England and soccer management


Apparently Roy Hodgson is the right man for the England manager’s job. He is paid an estimated £3 million plus, and is eligible for various bonuses, making him one of the best paid national managers. The FA did not stint in their cash or verbal support for their man.

In his last four managerial posts his teams have struggled to win enough games. Finland won 27% of their matches under him, Fulham 39%, Liverpool 42% and West Brom 37%. He collected no silverware during  any of those assignments.

The manager’s role includes selection of squad players and of teams, training of squad players, and leading the team on their formation and tactics for each match.  Clearly things have gone wrong in each of these areas in Brazil, with many armchair pundits having their own views on which were the worst errors.

The less well paid Uruguay manager worked out how to inspire or allow Senor Suarez to show his aggression in running into space, his skill at controlling the ball and his devastating ability to shoot when in range. Senor Suarez has not been the easiest player for the Liverpool manager to manage. Mr Hodgson did not have the same success with his chosen celebrity player, Mr Rooney.

I would be interested in your views on whether Mr Hodgson is the right man for the job. I would also be interested to hear your thoughts on his remuneration. I fully understand the idea of paying the England manager multi million bonuses if the team wins lots of games and gets into the more advanced rounds of the World Cup. Had England done so then there would be big increases in fan base, shirt and memorabilia sales revenue and tv audience for the English and domestic league  games.

I wonder what would happen if the FA said an England manager should have a basic around 10% of the £3m figure mentioned in the press with  most of his possible  pay performance driven. This would still leave the manager well paid earning many times the average fan’s income with no money worries to divert him from doing everything needed to get England into winning ways. It would give him every incentive  to win the big bonuses that would then be justified as milestones were achieved.

The winning English rugby team that lifted the World Cup considered so many things that could add the extra bit to performance. They had an eye coach, who apparently told them their eye muscles were the most important muscles they had. They needed to train them to see the game position, find the space to run and kick into, and see their support players. The English soccer team need great ball control skills, need to read the game and create space just like the rugby players. Winning is about  detail and dedication. It is about practicing for the opportunities and circumstances that a game may create.


  1. Lifelogic
    June 22, 2014

    Managing a club side is very different from managing England. For a club side you need the money to buy the best players and then they get lost of time to play together. With England you get the best English players but have little time to blend them into a team.

    I suspect the England team would do just as well with a manager on £150,000. Statistics on clubs that change managers after a poor run do not seem to suggest the manager has that much influence at all. Though you get the usual reversion to the mean as you would expect.

    Pay is an interesting subject, in football/spot you only have 11 on the pitch so you want the best player you cannot replace Senor Suarez with three players perhaps 90% as good but 10% of the cost. With the manager you can. A similar argument applies to Actors, musicians etc. you either have the famous Actor or you do not.

    Managers at business are often hugely overpaid for no reason and could be better replaced by several far cheaper people. Many get paid a fortune for destroying companies and robbing shareholders.

    30 people chosen at random (perhaps on no pay at all) would make/have made far better decisions on Blairs wars, the Millenium dome, Libya, the expensive green crap energy, the climate change act, HS2, selective immigration, payment to augment the feckless, tax levels, law and order and countless other things – than serial governments have managed.

    1. JoeSoap
      June 22, 2014

      The main component for success seems to be having ability, ambition and a passion for what you’re doing.
      Business people starting up have no guarantee of large wealth, but normally achieve it through an appropriate mix of these three.
      We have a problem in the public sector and politics because folk often have a lot of ambition for themselves, but their main ability is PR and networking, which helps them but not the organisation or country they’re running. The England Manager probably does have the passion and ambition, and isn’t a PR crony.
      I think he got a bit unlucky with a hotch-potch of players, which was all that was realistically available to him.
      On a broader level, do we have a sufficiently competitive and nationalistic environment in England? No, probably not.

      1. Hope
        June 22, 2014

        With the second highest number of politicians in the world, second only to China, why is the UK in such a mess with so many experts, many of whom educated at Oxbridge ? Why is corruption still so rife? And why are the politicians unable to consistently tell the truth? They talk a good game but fail to deliver, similar to Hodgson. Losing us taxpayers about £3,000 a second Hodgson suddenly looks cheap.

