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GPs Beard

So what went on with Chris Hughton?

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I grew to loath watching us play under CH. The style of play has become legendary amongst fans , it was turgid and boring. We went from a 10 match unbeaten run (even better than Barcelona at the time) to staying up when West Brom brought their deckchairs . The next year saw him win most "must win" games until he lost the last one (ironically against West Brom again) and that was it.

So what was so different when he was with us? Was it the money (or lack of) ? the Norfolk Air? trying to change Paul Lamberts team into his own?

His record (non Norwich) is pretty good. And continues to be so . At Spurs he earned his stripes and did OK , hard to argue with what he did with Ashley''s money at Newcastle getting sacked when they were 12th in the table, and at Birmingham (with apparently no money)

At Brighton he first kept them up , then finished third by a goal, and now are up there again.

So was it him? Or the set up?

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We took a very defensive and safety first approach to football as a small team and thin squad in the biggest league, with the apparent ambition of finishing 17th.

I suspect in the Championship with a similar squad (bigger fish, smaller pond) he would have set us up quite differently.

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The signings of RVW and Hooper did for him. A huge amount of money on players not good enough to score the goals to keep us up. He had little choice after that. It''s arguable but we probably would have been better keeping him. But as you say Beardo, you ran out of patience. Those two signings continued to cost us though.

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I don''t think Hooper has done much at Sheffield Wednesday either and doesn''t seem to be first choice unless he has been injured.

Ricky meanwhile - well, it started well at his latest club at least. Not that I care.

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Ricky Van, goal machine

greatest striker that we''ve seen

If he was a rock band, he''d be Queen

23 starts 11 goals for his Dutch club.

But he was still gash for us.

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nutty nigel wrote the following post at 01/03/2017 1:52 PM:

The signings of RVW and Hooper did for him. A huge amount of money on players not good enough to score the goals to keep us up. He had little choice after that. It''s arguable but we probably would have been better keeping him. But as you say Beardo, you ran out of patience. Those two signings continued to cost us though.

To be fair Nutty it wasn''t just me that lost patience. I don''t recall too many people suggesting he stay after the West Brom game, and I did think the roll of the dice routine was worth a go. but with hindsight, as you say, didn''t end well. Even if we had beaten Fulham though , we would have gone down.

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[quote user="GPs Beard"]nutty nigel wrote the following post at 01/03/2017 1:52 PM:

The signings of RVW and Hooper did for him. A huge amount of money on players not good enough to score the goals to keep us up. He had little choice after that. It''s arguable but we probably would have been better keeping him. But as you say Beardo, you ran out of patience. Those two signings continued to cost us though.

To be fair Nutty it wasn''t just me that lost patience. I don''t recall too many people suggesting he stay after the West Brom game, and I did think the roll of the dice routine was worth a go. but with hindsight, as you say, didn''t end well. Even if we had beaten Fulham though , we would have gone down.[/quote]
It wasn''t a criticism Beardo. We are back there now with this manager and many say the same things. And of course anyone was better than Worthy....
I believe in the idea of a long term manager and the stability it brings. That doesn''t mean I never want change. Grant, Roeder and Gunn and even Lambert probably couldn''t have been that option. But I believe Worthy and Hughton could. Could Alex Neil? I''m not as sure as with the other two. 
On another thread it was stated that Fergie would probably had the same success with any other top side. I don''t believe that for a minute because he was a perfect fit for United. Wenger is a perfect fit for Arsenal too. But the fans have lost patience with qualifying for the CL every year.
Whatever I hope we move forward with a plan that suits our club and isn''t borrowed from someone else.

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Surely the rest of Worthy''s management career suggests he probably couldn''t have been a long-term manager for a Prem / top Championship club?

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I was coincidentally thinking this last night whilst listening to 5live. In hindsight sticking with Hughton and having him build his own squad in his own way in the Championship could have been interesting to see. Mind you I am not sure we would have gone straight back up under him as we had a squad that couldn''t/wouldn''t play to Hughton''s style. As can be seen, he has been very successful in this league, he had the best defence and best attack stats whilst at Newcastle, had one of the best attacks and defence stats with a very limited Birmingham side, and the same again with Brighton. Even at us we weren''t losing games by more than 1 goal generally, our problem was just the attack - which many Premier league teams have. At the moment because of the fear factor of not getting the money from the PL, a lot of teams tend to play not to lose rather to win, setting up often dull and boring matches - usually low scoring games as teams tend to set up an organised back line but don''t want to risk too much going forward and therefore relying too much on individual flashes of brilliance from flair players.

