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September 04, 2012



@ Chris. I disagree with you.

There is something very wrong with sounding like Danny Finkelstein.


OK, so here's the thing: What if there was a manager that knew organisational capital mattered more than personal talent.

What if that manager only took jobs at organisations that he knew could succeed. Over time this manager would be considered successful even though he knows his personal (lack of) talent doesn't reflect it.

Wouldn't that mean then, that where ever this manager/ equity analyst/minister took her next position, that position would be a successful one?

Account Deleted

To be fair to the LFC board, I don't think they expected Rogers to turn things around immediately. They clearly decided that the squad and coaching infrastructure need major surgery, after the Dalglish mis-step, hence their willingness to sanction the offloading of Carrol to WHU. Rogers is clearly frustrated that he is unable to bring in new, proven talent immediately (e.g. Dempsey).

This is where the analogy with cabinet reshuffles breaks down. While Cameron has no constraints on his ability to bring in new blood (albeit from the limited pool of Tory MPs), he cannot shunt Osborne off to the Welsh office. More's the pity.

While a new manager does not typically result in improved performance, there are inevitably exceptions to this rule. Some of this is down to increased variability (i.e. a gamble - see http://www.swan.ac.uk/economics/dpapers/2002/0203.pdf ), but anecdotal evidence (I'm thinking here of Eamonn Dunphy and more recently the Guardian's Secret Footballer) points to a more "revolutionary" scenario in which a team that has failed to adopt a new style under a new manager may improve short-term if a replacement manager allows them to revert to their preferred style of play. Chelsea last season would be a good example of this.

The real difference between football and politics, in this context, is that a seriously underperforming team is usually tackled from the head down, not by rejigging the reserves. Cameron looks more like Andre Villas-Boas that Brendan Rogers.

Tom Addison

A problem with regards to football managers is that their position, and whether they keep the job, is determined either by the fans, the owner/board or a combination of the two, and neither of these have sufficient knowledge or information to make this decision well.

For example, Liverpool (and therefore Brendan Rogers) may have had a bad first three games, but he could be doing all sorts of things behind the scenes that none of those precious Spirit of Shankly scouse prats will be able to see, measure or assess, and not only that, but even if they did have access to the necessary information, what does the common fan (or owner) know about youth academy organisation, training drills or setting up superb scouting networks?

I also assume that this is why managers are paid a lot less than the players. It's easier to assess who the best players are (although still not perfect).

Ned Pointsman

"scouse prats"

You vile, disgusting little man.

Tom Addison

LOL! So I'm vile and disgusting for calling members of the Spirit of Shankly group (who were caught singing Munich songs at their 2009 end of season do) "scouse prats"?

Heck, "scouse prats" is very, very tame in terms of banter, have you ever been to a football match?


@ Sid - I think such a manager would deserve his success; the ability to put round pegs into round holes is a big part of good management.
@ Tom - I wasn't judging Rodgers on his 1st 3 games - more on the organizational cock-up that left LFC without a striker and which spent £40m on Downing and Henderson and so had nowt left to spend on Dempsey. And managers aren't always paid less than players; Wenger earns more than any Arsenal player.

Tom Addison

"I wasn't judging Rodgers on his 1st 3 games". Didn't say you were. Too be honest I was just making my point regardless!

Cheers for the links to the articles regarding the effect of a new manager on team performance, I imagine I'll need them to calm down my fellow Man United fans when Fergie eventually retires or dies on the job (Eric forbid).

Wasn't aware that Wenger earns more than any Arsenal player. It may explain your inability to keep hold of your star players, but there's no denying Foreskin Face's pound-for-pound ability.


The real question is which members of the Cabinet are most alike to which players of Liverpool Football Club. George Osbourne has that slappable Suaraz quality; Hunt has the gormless appearance of Dirk Kuyt and Chris Grayling has the restrained thuggishness of Martin Skrtel...

Ken Houghton

Too bloody many UK soap opera references.

Especially since the US version of IMDB has no picture of Kym Marsh, but appears to indicate that she's only been on the show for seven years now, while the Ken barlow character has been around since three years before you were born.

Tom Addison

There's a football song about Ken Barlow you know....

Account Deleted

@Tom, if Wenger has a face like a foreskin, Ferguson surely has a face like a glans. All red and excited.

Tom Addison

*Walks to the pavilion having been stumped*

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