  2. Mike Stallard
    June 22, 2014

    I am just starting “Who runs Britain” by Robert Peston the stuttery little man on BBC who got the heave ho just recently.
    He makes the point that money brings power. Power over political parties…
    Power for you children and successors…

    1. Lifelogic
      June 22, 2014

      Robert Preston seems to be, like most TV people today, far more concerned about the tone of this irritating voice, his outfits and his pregnant pauses than what he actually says. What he says is the usual “BBC think”, self contradictory nonsense I find.

      Where do the BBC get this endless stream of lefties for their debate programs like Any Questions and Question Time? This week we had Lindsey German saying housing benefit payment to provide housing for the poor went to “Greedy Landlords” what a compete twit. The Landlord have to buy, service, insure, maintain and provide the property – it is the tenants that get the real benefit of somewhere to live. If I sell or rent something I usually charge the market rate what does she do give it away? If you do give it away you get 100 in the queue so 99 are still disappointed.

      The BBC panels usually start with three Lib/Lab/Con politicians nearly always lefties (certainly so if Cameron’s ministers), then augment them with a irrational lefty “thinkers” like Billy Bragg, Polly Toynbee, Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, Owen Jones, Lindsey German, lefty feminists, lefty pop stars, other BBC presenters ….. all with the usual magic money tree economics, pro EU, ever higher taxes, ever more regulation, big government knows best, green crap arty drivel.

      It is only once in a blue moon we get someone with sensible, rational views to the right – David Starkie, Norman Tebbit and James Delingpole types. Even when we do they are shouted down by the other three or four lefties plus the chair.

    2. Jerry
      June 22, 2014

      @Mike Stallard: “I am just starting “Who runs Britain” by Robert Peston the stuttery little man on BBC who got the heave ho just recently”

      You might like to tell both the BBC and Mr Peston that!

      Mike, don’t let your dislike for him get in the way of the facts, he actually got promoted (of sorts) last October, becoming the BBC’s Economics Editor, actually holding both Business & Economics Editorships until March this year when the new Business editor took up their post.

  3. Roger Farmer
    June 22, 2014

    We have an estimated 500 home grown jihadists in Syria and Iraq creating mayhem, not to mention all the other murderous chaos their brothers in Islam are creating around the World, and all you have to chat about is football.
    To coin a phrase, get your eye on the ball and start discussing how we handle this obscenity originating in the UK.

    1. ian wragg
      June 22, 2014

      Why would politicians discuss the threat from extremists within Britain, mainly England. They have spent at least 30 years indulging them. Still we continue to import them from the Sub Continent either legally or otherwise.
      parts of England are under Sharia law and the politicians and police have no guts to do anything about it.
      Football is the modern equivalent of the Roman bread and circus mentality.
      If you expect grown up debate from the LibLabCON you are seriously deluded.

      Reply All Of England is under EU and English law, not under Shariah. I choose a wide range of topics and cannot always be discussing the one thing you want to be talk about.

      1. ian wragg
        June 22, 2014

        You obviously don’t work in Yorkshire or go to Tower Hamlets.

        1. Hope
          June 22, 2014

          Cameron just introduced Sharia bonds, hear the slippery sope gets Cameron support and backing. It stems from Sharia law. Therefore not quite correct JR.

      2. A different Simon
        June 22, 2014

        The Islamist’s are being set up to take the fall .

        Of course it won’t be the trouble makers who actually take it but what else is new .

    2. JoeSoap
      June 22, 2014

      Enough posters on here have stated the absolutely screaming obvious
      It would be good to see some backing for that stance from those in Parliament, rather than mealy mouthing around yet another issue.

      1. Anonymous
        June 22, 2014

        Ah. Dare support UKIP though. See how you get slapped around and insulted then !

    3. Lifelogic
      June 22, 2014

      Well, certainly not by more or indeed any religion in schools that would be bonkers. But is of course government policy.

