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The Coaches' Voice - LJ


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1 minute ago, Kodjias Wrist said:

Did he give a reason as to why he went on terrible runs that he could not turn around?

Nope... some horrendous losing runs.... followed by winning runs...followed by....brushed away.

LJ is a likeable character and wish him well.  Good chance we might see him back here next season...that will be interesting. I am Glad he left, his time had come, but I would applaud him on his return.

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3 minutes ago, And Its Smith said:

Good read as always. Really hope he takes Sunderland up. Deserves more respect than he gets on here 

Respect ?  As a manager what is his claim to fame.  He left BCFC in better shape than when he arrived with some 50 plus players in and out through the revolving door. I think that’s it really ( and of course a cup run). I think he is quite liked still, but recognised his time and come and he did fall short.. I think we will all keep an eye on Sunderland..

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24 minutes ago, spudski said:

I thought it was a good interview.

What I picked up on was 2018/19 was considered by him as our best chance to go up. And that we played our best football that season.

The reality when looking at the players we had back then and the quality, value,sell on value etc compared to what we have now is stark in its contrast. 

We are now in the transition period that the ' blueprint' has evolved too...where we are now playing and blooding players from the academy and those that have been loaned out before.

In theory, on paper we have a far weaker squad.

The injury scenario also rears its ugly head...maybe it wasn't just our high pressing game that caused more injuries. Does it happen at Leeds? They run like lunatics on coke all game.

Think it was a decent interview.... obviously asked to do it.

He said 17/18.

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18 minutes ago, DT The Optimist said:

Respect ?  As a manager what is his claim to fame.  He left BCFC in better shape than when he arrived with some 50 plus players in and out through the revolving door. I think that’s it really ( and of course a cup run). I think he is quite liked still, but recognised his time and come and he did fall short.. I think we will all keep an eye on Sunderland..

Why keep an eye on Sunderland?

Any club in the third tier with a capacity of over 40,000 and able to fill it all the time, will always get promotion sooner or later.

LJ cannot fail there. It's impossible to do otherwise. 

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Is there a coach that has won so little, and yet pumps out more interviews than LJ?

It's like a constant cry for attention.

The guy has won NOTHING - anywhere, ever, yet people are supposed to read the endless articles and see a winning coach?

I hope he does well up North.

Then perhaps he can do interviews when he finally wins something.

Edited by The Constant Rabbit
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13 minutes ago, cidered abroad said:

Why keep an eye on Sunderland?

Any club in the third tier with a capacity of over 40,000 and able to fill it all the time, will always get promotion sooner or later.

LJ cannot fail there. It's impossible to do otherwise. 

Quite a few managers have failed so clearly it’s not impossible 

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13 minutes ago, The Constant Rabbit said:

Is there a coach that has won so little, and yet pumps out more interviews than LJ?

It's like a constant cry for attention.

The guy has won NOTHING - anywhere, ever, yet people are supposed to read the endless articles and see a winning coach?

I hope he does well up North.

Then perhaps he can do interviews when he finally wins something.

You aren’t supposed to read it. You can read it if you choose too

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"That was the beauty of Bristol City – they stick by people. And lots of the people who I got to know when I was playing there have stayed for a long time – they were still there when I got the opportunity to go back."

The above may explain why the club is loved by many long-term employees, but, as a double-edged sword, may be a cause for the inevitable under-achievment over a number of years.

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7 hours ago, Red Finesse said:

https://www.coachesvoice.com/lee-johnson-bristol-city-sunderland/

I'm not his biggest fan, but I enjoyed this article.

I suppose I think it a bit strange that he’s not talking about his role at Sunderland. It’s the same information that is rehashed over and over, why aren’t they asking for his plans for his current club? If I was a Sunderland fan I’d be asking that. Is he really interested in our club? Or is it lazy journalism?

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8 hours ago, tommy_b said:

I mean he plays somewhat loosely with the finer details and timelines blur a bit with regards to player arrivals/departures. 
 

This was the big stretching of truth to me. From reading the article, if you didn’t know, you’d think we lost Kelly, Brownhill and Pack the summer after Man U and just got Webster in. The loss of Reid killed us that summer, it’d be better to focus on that

1 hour ago, exAtyeoMax said:

I suppose I think it a bit strange that he’s not talking about his role at Sunderland. It’s the same information that is rehashed over and over, why aren’t they asking for his plans for his current club? If I was a Sunderland fan I’d be asking that. Is he really interested in our club? Or is it lazy journalism?

