SPORTSDESK COMMENT with Martin Dowey: What is wrong with British managers?

Sportsdesk Comment with Martin Dowey
Sportsdesk Comment with Martin Dowey

There seems to be a new fashion among clubs in this country’s top division when things aren’t working.

It has always been said that stability is the key to lasting success, yet that plan seems to have altered in the eyes of top flight chairmen.

The new mantra looks to be sack the gaffer and bring in a random foreigner.

West Brom have done it this year when getting rid of previous messiah Steve Clarke and appointing Pepe Mel.

Fulham also reacted when sacking Martin Jol, they swiftly snapped up Rene Meulensteen and look at the success he has had so far.

The masters of this are Spurs, who seem to have a black book full of these people.

When you cast your eyes back through the years they have recruited a string of average bosses from the continent including Christian Gross, Jacques Santini, Jol, Juande Ramos and of course Andre Villas Boas.

How much have these guys gleefully coined in through compensation?

I’m not saying that everyone should turn their attention to Gary Megson, Dave Bassett or Howard Wilkinson, but what is wrong with the British managers that end up untried on the scrap-heap?

It is also the same on the pitch.

Young English players never seem to be given a chance, the natural choice always seems to be to bring in somebody like David N’Gog.

I’m still scratching my head about Swansea signing him - maybe that was why Michael Laudrup was sacked.

Foreign managers are supposedly reknowned for showing their passion, but they still stand there like a rabbit in the headlights when things don’t go right.

Look at Fulham’s Meulensteen during his side’s defeat against Sheffield United in the FA Cup.

If you look around the top divisions in Europe, the percentage of home-grown managers is always massive.

Many also jump on a managerial merry-go-round in that country, with each having previously taken charge in a number of clubs.

In contrast, if a British boss has four or five top-flight clubs on his CV then he is looked at with dubious eyes.

West Brom’s new face Mel has been in charge of 10 teams in the past 14 years, yet he strolls unchallenged into the hot-seat.

Compare Mel to Sean Dyche or Eddie Howe, who have both stepped into the game and both are doing grand jobs at Burnley and Bournemouth respectively.

Also in the Championship, Derby’s fortunes have taken a huge up-turn since appointing Steve McClaren, while Leicester City are dominating the division with Nigel Pearson at the helm.

Both McClaren and Pearson have had mixed times over the years, but clearly they are not bad gaffers because of that.

Tony Pulis may be unfashionable, but he has produced a masterclass in hauling a terrible Premier League team in Crystal Palace to being on the verge of mid-table.

Spurs and Swansea bucked the trend when they promoted from within, but will Tim Sherwood and Garry Monk be in the role for the long-term?

Probably not.

Sherwood and Monk may not have the experience, but they are both passionate about their clubs as both have been long-term servants.

Will a Marcelo Bielsa, a Oscar Garcia or a Louis Van Gaal have the same passion if they are brought in?

Or will it just be another job to them?