    4. John E
      June 22, 2014

      Quite right. It seems politicians can’t resist the opportunity to chase after a scapegoat.

    5. Iain Moore
      June 22, 2014

      We seem to have a dance of the Prozac addicts, where the British establishment all wander around in a daze, unable to connect with reality, not just on the jihadists , but every problem our country faces is met with inconsequential actions.

      On the jihdists the action we need to take is very clear, other than to our brain addled establishment.

      ISIS has boasted about the war crimes they have committed, IED’s, suicide bombers, beheadings, crucifixions, shootings. etc. THESE ARE WAR CRIMES. As such any British person who has gone to fight with them should be considered to be guilty of war crimes. Even if they claim not to have been part of the human rights abuses, by the very act of being part of ISIS , by the legal definition of ‘joint enterprise’ they should be considered as guilty of wielding the sword , shooting someone in the back of a head, or laying IEDs as the person who has done it.

      Instead of having this wishy washy clueless Government where everything is a grey area, and getting this wow is me what shall we do? They should make it very clear that anybody who comes back here and is found to have associated themselves with ISIS, will be considered a war criminal, and charged as such.

      Drawing this line in the sand, may deter wannabe jihadists from going. Those that have gone, will know very clearly what faces them if they come back. And those that have slipped back in will be forced to find a rock to hide under lest they get convicted of being a war criminal and never seeing the light of day ever again.

    6. Anonymous
      June 22, 2014

      Roger – The post on football is pertinent to your concerns.

      The mass migration policies which have gifted us our jihadis (and seen us all subject to stifling security, frisking and loss of freedoms) are deemed worth it because ‘it makes our country richer more competitive. ‘

      So where is our world beating football team ?

      (To say nothing of our economic bankruptcy to the point that we are now selling ourselves to the Chinese.)

      1. A different Simon
        June 22, 2014

        Anonymous ;

        “(and seen us all subject to stifling security, frisking and loss of freedoms) ”

        Do you really think they would stop surveiling you even if there was no terrorist threat ?

        Just another fabricated crisis which will be used to reduce our freedoms still further .

  4. A.Sedgwick
    June 22, 2014

    For me the job of England manager is essentially part time and should be regarded as such by the FA. It is handsomely paid and if linked to time with the players it becomes one of the best paid in the country. Mr. Hodgson, as you show, is not in the top echelon of managers, he is a middle of the road character and clearly a very affable one, probably far too nice for the job. Whether a top manager would want or be allowed to do two jobs is doubtful, but there are better floaters e.g. Klinsman, O’Neill, Magath.

  5. Old Albion
    June 22, 2014

    When i saw the report suggesting Roy Hodgson was earning in excess of £3m/yr i was somewhat surprised. But should i be? Football at the top levels throughout Europe is now awash with money.
    Is Roy the man for the job?
    Well, he is a quiet non-controversial man. The FA like that.
    The players ‘appear’ to like him.
    Constant managerial change has not improved England’s fortunes.
    His overall football record as shown by you is far fom great.
    So on balance i think he should stay and see his contract out.

  6. Gary
    June 22, 2014

    You make good points. However, Capello did have a steller record wherever he went over decades, and he was almost as bad with England as Hodgeson. There may be an uncomfortable truth beneath that.

  7. Andyvan
    June 22, 2014

    Given his record of well paid catastrophic failure Mr Hodgson is well placed to move onto quango land. Perhaps he could take over the Environment Agency? Failing that I’m sure there’s a spot for him in the HS2 management team.

  8. Denis Cooper
    June 22, 2014

    I have little interest in football, JR, but I will pick you up on one supposition: that with a basic salary of £300k pa the manager would have “no money worries to divert him”. One might think so, but it doesn’t always work that, does it? Somebody who was careless and extravagant could end up with money worries however much they were getting in, indeed isn’t that where Gordon Brown went wrong?

  9. Leslie Singleton
    June 22, 2014

    It’s a bit like weightlifting which is an unfair sport because strong blokes have an advantage: what passes for analysis and the Manager’s role leave me cold: other countries are better at football that’s all and BTW practising with an s please.