I think, to be fair, he’s been at Sunderland 6 games (P6 W3 D3) - 7 if you count Wigan on the day he took over. I’d struggle to see how he could do an in depth retrospective on coaching after that time, particularly as for 2-3 weeks they had a Covid shutdown. No doubt it will come but not the stick to beat with here

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Every coach has to think about and live with the decisions over the intensity of their training, the speed of their press in matches. The quicker it is, the faster it is, the more potential there is for injury.
 

Interesting paragraph 

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2 hours ago, exAtyeoMax said:

I suppose I think it a bit strange that he’s not talking about his role at Sunderland. It’s the same information that is rehashed over and over, why aren’t they asking for his plans for his current club? If I was a Sunderland fan I’d be asking that. Is he really interested in our club? Or is it lazy journalism?

When did he give the interview ?

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6 minutes ago, spudski said:

I did mean that...gorilla fingers :laugh:

Which makes it even worse...he admits we went backwards. 

 

 

 

You couldn’t keep selling players like we did and expect to keep making progress in my opinion. 
LJ did well for us and i wish he had spoken out a bit more about having to sell all his best players constantly. 

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4 minutes ago, Rob k said:

You couldn’t keep selling players like we did and expect to keep making progress in my opinion. 
LJ did well for us and i wish he had spoken out a bit more about having to sell all his best players constantly. 

You do realise he was allowed to replace them handsomely... with players who were comparatively miles better at the same stage of their careers when they joined?

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13 minutes ago, Rob k said:

You couldn’t keep selling players like we did and expect to keep making progress in my opinion. 
LJ did well for us and i wish he had spoken out a bit more about having to sell all his best players constantly. 

That was integral part of why he was appointed.. His remit set out under SL’s  ‘sustainability’ plan. Previous managers - SC in particular failed to implement.

A ‘cake and eat it’ policy...................:cool2:

I wonder if Deano is under the remit?

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6 minutes ago, Fordy62 said:

You do realise he was allowed to replace them handsomely... with players who were comparatively miles better at the same stage of their careers when they joined?

Who did we replace Webster with? Who did we replace Pack with? Who did we replace Reid with? Brownhill? 
None of these players were replaced with better. 
 

 

Edited by Rob k
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4 minutes ago, Rob k said:

You couldn’t keep selling players like we did and expect to keep making progress in my opinion. 
LJ did well for us and i wish he had spoken out a bit more about having to sell all his best players constantly. 

Exactly how I see it too Rob. 

It's a flawed system. 

Regardless of what certain fans think of LJ, we bought and develop players, made them better and sold on for profit. 

The merry go round...is reliant on a great scouting and development system to work. If that fails...the chances are the Coach will struggle with the replacements. It's in constant transition.

I personally think our development side of things is good...to take young players, develop, loan out and get to top end Championship standard is a big ask. You look at some of those in the squad like Bakinson, Semenyo, Vyner etc....how many other Clubs in the Championship are competing with so many inexperienced at this level.

It's the recruitment side that has let us down imo...like you rightly point out with that list of players, none of them have been replaced properly of same quality.

As a side note to others...the interview was done before LJ signed for Sunderland. 

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2 minutes ago, exAtyeoMax said:

Don’t know, it was probably done over the phone recently, or it is the same as the one before with an extra paragraph at the end

Or it was done before he went to Sunderland...

Criticising LJ for not mentioning a club he hadn’t even joined yet is a new angle! 

Edited by And Its Smith
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2 hours ago, Silvio Dante said:

This was the big stretching of truth to me. From reading the article, if you didn’t know, you’d think we lost Kelly, Brownhill and Pack the summer after Man U and just got Webster in. The loss of Reid killed us that summer, it’d be better to focus on that

I think, to be fair, he’s been at Sunderland 6 games (P6 W3 D3) - 7 if you count Wigan on the day he took over. I’d struggle to see how he could do an in depth retrospective on coaching after that time, particularly as for 2-3 weeks they had a Covid shutdown. No doubt it will come but not the stick to beat with here

The interview isn’t really in-depth about his coaching though is it? It just covers a longer period of time and events. He could enthuse about what changes have been made to Sunderland since he’s been there and what plans they have

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1 hour ago, Rob k said:

You couldn’t keep selling players like we did and expect to keep making progress in my opinion. 
LJ did well for us and i wish he had spoken out a bit more about having to sell all his best players constantly. 

