Monday, August 20, 2007

Sven - Success or Failure?

My friend Dmitry from Moscow asked me recently on this Blog what I thought of Sven Goran Erickson as a manager and leader.

Sven has made a terrific start as the new manager of Manchester City winning three successive games and his team has yet to concede a goal. They even beat my beloved Manchester United last Saturday and that was hard to swallow.

So it seems Sven has become a hero again in England after being the villain for many English football fans after his perceived failure as manager of our England national team.

I say ‘perceived failure’ because I can't quite make up my mind about whether Sven was a failure or not.

England did very well to qualify for the World Cup and European Championships under Sven's leadership and many people argue that with a little more luck we could have won the Euro Championship and maybe got to the semi final or final of the World Cup.

Too often Sven’s 'off the field' activities dragged him down through tabloid newspaper stories and many fans say that is his own fault.

I would be fascinated to hear comments about whether you think Sven is a good leader/manager.

I think on balance I am prepared to give him the benefit of doubt in my mind and say I think he is a better manager and leader than many English football fans like to give him credit for. If you look at results and nothing else he is a success.

Sven is a fascinating man – thanks for raising this Dmitry


Ken said...

I can't make up my mind about Sven.The players clearly respect him & his club mngt record is excellent.He appears to be a first class man manager but maybe his style is just so unusual for a football team that players are beguiled by him.He is also a very good judge of a player & knows what blend he wants.
He does strike me though as someone with a very firm idea of the formation & way he wants his teams to play &, as this has been successful, he does not see the need to vary it.He strikes me as someone who has no plan B & I believe his ultimate demise with England was because the players sussed out his lack of flexibility & lost confidence in the plan A & him.
It will be interesting to see how the season progresses & how he handles the reverses.Although he clearly has an almost encyclopaedic knowledge of players across the continent I wonder whether international football/tactics/tournament mindset was a step too far for a seemingly one dimensional manager.
Oh yes,& his off field activities didn't do him any favours either!

Trevor Gay said...

Astute comments Ken - I think if City finish in the top 6 that will an enormous accolade for Sven. As always - time will tell.

Dmitry Linkov said...

Wow! Trevor, ken - thanks for information!
I really appreciate it!

Trevor Gay said...

No problem Dmitry.

Ken said...

Yes Liverpool have many fans in Russia.Perhaps Dmitry would like to comment on Voronin who'se goals may well carry us all the way to european glory - again.