  10. JoeSoap
    June 22, 2014

    The manager is just one component albeit a very important one.

    It is a good point though – why pay £3million basic salary? It is the type of job that an established manager near the end of his career should take at a fraction of that, with incentives for success. It should be an honour as much as a paid job.
    The big question is:
    Did they ask Harry?
    Would he have done better?

  11. margaret brandreth-j
    June 22, 2014

    Will have to pass on this one.

  12. Freeborn John
    June 22, 2014

    Manchester United had a 5-year contract with David Moyes but including a clause that they could terminate it without further recompense to Moyes if performance fell below a certain level, I.e. failing to qualify for the Champions League. I think the same should apply to the national manager. The question would be what should the threshold for early termination of the national manager’s contract. Many would say that failure to qualify for the World Cup would warrant termination but failure to progress beyond the group stage with the quality of players currently available is probably ‘par for the course’. I would suggest though the ‘base’ component of his salary should be much lower set with a high ‘bonus’ for exceeding par. The base should be lower than a premier league coach such that the coach who takes up the position is clearly motivated by the prospect of winning a major tournament.

    1. Denis Cooper
      June 22, 2014

      “Manchester United had a 5-year contract with David Moyes but including a clause that they could terminate it without further recompense to Moyes if performance fell below a certain level …”

      That’s the kind of contract we need with each of our MPs, with his constituents alone deciding whether the performance of their MP was so unsatisfactory that the early termination clause should be activated.

  13. Bryan
    June 22, 2014

    I do not think Mr Hodgson is the highest paid England manager of recent times but he certainly has the worst track record, albeit with much experience at the senior level.

    His appointment was a surprise as Mr Redknap was the popular favourite. But a jack-the-lad, like Terry Venables, was not on the FA radar.

    Mr Hodgson’s reputation is for defensive football, a draw is better than a loss. He is out of his comfort zone playing an attacking strategy as in Brazil. In fact his strategy seems to have been – get at ’em and lets hope. Fine if you have a plan B or even C which you can change to on the fly. Clough, Ferguson, Morinho spring to mind; all extremely successful.

    We are stuck with him now so should support him. He does need however to get rid of the fixation that Rooney is a still a world beater and therefore the team has to be organised around him or even to accommodate him. In defence Mr Hodgson will cite stats which show Mr Rooney ran more than any other England player. But it is not the running which is important but the outcome of that running! Blue -a* fly springs to mind!

    Other teams lay plans to thwart players like Messi, Pirlo, Ronaldo, Suarez etc but not I fear Rooney, or any other member of the England squad.

    Simply – we are not good enough and have not been for yonks.

    Paying a manager £3m+ a year or even £15K will make no difference at all.

  14. Brian Tomkinson
    June 22, 2014

    Hodgson appointed a sports psychologist for his England team whilst applying his own brand of motivational psychology to inspire Luis Suarez by suggesting he wasn’t yet world class.

  15. Max Dunbar
    June 22, 2014

    Not footie talk again! ‘Dribbling’ while Rome burns.

    Reply I have posted three times in the last 8 days on Iraq, Middle Eastern religious wars and British values! We do need some variety and to follow other news items as well.

    1. Max Dunbar
      June 22, 2014

      Reply to reply: But you haven’t mentioned the Kardashians once.

  16. Cliff. Wokingham
    June 22, 2014

    I am always amused by our nation and our media in relation to our national team.
    Every big competition the nation’s hopes and expectations are raised and our team always fails. This world cup has been no exception.

    Although we have, arguably, the best league in the world, we have too few English players in the top teams. This could be because our lads can’t play to the level required to make the premiership squads or because it is cheaper to buy in overseas talent, or a combination of both of these factors.

