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It's all about flashing lights and the socks !


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I don't buy The Sun paper, but someone pointed out an article that was in the rag yesterday - some interesting reading there



David Wagner’s Huddersfield thought outside the box to land Premier League place – now Bristol City have their own ideas

SunSport's EFL expert Tom Barclay hears how Robins boss Lee Johnson is taking 'insider' tips to help give his Championship high-fliers an edge

DAVID WAGNER’S arrival at Huddersfield was a prime example of a club thinking laterally to compete with parachute payment-funded rivals in the Championship.

There was no way Town would be able to go toe-to-toe financially with sides trousering multi-millions following relegation from the Premier League.

So they thought outside the box and brought in a left-field coach with a fresh set of ideas to change the whole ethos of the club — and it paid off magnificently.

Other sides are similarly seeking out original and alternative ways to bridge the gap to the second tier’s super wealthy.

Most interesting is the case of Bristol City — who employ a no-stone-unturned policy.

The Robins have an email address set up for any employee — be they a first-team player or a steward — to send in ideas to help improve the club, however small the tweak.

And it is not just staff from the football club who can pitch their suggestions.

Anyone who works for Bristol Sport — the umbrella company that has brought together Bristol City, Bristol Rugby, basketball side Bristol Flyers and more — are encouraged to contribute.

The proposals have included Reiki, the Japanese technique for stress reduction, Bikram yoga (which they have tried), cryotherapy, a futsal programme, dimming the lights as the players feel they are bit bright sometimes . . . the list goes on.

There has even been a shout to flash up a colour on the advertising hoardings around the pitch at certain times to signal to the team a change in gameplan.

It is straight out of the school of marginal gains, a technique British cycling coach Sir Dave Brailsford advocated, where you improve tiny percentages everywhere in the hope that is has a cumulative effect.

City chief Lee Johnson said: “The marginal gains are very important.

“It sets the culture, puts people in that progressive mindset and gives them a voice. I went to speak to our laundry girl Tracey.

“When I was here as a player, we used to get changed at the stadium, travel to the training ground and come back.

“She was a brilliant part of the environment.

“Now, poor Tracey, she’s on her own all day.

“I popped in to see her and asked if there was anything we could do to help.

“She said ‘of course not’ because she’s too nice but then you start delving and it turns out, 45 minutes a day extra, she spends pulling the players’ socks, shirts and pants inside out.

“So we did a presentation to tell the lads how Tracey has to spend 45 minutes a day doing this. Times that by 300 days a year.

“The lads did it straightaway. We haven’t had one sock the wrong way round!”

Johnson has to take enormous credit for this change of culture.

He could very easily have tossed it to the wayside during the hard times last year when the team lost eight in a row but he didn’t and is now reaping the rewards.

Players often cite the 36-year-old’s attention to detail when explaining his qualities — exemplified by his use of a gadget to measure the length of the pitch grass.

While the decision to convert Bobby Reid from a midfielder into a striker was a masterstroke.

Reid is only behind Wolves’ Leo Bonatini in the Championship scoring charts.

City have also had a host of guest speakers come in to talk to the squad, from sport psychologists to a Red Arrows officer.

It just adds to the marginal gains mindset which seems to be working wonders down at the super-modern Ashton Gate, now one of the most impressive Championship grounds following its £45million revamp.

Johnson added: “It’s just about educating the group, however small the issue.

“Aden Flint might score the winner and be the hero in the papers but the person that has given us the marginal gain has maybe helped just as much.”

Clearly it is working because that exact scenario happened this weekend in the 2-1 home win over Cardiff.

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18 minutes ago, RedRaw said:

"dimming the lights as the players feel they are bit bright sometimes" ..........yea, welcome to our world :disapointed2se:

I think turning the lights off in the stands will have an even greater effect as it will focus the eyes more on the pitch ratger than the brightly illuminated surroundings.

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23 hours ago, 1bristolcity said:

Oh Dear! :facepalm:

Based on just two (negative) words and a facepalm, it is somewhat difficult to judge your true feelings, but I get the feeling you are unimpressed with these innovative ideas.

Whilst, of course, it may be just a coincidence, and please feel free to expand on your initial profound post, do you not consider there has been progress this season, both on and off the pitch?



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