Don''t get me wrong, at the time I had had enough of Hughton and thought he should go - I did also conceive at the time that he should have either gone a couple months earlier or not until the end of the season. Again, it would be interesting to go back in time and see if he would have kept us up, or sack him earlier to see if Adams (or whoever) could keep us up.

On another note, on the pre match last night, in an interview with Benitez, Benitez described Hughton as "a very nice man".

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I agree he did, but in my innocence of youth I don''t think I really appreciated it like I have done the Lambert era.

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Lambert achieved much more on the pitch. He just doesn''t seem to me the kind of manager for long term. That doesn''t detract from what he achieved.

In the innocence of my youth I probably never really appreciated Lol Morgan....

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Worthy did a great job for a few years but his and the teams stagnation for me suggests he was here for a bit too long if anything.

I think the idea of a long term manager is a bit of red herring to be honest. Ferguson is very much the exception and Wenger has grown stale after so long in one place. And at our level it isnt a realistic prospect - if a manager does well he''ll be poached by a bigger club, if he doesn''t he''ll be sacked.

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Even if we were given a cast iron guarantee that Hughton would have taken us up the following season, the feeling was that it would be too depressing an experience as he had already sucked the enjoyment out of the place.

Will be interesting if Brighton go up how he sets them up in the Prem

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Thought it was interesting watching him last night v Newcastle, as soon as they equalised he took of a forward and put another midfielder, and his body language was as if he knew what was coming, he just stood and watched as Newcastle started to flood them, To be fair he gave Newcastle great credit as they are a top side with top players or words to that effect, heard that before?

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But then Worthy would probably have done a better job turning that stagnation around than Grant and Roeder. But it''s all opinion. There''s nothing factual about any of it. It''s my opinion that teams stagnate because of the mix of players they are stuck with. Sometimes they are the players the manager brought in. But that doesn''t mean he wouldn''t do such a good job of replacing them than anyone else. In fact my nan couldn''t have done a worse job than Peter Grant. I like him so nothing personal there. I liked my nan too....
For such an inexact science I''m mystified as to why people so quickly call for managers to be replaced. Even success elsewhere does not mean they will be successful at their new club. And there are so many managers on the gravy train from club to club without a care for building anything worthwhile. 

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[quote user="king canary"]Wenger has grown stale after so long in one place.[/quote]Got to laugh at this.Perm CL qualifying, top 4 each season, great players with superb football on display, but apparently this represents being stale....Just lol at modern football....

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@Indy_Bones

Oh come on now. Yes his accomplishments should not be trivialized, but I sorta agree with the Wenger out crowd. Like clockwork, every season he starts out as title contenders, only to have it slip away usually in the 3rd quarter of the season timeframe.

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To be fair Nutty I think as a fan base we give managers more time than others. I think after 18 months of underperforming you can''t really blame fans for thinking a better alternative is available.

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[quote user="king canary"]Worthy did a great job for a few years but his and the teams stagnation for me suggests he was here for a bit too long if anything.

I think the idea of a long term manager is a bit of red herring to be honest. Ferguson is very much the exception and Wenger has grown stale after so long in one place. And at our level it isnt a realistic prospect - if a manager does well he''ll be poached by a bigger club, if he doesn''t he''ll be sacked.[/quote]This is one of the advantages of a DoF + 1st Team Coach as opposed to the traditional British-style manager-in-charge-of-everything. You can keep the coaching fresh without destabilising the rest of the football infrastructure and support services such as recruitment, scouting system, etc.

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[quote user="hogesar"]To be fair Nutty I think as a fan base we give managers more time than others. I think after 18 months of underperforming you can''t really blame fans for thinking a better alternative is available.[/quote]It sounds reasonable, but ignores the crucial question of whether the "underperformance" is real. If the fans'' belief is that we "should" be established in the EPL, failure to become established is interpreted as underperformance. I don''t think we have underperformed at all; if anything we have done better than might reasonably have been expected given how ill-equipped the club had become for top tier football in the years leading up to relegation to League 1 and how constrained any redevelopment was by the financial situation until hugely alleviated by Hughton keeping us up in his first season. 

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I also think that prioritising an immediate return to the top tier has prevented us (twice now) from doing the necessary consolidating and structured team rebuilding that got by-passed due to the speed of our rise under Lambert. As I''ve said before, our shortcomings now are in a real sense Lambert''s legacy. 

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It''s funny you should lol at modern football Indy when in fact it is modern footballs obsession that finishing 4th is like a trophy that keeps him going. I don''t see a great deal of point in qualifying for a tournament every year if you can''t ever compete in it.