    I am not really a keen football fan to be honest but, I do feel the England team has played better football recently and with the number of young players in the squad, perhaps the future looks a little brighter but, I’m afraid I won’t lose any sleep should the cycle of big build up and disappointing failure continues: I feel there are far more important issues to worry about. Perhaps, as we go kicking and screaming more towards a federal EUSSR, ( sorry Jerry:-)) we’ll see a United States of Europe team in future world cups; If the USA can do it, why not Europe? Mind you, it will have to reflect the make up of the nations so, half the players will be female, sixty percent over weight etc:-) but I’m sure the BBC and the socialists in Brussels will love it:-)

    Regarding Roy’s pay; I get tired of people worrying about what others are paid. Boo hoo hoo, he’s getting more than me take it off him! The pay is high but, good luck to him, I’m not paying for it, however when I am paying the salary, as in the case of the state’s broadcaster, I do get a bit fed up, but with The BBC, we have no choice, we are forced to pay it with all kinds of threats and sanctions if we don’t…. If I didn’t like what, say Sky or any other company was doing, I just wouldn’t buy their products, with the BBC I can’t do that and thus, they send hundreds of staff over to Brazil at great expense and we all have to grin and bear it and pay for the privilege.

  17. formula57
    June 22, 2014

    The England football manger job is akin to that of Prime Minister in that there is virtually no-one in the country who does not know how to do it properly except for whomsoever is the incumbent pro tem.

    As for pay, it reflects the market for managers in the premier league, itself a function of the large amounts of TV and sponsorship money poured into football – and it has to be spent somehow. Performance-related pay is problematic as successful performance is elusive anyway and it must be doubted there are actions and motivations that would arise from its introduction that are not forthcoming without it.

    In recent memory England has changed manager on numerous occasions, even opting to appoint other than Englishmen in its efforts to find the most suited, and none has made much difference. It is not easy to imagine that replacing Mr. Hodgson is going to make any material difference expect that the plans he is supposedly implementing for future development would then, presumably, be scrapped – only for some successor’s plans to be scrapped in turn as replacing the manager in the face of a lack of success is once again favoured.

    The failures of England at international football likely run deep and are complex. The FA is at fault but it has shown beyond doubt it is an inept organization incapable of reforming itself in any worthwhile manner. Appoint Mr. Dyke as its chief executive, whose tenure at the BBC ended in catastrophic failure, is emblematic of its approach. Yet maybe its current plans will, at long last, lay the ground for some success eventually by the team at international level. Who knows – perhaps instead we should just retire from international football to avoid further disappointment.

  18. Bert Young
    June 22, 2014

    To appoint anyone to a job without the right credentials is a mistake . I had no knowledge of Hodgson’s record until your blog today ; obviously it was wrong to have him as England’s Manager . The remuneration paid to footballers and to football bosses is out of all proportion to basic values ; it is symbolic to football mania and the hyping up of the media . I am and have always been a rugby fan ; recent events convince me to continue !

  19. Eddie Hill
    June 22, 2014

    That salary is an obscenity, but you can’t pay a man £150k p.a. to manage blokes on £300k per week (£15 mllion pa!) – his salary alone would diminish his authority.

    Trouble is, people think that paying (someone ed) £ 3 million p.a. makes him a genius.

    Do the math.

    The FA and the clubs should be spending money devloping young English players rather than paying utterly ridiculous sums of money to (men with modest records? ed) like Roy Hodgson.

  20. Anonymous
    June 22, 2014

    I don’t understand why a rich Englishman needs to be paid very much at all for the privilege and opportunity of representing his country and fulfilling the dreams of ALL football fans who’d supported the industry which gave him such wealth.

    Imagine say, Harry Rednap offering to manage England and giving all of his salary going to youth teams in deprived areas.

    Ordinary people are giving so much of their time for nothing in youth football. Without them the Premier league would be denied most of its players.

    What a hero he would be. Win or lose !

  21. Brigham
    June 22, 2014

    We haven’t had a decent England manager since Brian Clough. I believe he was replaced because he criticised the FA hierarchy. Good managers would not take the England job because the availability of world class players is practically non existent. I’m only thankful that Wenger said no.

    1. Bryan
      June 22, 2014

      I do not think Mr Clough ever managed England. That he was never appointed because he was outspoken and the peoples’ favourite shows that the FA have learned nothing over the years.

