Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Football management, for dummies?

A while ago (for someone born with the 1980s on the horizon) a sheepskin coat, shades and a borderline criminal past were pre-requisites for 'pucker' top-tier football management material. 
Not so nowadays... 
Depending on what side of the fence you're on, there are either no personalities in football management any more, or too many to create a sense of a true stereotype. You can be a multi-lingual male model, a shell-suit sporting yokel, a ruddy-faced near-death experience or, as per above, someone sporting a sheepskin coat, shades and a borderline criminal past... (all of whom have managed a prem league team in the last 6 months). 
And seeing as footy is allowing any old clown to take up management, this season I decided to have a stab at it myself. I mean, has a marketer ever lifted the FA cup before (I think Drogba is a qualified accountant, mind)? Maybe now is the time...
The team is Mancunian Wave FC, playing in the Manchester Amateur Sunday Football League (www.masfl.co.uk). 
Now at first glance there would appear to be no point in trying to have a managerial personality in this league. After all, aren't the players simply either too hungover or hell-bent on attacking their opposite number to see such character? They say it's tough to appreciate a true touchline totem whilst sweating out last night's Bombardier.
Not so, I say.
During our latest defeat, something quite spectacular happened. The incident in question came around half an hour in: the game was evenly balanced at 0-0 when the opposition manager, following a verbal tit-for-tat with one of our central midfielders, dropped his shorts and got out his john thomas - holding it in his hand right there at the side of the pitch - giving it a wave (not a Mancunian wave) at one of our players. Proud as punch. Like a tribesman. In broad daylight. 
After that for them the goals started flowing and we lost 7-2.
Now I'm certainly not starting down that route in order to get our first points, especially with the imminent onset of winter. But it did get me thinking; maybe there is a place, and maybe an even a greater need, for personalities at this level. 
After all there's more ring-rust, weariness and fatigue to dislodge; a loathing of early Sunday starts to shake off. Those top teams in the Premier league can run themselves. It's the guys putting up their own nets who need a true leader!
So, for the sake of the team, I hope that going forward I've got the task in hand (which isn't a dig at last weeks' manager )...


  1. Are you saying that to improve as a manager and to motivate my team, I need to get by knob out more often?

  2. I know a few 'ruddy-faced near-death experience' managers. You could make a great cartoon off the back of this post.

  3. The cartoon might be a bit explicit...

  4. Ha, maybe give South Park a run for its money?!