Tuesday 24 September 2013

What qualities do you want to see in a football manager?

I was listening to the BBC Scotland football phone in on Saturday night on the way home and was interested in an Aberdeen supporter praising Derek McInnes (not Adams!) for showing much more passion than his predecessors.  This, and the recent antics of a certain former Sunderland Manager has led me to think about the qualities I want to see in the manager of my team.  I'm not sure I do want to see obvious 'passion' on the touchline.  Too often that seems to end up being arm waving and incessant shouting.  A manager should be a leader too and that precludes, for me, some of the more outlandish behaviour we see week in week out on the touchlines up and down the country.  A leader should be able to accept 'challenging' decisions by officials and rise above inevitable playing rough and tumble during a game.  I prefer a manager who can look on dispassionately, analyse the match as it unfolds, act accordingly to revise tactics during play and at the interval and direct matters in the expectation that players will carry our their instructions, revised during the game or not.  I expect the manager to carry out thorough post match analysis and being able to explain to players where they went right and where they went wrong.  This will allow players to develop a better understanding of the issues they faced in the match and being able to do better the following week.  If they cannot do that then they don't have a future at their current level, whatever it might be, never mind any higher level.

Of course this is made all the more difficult when the manager is actually on the field throughout the game!   How do the manager and the captain interact on field during play?  What role does the Assistant manager/coach fulfil?  Have Accies got it right this season in this respect?  Time will tell, and that time may start with St Johnstone tomorrow night.  Good luck to all in the hoops.   

1 comment:

  1. I think the comments of Steve Bruce in the Herald referring to Di Canio getting the sack are interesting. " You cannot manage in the Premier League these days through a fear factor. You've got to be able to manage individuals. Man management has become more relevant in my experience than coaching." Given the very young nature of our squad then I agree man management is important but so is coaching as many of our players if not all are still developing. Add to that a tactical nuance and all three are required to make a really successful manager. Alex is clearly at the early stages of his management career and so far so good but it will be interesting to see his tactics over the next few months. For example our front two pairing seemed to have dried up in the last few games and we are relying on defenders and the midfield to score. How does alex address this and can he react during games if he thinks things are going wrong. I have no doubt he goes over the tape of our matches afterwards but I still think the role of manager and player is a difficult one to handle. And no I am not suggesting alex gives up playing. He is playing some of his most consistent football this season and that is recognised by opposition players and fans. I still think an experienced assistant on the sidelines would be of benefit this season but I suspect club finances rule this out. Even an experienced individual sitting in the stand and giving feedback might be helpful and perhaps Allan Maitland is doing this already?