.  So when it was rumoured he was in with a chance I wasn’t against it.

Same with the assistants.  First thing I saw on social media was talk of a plethora of relegations, nothing positive at all.  My first thing was to go and check the facts.  I obviously knew about their England youth wins, and knew Simpson was at Carlisle (his team were staying at the hotel we got married in) and as a player, Downing as a player at Wolves and a period as coach at West Brom.  But doing the old Wikipedia and transfermarkt searches starts to pull up positives.  Simpson back to back promotions at Carlisle, 7th with Preston.  Downing promotion as assistant with John Ward at Cheltenham.

So both have done the hard yard apprenticeships, found their way into the FA set up and had success there.

So, I’m not instantly negative about their appointment.  Proof of the pudding is yet to come.  

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5 hours ago, RedM said:

 

5 hours ago, RedM said:

As I said motivating young men thrilled to be pulling on an England shirt isn’t the same as a trip to Luton on a wet Wednesday needing a result. They may have been watching the Championship but not through a club football viewpoint. How much experience have they had keeping a team steady in the Chsmpionship, never mind the top and bottom thrills and struggles.

Whilst criticism of the appointments / set up is perfectly valid, one thing I don’t think you can level at both Downing & Simpson is that they “can’t do it on a wet Wednesday at Luton/Stoke etc”. So I’m somewhat surprised at this comment. 
Both of them played the majority of their careers at Champ & L1 level, both of their managerial & coaching experiences are at Champ, L1 & L2 levels. 
Hell, Simpson even played for Stoke, so I’m sure he knows what it’s like up there on a wet Wednesday. 
I have no doubt that they both know exactly what it takes to motivate a team for this level of football. 

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