Those who have seen the column this week will know I'm not a fan of Steve McLaren as England manager.It's hard to find someone in this country who is - I reckon even the FA might be having second thoughts about the decision.
Although listening to radio phone-ins such as Six-O-Six or TalkSPORT and there seem to be a lot of Boro fans who are happy, but that’s another story. But I am not a fan of Allardyce or Curbishley as potential England managers and the rhetoric in favour of Big Sam is just an indication of what’s wrong with the game in this country.
What are his attributes?
It’s said he is doing well with limited resources, his team plays with passion, and he gets the best out of players who won’t play for anyone else despite their talent. Most of this is true, but is that enough to be England manager? Of course isn’t.
We didn’t win the last two World Cups – which we could and should have done – because of a lack of passion, We lost it because we weren’t, and aren’t, good enough.
What Eriksson failed to do, and what McLaren is also failing to do, is create a team. We all harp back to 1966, and what people fail to realise is that was a team which dovetailed together, not a collection of the best players in each position, which the present managers keep doing.
Alf Ramsey dropped the best goalscorer in the World, arguably the best British goalscorer of all-time (Jimmy Greaves) and replaced him with an above average player (Geoff Hurst) and the rest is history.
Would Allardyce be big enough to drop Lampard or Gerrard or both? I doubt it. But that is what needs to happen. He wouldn’t drop them if it matters because he’s scared of what the press would say.
Of course we will never know about Allardyce or Curbishley is they don’t get the chance, but I don’t think it is the kind of job where you give people chances.
For me it’s as important as being Prime Minister. My vote for England manager would have been either Martin O’Neill (but I think he may lack a little tactical knowledge at the highest level), but preference would have Guus Hiddink.
He’s more than capable of making tough decisions, ignoring the press and creating a real team with the right players in the right positions. If we don’t make the tough decisions, we’ll still be talking about winning the World Cup in 2066.
Lawrence Gosling is a consultant to Incisive Media (publisher of IFAonline).IFAonline
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