      1. Brigham
        June 23, 2014

        Of course you are right. Brian Clough criticised the FA when he was playing for England. He was swiftly dropped even ‘though he played very well.

  22. A different Simon
    June 22, 2014

    The results were no better than expected but I was proud of the way the team played .

    Erickson and Capello are proven winners yet the quality of the football and desire under Hodgson is significantly improved .

    The win rates at Fulham and West Brom are very good given the lack of resources at his disposal – Fulham were relegated this year and West Brom were only one place clear of the bin .

    Rooney looked to have lost his hunger under the previous encumbents but has got it back under Hodgson’s man management .

    Rooney is England’s best player since Paul Gascoigne 20-24 years ago and the only player capable of changing a big game and even he is not as effective as Suarez , Bale , C. Ronaldo , Messi .

    A true genius like Maradona can win the whole tournament single handedly .

    Football success has always been about budgets even back before the 1960’s . Club’s like Athletico Madrid are finally pioneering an approach to winning without the big players .

    With the A.M. approach England are about 5 players short of being competitive .

    English football needs to have that 2 week break in the Winter for players bodies to recover as the current long unbroken season leads to too much physical deterioration .

    On remuneration , this is a national side so the spirit of public service should come into it .

    However , I am not sure whether the spirit of public service exists for senior staff as some councils are paying their “chief executives” over £350k/year plus bonuses plus pensions .

    Given that there is only one manager’s job available for each country I think it would be too restrictive to extend the restriction that a player can only play for one national team to managers .

    Harry Redknap would be my choice or perhaps a recall of Glenn Hoddle .

  23. Lindsay McDougall
    June 22, 2014

    I like your idea of a performance driven remuneration package, provided that FIFA would allow it. You may well ask whether FIFA should have the right to review anybody’s financial practices, given their own track record. However, there is a precedent. The EC audits the budgets of Member States, even though its own accounts have not been signed off for 20 years. And recently the IMF has been lending at below market rates to financially challenged countries such as Greece.

    Finland, Fulham and West Brom are not silverware material. Liverpool are potentially so now, but not when Roy Hodgson was manager.

    England have been tactically naive defensively. Centre backs Jagielka and Cahill are no more than adequate at international level and full backs Johnson and Baines are ultra attacking overlapping players who don’t always get back in time to tackle. With that sort of back four, you need hard tackling midfield holding players, and Henderson and Gerrard do not fit the bill. Baines gets much better cover from Sylvain Distin and Gareth Barry when he plays for Everton.

    The two teams with hard tacking, youthful, midfield ball winners have been Costa Rica and Uruguay. Europeans used to be good at that sort of thing. Rooney said something wise at his press conference. Uruguay frequently fouled England in order to slow the game down, because a fast tempo suited England. As Rooney said, maybe we”re a bit too nice. That doesn’t apply only on the soccer field.

  24. JonV
    June 22, 2014

    We have a culture in this country of paying people the highest salaries in the world and then getting some of the most useless people in return. I don’t know if the FA is part of the public sector but they certainly seem to share the same appetite for paying eye watering salaries for lacklustre performance. It’s the same in the NHS, all the Quangoes, fake charities, local government, TFL etc etc etc where middle and upper management are paid the highest salaries in the world for underwhelming results.

    Remember George Osbourne saying he would ask all the overpaid jobsworths who earn more than the Prime Minister to justify their existence? I don’t think it ever happened and there are even more of them now. Boris alone pays some of the most obscene salaries in the country to people who supervise the buses and trains in London. £785,000 is the highest I have seen. Just like Labour they love spraying our money around to their friends. I imagine the FA is much the same.

  25. Stevie
    June 22, 2014

    Mr Redwood If Scotland vote to leave the United Kingdom will all Scots working but not living in England need a visa to work here, likewise if the United Kingdom vote to leave the EC will all persons of other nationalities require a permit to work and stay in the then devolved UK. I watched with interest the debate from Committee Room 15 which you and others took part on Public Administration on 17th June. To my reasoning it is very unfair that a Minister may fall from government due to the fault of the public servants whom supposedly serve him yet he has no direct control over them, surely it would be a better arrangement it the Minister could select and dismiss civil servants under him if they fail to carry out his requests, this works very well in private practice. How can the Cabinet Secretary refuse to divulge information required by the Government of the day.