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@westcoast

I agree with you on the director of football approach. However I can''t get on board with the idea our underperformance is in the imagination of the fans. We kept the Premier league squad together more or less and spent decent money to add to this. This was all clearly set up for an immediate return and we''ve undershot by quite an amount.

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[quote user="king canary"]It''s funny you should lol at modern football Indy when in fact it is modern footballs obsession that finishing 4th is like a trophy that keeps him going. I don''t see a great deal of point in qualifying for a tournament every year if you can''t ever compete in it.[/quote]Of course it keeps him going - It''s bloody good management FFS!ANY English club outside of the current top 6 sides would KILL for that sort of consistent league finish, quality of players and attractive football on display - all whilst maintaining financial viability and playing in a brand new stadium in the process, yet somehow we''re meant to believe that this represents failure, and that a manager has gone ''stale''.I can''t get the over-entitlement of Arsenal fans, but what I understand even less is our fans agreeing with this, when we''d LOVE to be in that position, instead of yo-yo-ing about and having to put up with a lot of poor football in the process.Outside of Ferguson, Wenger is the best manager the premier league has seen in terms of quality of play on the pitch, and what he''s acheived WITHOUT some rich billionaire buying their way to a title, just a shame we''d have a snowball chance in hell''s chance of getting him if he left Arsenal and AN moved on...

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Different teams have different aspirations. Saying ''Norwich fans would kill for what they have'' is totally irrelevant. Arsenal fans pay by far the highest ticket prices in the country and thus expect more than being out of the league title race and the champions league by February.

I''ve long believed that the worst thing that can happen to a football club from a fans perspective is stagnation. Most arsenal fans I know would rather win the league one year and finish 8th the other over this yearly repetition.

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Yes, saying fans of clubs outside the top 6 would love to be in Arsenal''s position is irrelevant.  Arsenal aren''t outside the top 6, they''re a club who''s fans feel they should be in contention for winning the Prem, based on the resources they have available and their recent history - it''s not that long since they won the title and went undefeated all season.  The entitlement of some fans at a club like that can be irritating, e.g. when they play us they will assume they "ought" to win.  Query - when we play Burton, is the way we feel any different ?  (Well, normally speaking - I certainly travelled to Burton recently with a very open mind about what the result would be and I was totally unsurprised that we lost, but you know what I mean...).

 

So I find it very easy to understand their fans who feel they should be in contention for the title; realistically it''s a few years since they''ve actually been contenders.  Most seasons they put together a run with some good results in the autumn, enough to get people thinking this might be their year....and the wheels come off in the winter.  Significantly it was no different last year when all the recent champions had poor seasons, leaving the way open for another team to come in....

 

Having said this, I think Wenger has many good qualities as a manager, he''s just lacking in some areas which make the difference between putting together & managing a team of also-rans versus a team of champions (there''s a whole question here about his past success which I don''t have time to go into, but this is clearly true for him as a manager now ).  So I can see why a lot of fans want a change.  But there is a very real risk it could backfire and they could do worse.  Which is different from us where IMO AN is poor as a manager generally so the risk that we''d get someone who''s worse (assuming we don''t make an appointment on the cheap...) is low.  Of course, there are no certainties when you bring in a new manager, which some fans find a compelling reason to stick with whatever you''ve got, no matter how bad... But I''d say that''s just life, you can never eliminate risk and you just have to make the best call you can in the situation, accepting it''s a risk whether you stick or twist....

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The on;y people who can decide if a manager is under performing are his employers.

And despite many supporters believing that 30 or 40 or more years watching their team qualifies as ownership, it makes no difference to a managers tenure at a club.

Fans may influence, by not turning up or booing but that is all they can do.

Some managers basically sack themselves by never coming close to what the directors consider success. Others last for years because they have created a dynasty at their club.

And then there are those, like AN at the moment, who have had a measure of success but are currently not producing and have upset the fans to a certain degree. It is like drawing 16 at pontoon.

There are automatic risks by changing managers but obviously some immediate successes by sacking them (Leicester so far but definitely not Villa).

But this forum is purely for supporters to debate the issues surrounding the club. 90% is opinion and another 9% pure speculation. And occasionally 1% of truth.

And this site has thrived on much of last and most of this seasons performance and especially whether the manger should be retained or sacked.

Of posters, I would hazard an educated guess that the majority want to sack the manager and take what they believe is a worthwhile risk (me included).

Many think it is worthwhile giving the bloke more time. And that he will turn it around.

And that is what creates interest on here.

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It was simply down to timing with Chris hughton. We went from the most attacking manager to a defensive manager which resulted us being neither here nor there.

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