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11 Jun 2015 02:08:27
Ed001 when you're around, I know it's a dodgy time there. What's your opinion on the academy? I personally feel there's a lot of potential in there at the minute, but the second they play everyone seems to heap a lot on them. For example last year it was sterling, then Ibe this year. I think we have good players coming through, but surely the expectation placed on them the second they start to make the first team is too much?
I look at United and Blackett as well, I think in time he will be good, but he's got too much expectation on him.
I'm basically asking do young English talent get too much asked of them at a young age, they seem to be expected to be superstars straight away, and if not they're labelled as a flop. Can't help but think this is a large part of why homegrown talent generally fails.

Qatar Red 1990

{Ed001's Note - neither Sterling nor Ibe are academy products mate, that is why they have the expectation heaped on them. When you are talented enough to be bought at the age they are, people expect a lot more. The media hypes up any player that has a good game, builds them right up so they can sell papers, get people to click on links to read about them. Then they can sell more knocking them down later.

It is not why English talent fails though. Homegrown talent fails because of three reasons, mainly. Firstly the coaching is not there, these young lads don't get to play on the streets all day like I did as a kid, out in all weathers kicking a ball around, so they need top quality coaching in the academies to improve their game. There simply aren't enough coaches, quantity and quality wise, in English football. So our players are not getting the coaching needed to improve their ability. They need more coaching sessions on an individual basis, which just doesn't happen. Glenn Hoddle's academy in Spain had a lot more coaches per player than a standard academy and took players deemed not good enough for youth set ups in England. Those players all made genuine improvements to their game.

Secondly it is the way, at young ages, we still have this idiotic notion that bigger, stronger, faster is what it is about. So the only players getting picked are the biggest lads, rather than the best players.

Finally it is simply a lack of real opportunities to develop their game through first team football. Managers lack the balls to give them a chance when their job is on the line. They do not want to spend their time developing talent, knowing that it will be a few years down the line before it pays off and they probably will not be there to benefit. That is why I am in favour of English clubs moving to the DoF model, to have someone above the manager who has a long term strategy in place and makes the manager give the talent a chance. At a young age they are inconsistent, so you have to accept bad days as well as good days, as we can see with Sterling, sometimes it can be hormone imbalances, growth spurts or simply just a lack of experience. A manager needs to have the bottle to stick with them and keep working with them to help them through it. Very few in England do so, which is why Dario Gradi has my utmost respect.}

1.) 11 Jun 2015 07:22:37
Ed I you say there are not enough coaches in the English game and I know the stats supports this but I'm told while on courses that coaches even with uefa band higher are out of work so tthat's not enough jobs ?

{Ed001's Note - it is both. We simply do not employ enough in England and there aren't enough top quality ones either. More people would qualify if there were more jobs available.}

2.) 11 Jun 2015 07:37:22
Ed - Glenn Hoddle's academy in Spain had a lot more coaches per player than a standard academy and took players deemed not good enough for youth set ups in England. Those players all made genuine improvements to their game. How is this measured please , any examples ?

So the only players getting picked are the biggest lads, rather than the best players. Sterling !

{Ed001's Note - what? Measured? What kind of dumb question is that? Clearly it is obvious how to measure the number of coaches and that the players were ones released by youth academies around England due to being below standard. Or did you mean the genuine improvements shown by the fact that a large number of them are now employed in professional football? Try making your question clear please.

That bit was badly worded, it should have said in a large number of cases the only players being picked, but don't be an arse please. Showing one exception does not make a case, as every rule has an exception.}

3.) 11 Jun 2015 07:52:26
Ed001, your points about quality coaching or the lack thereof, and the notion of bigger, stronger , faster resonates with me greatly, we have the same problem here in Australia. My son attended high school at one of the allegedly best high school football academies here. The coaches there were all about bigger, stronger, faster athletic types, and the genuine footballers with the technical ability, the football brain and smarts, the boys who could read a game well were more often than not left out of teams or they were riding the pine getting splinters in their backsides, while the big strong athletic players who could run fast played.