    Reply Both these issues would fall to be negotiated between the successor countries, or could be decided by the UK Parliament setting a new migration policy on exit from the EU.

  26. Edward.
    June 22, 2014

    Tactics are rather dependent on the calibre of the playing staff, England really have one or two rather decent young players but we are saddled with a coach who was not and still is not sure of what he would like his team to do on the pitch.

    Mr. Jose Mourinho, of the Fulham road, gets the best out of his players and demands unswerving loyalty, his tactics are simple – play harder and faster than the opposition, though he pays very close attention to detail, where the faults of opposing players are concerned.

    As players roll up for England duty and in direct contradiction of their Rugby Union counterparts – as one Harry Redknapp has intimated – some England players would rather be anywhere else but pulling on a shirt for their country. Blame the clubs, the agents, blame the education system but Uruguay were ready to die for the sky blue shirt. Whereas, England – if one can judge by Jagielka’s half smiling shrugs – the same is not true of England players and if you ain’t all fired up – you’re half way to being beaten before you step out on the pitch.
    And you can’t blame the manager for that.

  27. English Pensioner
    June 22, 2014

    I believe the problem is that we don’t have a team, simply a collection of self-important individuals (the same could be said about Cameron’s cabinet!).
    You can’t make a team by bringing together a group of footballers who’ve never played together before, just have the odd practice match and then hope for the best, they need to have lots of practice and know how all team members react in various situations. It’s not helped by the personality cult (eg “man of the match”) which, as any personnel manager will tell you, completely destroys united team efforts.

  28. Mike P
    June 22, 2014

    The England manager’s job is now all but impossible so anyone of any real quality (not Roy Hodgson) would give it a wide birth. This is why:
    – our Premier League is probably the most lucrative and successful league in the world. This starves English clubs of home grown talent in favour of overseas players
    – in turn they go back into their U18 and U21 squads so are well known to each other when the senior internationals come along
    – when we won in 1966, Alf Ramsey had the good sense to put three players from West Ham up front who all knew instinctively how to play with each other and the rest is history
    – incidentally they played in England’s colours – Red – rather than some UK apology of a kit choice, white with navy or white shorts and blue numbers. I believe we’ve done rather well whenever we’ve played in red. We’re hopeless in white. Anyway …
    – if we wanted 3 or 4 English players from the same leading premier league club (a) we wouldn’t get them for practice, their manager would find reasons for not releasing them, and (b) they wouldn’t exist in the first place as there are too many overseas players
    – as we’re seeing they get too much stick when they come back after a failed campaign so you have to ask why would you agree to be a part of that when you’re (very very) comfortably off in the Premier League. The honour of being selected doesn’t seem to feature much as it did years ago.
    – as for remuneration, we have to compete with packages in place for other country positions I guess so that would leave us disadvantaged with a low basic and payment by results. good idea though.

  29. Richard Cooke
    June 23, 2014

    Good to see that John has such a keen interest and knowledge of football. He obviously knows what the electorate are thinking about and how to get their interest. He should be PM.

  30. Hefner
    June 23, 2014

    For a small instant, I thought that Mr Redwood was addressing the problem of not so successful or even dreadful CEOs. Silly me!

  31. David
    June 23, 2014

    I think blaming the manager is a mistake.
    Looking at other things like a winter break, how to get more summer born people in the premiership etc are a far better idea.

  32. Robert Taggart
    June 24, 2014

    Keep ‘Woy’ Hodgson – no England Manager has ever done better – at calming down expectations for the ‘team’ !
    Footy be but a game – to Moi. Alas, Footy be a religion to the more simple folk amongst us – but their prayers are still not answered !!

    Time to ditch those Three ‘Lions’ ? – they put the fear into none of our opponents. Alas, like those who bear them on their shirts – they be nothing more than pampered pussy cats !!!

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