Written by Dan Anjos
The English managerial job is one of the best jobs any manager can have on their CV. The history between England and football is one of the richest around. England even have a World Cup in 1966 to their name when they hosted the most respected tournament in football. England has one of the best leagues in the world and most definitely the most competitive professional football pyramid from the Premier League to League Two. Even financially the FA pays a lot in comparison to other football federations/associations. However in the last decade it has not been one of the best for the national team. So whoever comes in, what will they face?
First of all, the English press. Arguably it is any managers most feared nightmare because of the way it is so critical when they play bad but when they play well it builds them up to be the next best thing. A lot of foreign managers come in and complain about the press due to the way it behaves. The press will definitely be a huge stumbling block for whoever comes in, so in my opinion someone with experience of the English press might be better suited. Some players in the past have said that when they are playing for England that when they are having a bad day that they just start to think how the press will slate them. The manager is going to have to change psychologically the way the English players fear the press. The press itself could be more supportive of England as many peoples minds are made up by Media so if the Media is more positive than critical even when things go wrong then more people will get behind the national team. No player can go from the best thing ever to the worst thing ever in a space of two games but if you read the press currently you would think so. The ex-footballers whom are now in the media are the only ones falling short of the trend.
The players he will inherit are not World Class so the focus will have to be building a strong team to be able to challenge for trophies. England has a lot of potential coming through backing it up with the Toulon Tournament win. But with Premier league teams opting to have squads based on foreign talent rather than homegrown talent, will the youngsters that won the Tournament be able to develop their trade in the Premier league ? The answer is no. Obviously some will but not all making the job of the manager to be able to focus on building a team with a midterm plan much harder. Another problem they will face is whether to call players back from reputation reasons or to go for players that narrowly missed out on selection like Drinkwater for the first few qualifiers in September. The other problem is will he call the likes of Joe Hart back despite having a poor tournament or will he give a player like Butland a chance to prove his worth in goal despite playing for a weaker team.
credit Ben Sutherland
Style of football
With Portugal winning the Euros and Leicester winning the Premier league with a lot less possession that is normally expected of a Champion. Will the manager opt to make a solid team and get results instead of go for attacking prowess but leave themselves exposed? Will the fans accept a boring style if it gets results? This will be arguably the managers biggest decision as the style of football that he will opt for determines what players get picked.
credit Mick Baker
Football players have to deal with a lot of stress and pressure. So a strong mental ability is almost as important as the footballing ability of the actual player. The more confident a player is the better he will play. England players seem to be lacking the mental strength when they get to the knockout stages of major competitions. Since Euro 2004, penalties vs Portugal, there has not been a single team that has looked mentally very strong. A solution for this would be a permanent group of psychologists that work with the national team. Potentially go even further and the psychologists visit the players at their respective clubs to be able to get a stronger analysis. This an aspect that the manager will have to change to ensure that the national team becomes a reason for celebration instead of embarrassment such was the case versus Iceland.
All in all, this is a great opportunity that has came around for any manager. The FA need to take into consideration a lot of variables, such as short term build or long term build? Whoever comes in needs to be ambitious, fearless and install some passion into the players . Good luck to the next England manager.
Who would you like to see as the next England manager? Let us know in the comments below!
featured image by Mick Baker