The three boys that were the best footballers, of which my son was one, now no longer play the game at a high level, while two of the boys they attended the academy with, made their debuts this year in the A League. One of them is a completely left sided player who couldn't pass the ball with his right foot not even five feet, but he is quick, and the other has next to no technical ability, but boy is he an athlete and he can run fast, so fast that he was the national age champion for the 100 meter dash. Neither of them are 'footballers', they are athletes that can kick a ball yet somehow managed to make their A League debuts. Its very disillusioning as a coach myself. The problem isn't confined to England, its here in Australia too.

{Ed001's Note - it is worse in Australia, you only have to look at their national team to see it is built on being stronger and more physically imposing than the opposition. Their whole game is built around bullying opponents, which might work well against weaker opponents, such as they get in the Asian competitions, but it will always struggle at the highest levels. That is why Tony Pulis never wins trophies.}

4.) 11 Jun 2015 08:08:40
ed i think your right about the coaches lacking quality and quantity, but you can't improve as a coach without the opportunity, so its a bit of a conundrum without getting the chance you can't learn and prove your quality, and on the scouting side of thing I've seen it myself over the last few years managing youth squads players you see with raw talent and skill potential getting overlooked for player who are more the on the athletic side. On a side note you mentioned spain and we must agree they seem to discover young gems a lot would you agree that because the likes of real madrid valencia barcelona etc all play their youths in teams that are competitive segunda leagues where age ain't a restriction that they come through with more experience and develop quicker.

{Ed001's Note - no, because if that was the difference young players would just come through from the lower leagues in England just the same. Most of the second string sides tend to be simply players who are not good enough for the main team, rather than youngsters.}

5.) 11 Jun 2015 09:27:07

I fully empathise with you re Australia and coaching = the "bigger, stronger , faster" problem has been the same for 50+ years, it was the same when my father played and it was the same when I played, and by the sounds of it nothing has changed!

If you were deemed "small" then you had to be outstanding technically just to get a look in, and even then they tended to opt for the "bigger" kids. I would say that coaching has improved regards teaching the technical aspects but it still has a mighty long way to go, and in truth I doubt it will ever reach the standard that is required.

For years I have maintained that for players from Australia to really excel/improve they need to come to Europe at an early age, worse case scenario at around 16 years of age. This sounds quite harsh (and I fully understand it is easier said then done), but what I believe happens is that up to 14 years or so Australian players are quite competitive, as a generalisation they hold their own, but after this the level of competition within Australia stagnates/plateaus, in short, they simply play against players of the same ability, and thus never improve, unlike their European counterparts.

As you are well aware football (soccer) is truly up against it in Australia, especially from a media perspective, whilst it's youth registrations far outweigh the other sports re growth and expansion, the media exposure/coverage the sport receives at senior level is bordering on disgusting . suppressed by "concerned" Rugby League faction and the powerful domineering Australian Rules magnates . which certainly doesn't help the sport.

Wishful thinking but not totally absurd, but wouldn't it be nice one day to see an Australian side with players that at least have the technical ability of the Japanese.

6.) 11 Jun 2015 09:50:24
Thought I'd throw in my 2 cents as an American. The problem we have here is a bit of a different one- the quality we have at U-14 or so and below is immense, sadly it evaporates quickly in high school as the best athletes turn to more popular sports (read that as the games the girls go to, like basketball or handegg).

I will say the technical ability of our youngsters is miles from where we were a decade ago and I'd guess we're maybe another decade or so from having a very good national side that can maybe challenge, so in that respect things are going relatively well though.

7.) 11 Jun 2015 11:11:54
Guru, as a coach here, when it came to the beginning of a new season and having to pick players for my team, I had many an argument with parents, other coaches, club coaching directors for not picking a player who was fast, big and athletic. None of them could ever grasp the concept that I wanted footballers in my teams, not athletes. If there was a big, fast tall player with technical ability of course I would select him, but without it I wouldn't.

I once had a boy who I managed to bring in from another club, who had all the attributes that I liked, he played as a striker on his other team, whereby his coach would play him up front, knock the ball over the top and he would run onto it and score a goal. The old kick and chase it coaching technique. When he came to my team I made him a CB to teach him how to read a game better. Everyone was against it, his parents whined and whinged but the boy actually appreciated it and could see what I was trying to do with him. All his parents saw was their kid no longer scoring a gazillion goals a season anymore.

