Why it's important to have a mix of characters in the Leeds United squad

I find it strange how different players are motivated in different ways.

By Catherine Hamill
Tuesday, 8th February 2022, 6:00 am

My brother told me a story the other day about Roy Keane, back when he was a manager, giving his players a pasting in his half-time team talk.

He apparently told Danny Higginbotham how terrible he was and how little faith he had that they would go out and play well.

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Higginbotham thought “I’ll show him” went out there and played one of the best games of his life.

I don’t know how I’d react in his shoes - I’m not sure that tactic would work on me!

When you know how hard you work, and how much it means to you, I don’t think I’d like it.

You know in your head how committed you are to the team and to performing well so, if you’ve got a coach doubting that, I can imagine it would be infuriating.

Leeds United Women captain Catherine Hamill instructing her team-mates during the Whites' 1-1 draw with Chorley. Pic: LUFC.

I’m OK with criticism but, if it was relentless, I’d struggle.

So no, I’m not sure I would thrive under the likes of Keane or Alan Shearer - the blunter types.

Pep Guardiola or Jürgen Klopp seem quite encouraging, though I’m not sure how I would feel about all the constant hugging from Jürgen. I think I would try and keep my distance.

That being said, it’s probably easy to keep so positive when you’re fielding some of the best players in the world!

Leeds United Women captain Catherine Hamill. Pic: LUFC.

Brendan Rodgers strikes me as a very calm manager but I’ve no idea what he’s like behind the scenes and would he be able to get a team fully riled up in such a soothing tone?

Maybe not.

I like to think I’m quite level-headed so maybe having someone just like you may not always be the best option.

Different characters and personalities - whether it be players, managers, coaches - are what makes a team!

Bridie Hannon celebrates scoring Leeds United's winner against Barnsley with Savanna Robson. Pic: LUFC.

I think, if we had a team full of me, the away bus would just look like everyone sitting among their thoughts, listening to music, focusing on the game.

It’s definitely important to have a mix of characters within a team. Sometimes I feel bad that I can’t get too hyped up before a game - I like to keep myself to myself.

After we came from two goals behind to beat Barnsley 3-2 in the league last week, I had a great time dancing about the changing rooms with Bass, Paige, Kanisha and Laura but, rest assured, the hard work had been done, then – before kick-off it’s always calm and business-like on my end.

Fortunately, we’ve got a few lively characters that can bring something a bit different to the pre-match preparations.

Rebekah Bass, for one thing, is a true beacon of positivity in the changing rooms.

She’s from a big family of Leeds fans so it’s a real joy to catch her grandad for a natter after the game too.

Leeds United Women full back Rebekah Bass. Pic: LUFC.

You can always tell when Bass isn’t there, because she’ll be dancing around every matchday.

I wonder what Roy Keane would make of her!

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