But you’ll know as well as anyone Rob, that if the recruitment team (and I don’t JUST mean Mark Ashton) was good they’d have recruited as well as the less high-tech recruitment team that took place under SoD and Cotts...albeit with Keith Burt’s keen eye.  SOD did some great stuff on a limited budget, whilst trying to get rid of the dead wood.  Cotts had the same total budget as SOD but had a bit of freedom, because the dead wood was gone.  But he too had to sell his top scorer to balance the books.  I always dislike the “Cotts just bought the best players in Lg1” claim.  He bought good players, but in the main he bought good, young players who could grow with the club.  He bought young as wages would be less too.  How many other managers in Lg1 at the time we bullying other sides in the transfer market and didn’t win the title....Preston, Swindon, Sheffield Utd (wasn’t until Wilder took over), MK Dons, etc.  It was a very competitive Lg1 in 14/15 looking back.

The worrying thing for me was the comment about 17/18 being his best shot.  It’s almost as if the breaking up of the Lg1 squad built by SOD and Cotts was an admission he couldn’t improve it.  I know that sounds churlish, but you’d think a bright manager like LJ would be able to use those funds and “go again”.

54 minutes ago, Fordy62 said:

You do realise he was allowed to replace them handsomely... with players who were comparatively miles better at the same stage of their careers when they joined?

...and for me that’s where it falls down.  Combination of mixed talent id together with a flaw in what system they are recruiting towards.  For me the blueprint had been set, 442-narrow, sum of the parts type stuff.  I’m not saying replacing Bryan, Reid and Flint was easy, but using a portion £20m+ gives you a good chance.

Eliasson and Walsh had been brought in during 17/18 as forward planning.  You could argue that Baker was too, with Flint up in the air about leaving.  In fact Baker and Wright / Hegeler started the 17/18 season.

In 18/19 he bought Webster, Weimann, Hunt....but also Watkins, Adelakun, Eisa then Dasilva followed by Kalas then Palmer on loan.

There was more than enough quality here, but the failure to define the system is one of the big issues imho.

48 minutes ago, Rob k said:

Who did we replace Webster with? Who did we replace Pack with? Who did we replace Reid with? Brownhill? 
None of these players were replaced with better. 
 

 

Webster, he didn’t, but he had Baker, Kalas (now perm), Wright, Moore (future proof signing from 16/17).  The fact that he then went back 3 left him short, but that’s where I think recruiting to a system fell over.

Pack - Nagy (future proofed by Massengo)

Reid - Weimann

Brownhill - Henriksen

Whether they are better is back to recruitment.  Selling Pack, a man you’d built the team and style around was stupid.  Again where was the planning?  Especially with Korey Smith injured.  Walsh, shouldn’t he be ready by last season.  Ideally Pack stays whilst Nagy and Massengo integrate.

I think when we do this type of exercise we fall into the trap of comparing players one to one....when you need to look at the other signings too.  O’Dowda has taken 3 years to put in some half-decent performances, Szmodics and Eisa, come and gone. Etc etc.  Wells signed but for what system.

43 minutes ago, spudski said:

Exactly how I see it too Rob. 

It's a flawed system. 

Regardless of what certain fans think of LJ, we bought and develop players, made them better and sold on for profit. 

The merry go round...is reliant on a great scouting and development system to work. If that fails...the chances are the Coach will struggle with the replacements. It's in constant transition.

I personally think our development side of things is good...to take young players, develop, loan out and get to top end Championship standard is a big ask. You look at some of those in the squad like Bakinson, Semenyo, Vyner etc....how many other Clubs in the Championship are competing with so many inexperienced at this level.

It's the recruitment side that has let us down imo...like you rightly point out with that list of players, none of them have been replaced properly of same quality.

As a side note to others...the interview was done before LJ signed for Sunderland. 

If the strategy is to take young players, develop them, then you use the money you get, that £20m+ in the summer of 18, together with a manager with his feet firmly under the table and secure was the opportunity to rinse and repeat, gradually improving the squad so that each player loss was felt less because succession planning was top-notch.  What happened was players bought and not played

Instead we went backwards, and it cost Lee his job.

I refuse to blame it all on Mark Ashton, even though I think he’s a key part of it.  Recruitment is a team, not just operationally headed up by him, but a team that comprises the football head coach and assistants too.

Lee always said he picked the team as if it was his daughters life at stake.  I totally believe he took that incredibly seriously.  But I’m not convinced that the sane applied with bringing players in, it has been scattergun and carefree imho.

Do I think Lee was a crap head-coach? Nope, but I think there were things he should’ve done better.  His part in the recruitment and its strategy being one of them.

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