8.) 11 Jun 2015 13:19:31
Great reading there eds but a couple of questions.

One were you have said that the managers "lack the balls" to play them, isn't that more down to the media, fans and owners putting pressure on them to succeed? Hense why they feel they can't afford to put them in?

Like how would everyone feel if we finishes the same this year or lower but had rossiter, brannagan, Sinclair etc in the team would the owners look at that and say well its because of the younger players or would it still be deemed a failure and our current team is full of kids and all the problems you have mentioned with there hormone inbalances etc yet Brendan has been ripped a new one, had a review, lost his backroom staff etc yet he is trying to achieve with kids and are expectations are he should be in the top 4 with kids.

And dof role works well if done were say they say your not getting a new player you cab use ibe from the academy per say then do they get extra understanding that ibe will need time and work and would expectations get lowers because instead of giving him that 20 mil pound man who could help he has been given a kid to develop?

{Ed001's Note - so that would be having the balls to stand up to the pressure then.}

9.) 11 Jun 2015 15:26:00
Stand up to pressure. They just ge sacked if they don't hit targets (although Brendan seems to have broken that mould for the time being - although we don't quite know what reasons were used to keep him, if it was the youth then hats of tp them for understanding that they can he an issure with incositencts etc)

But sorry eds if managers don't succeed they het sacked. Its bot about standing up to the pressure. It would be if he was told to play his older players and he went and played the kids because he believes in them and won stuff.

But playing rossiter, sinclar, branno and not achieving would jaut be him giving his job up because owners, fans and media don't look at it like some. They just see chelsea didn't get top 4 etc and don't loom into why.

I think if the owners said we don't mind fluctuations between 3rd-6/7th whilst the younger players gain experience and develop then great and I think a lot more would get there chances. But if a managers jib is on the line and he's trying to get into top four etc then no manager will play the kids. That's everywhere.

How many academy players under say 21 played more than 20+ games for any of the top nations league winning teams.

Psg, barce, Bayern, juventus, Chelsea even add in Celtic, psv, sporting (I think won the league or porto) - I'm not completely sure but if someone knows please let me know as I think it will be interesting.

Nkw there are some rules they can't have been sold and then bought back as they weren't developed in that team and they can't be older academy graduates like iniesta etc

I'm sure there won't be alot, apart from th lesser nations.

{Ed001's Note - sorry but that is just crap. The kids are good enough, the manager just needs to have the balls to give them a try instead of messing around playing players out of position. I am bored of this idiotic notion that just because a player is young he might not perform. Owen was at his peak at the age of 18.}

10.) 11 Jun 2015 20:28:29
Another poor post, maxi. EVERY club uses it`s youth players to some extent. Xavi, Iniesta, Muller, lahm, Alaba, Raul, Ramos navas and on and on and on were all given a chance by the coaches because they thought they were good enough. Xavi got his chance at 18 to learn from Pep and the examples are unending. What is it with you always thinking that it is no use playing youth just because they may not amount to something. how do you know they will amount to something or nothing if you don`t play them? if all the clubs on the planet thought like you, then we should just scrap the academy and FIFA should scrap the youth competitions because by your tortured logic, none of the great players who came out of thes will amount to anything. That is a defeatist attitude which BR IMO, has and you seem to be falling for it. You need courage to play the youngsters but there are ways to bring them through with the right plan in place because many other clubs dot even the big clubs, do it. How did real find Raul? You think he dropped from the sky? LFC has no plan and no direction and the failure in place is making it worse because he has the very thought process you have. The diff is, he is forever ready to take credit for their development after he has spent his time either trying to sell them like Flanno and Kelly (which he sold for a pittance) or sent out on loan like Ibe and Wisdom. Give it up, sir because your arguments make no sense

11.) 11 Jun 2015 20:32:51
Brazilian Ronaldo was thrown in at the deep end as an 18 year old, as was messi, aguero. If they are good enough then that's all that matters to me. I quote cesare Maldini who said once when asked about risking a young player for Italy - "I do not see an age when I look at a player, I see his talent"



28 May 2015 14:15:16
A hypothetical question for Ed001 and ed002 if you have time, as it's not exactly Liverpool related.
With everything going on with FIFA at the minute, would it be possible for a federation to break away from FIFA, and go it alone, and if so what would be the consequences?
And if say UEFA broke away, would it affect how the bigger clubs looking to form a breakaway league?
Sorry for the oddball question, but it's been bugging me and this is the only place I know with the knowledge for such questions.

Qatar Red 1990

{Ed002's Note - Breaking away is not going to be a practical consideration for UEFA as it does not have the infrastructure or support to do so in the short-to-medium term.}

The potential long-term impact in Europe will be discussed when a number of clubs meet at the end of August. There is a potential that one of probably three of those clubs could look to have an earlier meeting to discuss the way forward. It would not surprise me if they requested a meeting either over the weekend or early next week.}

1.) 28 May 2015 15:19:01
Thanks for the reply ed002. It worries me what is happening with football at the minute. Be interesting to see what comes about though, something has to change surely.

{Ed002's Note - Things will certainly change, but I would not worry about it impacting the game itself in particular - the issues are not directly football related.}




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01 Apr 2016 10:06:17
With the oil price etc still low I find it difficult to believe a consortium would be willing to dump a load of money into a financially fragile club such as ourselves, and if they are, then I would suggest they're more than likely bad business men. I would hope this isn't true, as I would expect it to match the Hicks and Gillet reign for the damage it will cause.

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10 Jun 2015 22:05:25
I hope he stays. He's one player I truly respect here, thinks he's quality.

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28 Apr 2015 14:23:12
I really hope so, would love to see Rossiter or Williams get a chance as well. There's nothing really to play for, so why not give the youngsters a game.

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09 Jan 2015 13:59:00
I personally can't see the point in bringing in Ochoa short term, I don't think he's any better than Migs so why waste the money.
Origi I haven't seen play at all this season, but apparently he's having a rough time at the minute, so it could benefit everyone to bring him in early, as it gives him extra time to adjust to us, if the fans give him any time.
Having said that about Ochoa though, I don't really see any good goalkeeping options available at the end of the season, the only player of a high enough standard and available would be Cech, and I can't see him moving to us. Have a feeling a lot of people will be disappointed over the next 2 transfer windows.

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06 Jul 2016 22:30:27
Cheers ed2. Never cease to amaze with your knowledge. To the point I only ever believe what you and ed001 say.
I think I speak for a lot of us when I say this site is a massive part for all of us, and thank you for doing it for free.
And thanks to the OP! For asking a genuinely interesting question, and not when Pogba, Lacazette and Dahoud will join us for £500 million.

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{Ed002's Note - Personally, I wouldn't believe anything Ed001 says.}



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05 Sep 2015 02:37:56
I've had a terrible day, and this has just brightened it! Knew there was a reason I always read here before bed!
Got some tape over the webcam now as well!

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{Ed001's Note - just don't forget your tinfoil hat, it makes it much easier for us to monitor your brainwaves.}



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02 Jun 2015 19:06:53
So is being said. But now we have move on and support the team. Let's hope Brendan can find it within himself to get us back into the top 4.
No point in crying now, let's be ready to cheer them out first game and see where we go from there.
Bloody painful writing that, but it is what it is. I'll give him the first 10 games to start to sway my opinion.

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28 May 2015 15:19:01
Thanks for the reply ed002. It worries me what is happening with football at the minute. Be interesting to see what comes about though, something has to change surely.

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{Ed002's Note - Things will certainly change, but I would not worry about it impacting the game itself in particular - the issues are not directly football related.}



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23 Mar 2015 11:42:39
I would choose De Boer as coach out of all the realistic options. Seems a solid coach, and works well with youngsters. It's the d.o.f position that worries me most. I don't see any out there that are suitable.
What's eds opinions on the dof? I know you've mentioned Cruyff, but that was in the same breathe as never going to happen.

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{Ed001's Note - I would go all out for Monchi I think now. He has been let down by Barca so should be attainable.}