Leeds United boss candidate has 'something to prove' as 49ers Enterprises give themselves buffer
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Almost two weeks after the 49ers Enterprises takeover was agreed Leeds United's managerial recruitment process goes on and though I'm as impatient as anyone, they appear to have a plan.
Everyone has their own take on who the right man will be and some of the names being discussed have made a level of sense.
The latest name in the hat, we're told, is Patrick Vieira, an incredible player, who would bring with him the experience he garnered at New York City, Nice and then Crystal Palace. The sounds out of the Palace camp always seemed positive about Vieira but results didn't quite go his way and then he was under under pressure. I think he's another one who will have many admirers and huge potential but equally he has something to prove and that puts him in the Steven Gerrard bracket. Wonderfully talented individuals as players but as managers, although they've looked good and had a chance, the last job hasn't gone as well as it could.
I think what's what's pleasing from from my point of view is that they're not rushing into a decision. There seems to be a plan behind what they're doing. Hopefully the candidates will be getting that feeling and they will be sold on the future. Unfortunately we're back to looking at the potential of Leeds United, rather than the actual present in the Premier League. The owners, their ideas, their financial clout, what they see happening in the next few years, this is what they need to sell to a potential manager.
I'm impatient like everyone else and already feeling like we're a bit behind the eight ball. Everyone else is cracking on with their managers and sorting their players out and we have all that to do, with pre-season just a couple of weeks away. But if an extra week means we get the right man for the future then I think that has to be the more important part of the equation.
What it takes to manage Leeds United is a manager who understands the club, the fans, the history what it's all about. That that is important. But then he's got to have gravitas to to really pull the different pieces together. We've seen various managers come to Leeds United and really struggle with that. Some absolutely embrace the club and plough forward. So it's looking at those previous managers and taking stock and then really putting his own imprint on it, being the main man and stating his ambition so he can take the players with him. I think it starts with the first few signings he makes and the first few results. It's going to be a little bit more difficult for our new man because suddenly a lot of things are going be thrown together at the last minute, so we've got a bit of a job on. You really have to be a strong character or a leader to pull it all together.
Style wise, the manager has to have some very strong views on that. You have to look at the players you've got, there's no point playing any style if you haven't got the players to carry it out. It might be a bit of mix and match to begin with and that's where the ins and outs are so important this summer.
I was pleased when Nick Hammond's arrival got announced because he's been in the game many a year, he was in that role at Reading and he's done a bunch of consultancy work. He did it with Newcastle, very successfully, although it's a little different when you have those kinds of funds available, you do get a little advantage, but I thought they bought extremely well in that window. What they really did well was getting in the right sort of character. That's what I'm looking for now once he has a really good understanding of the club and where we are, where we need to go or not go. That's important for the 49ers because they need time to really review the whole footballing operations, get together with the new board and work out our long-term strategy. Those things don't happen overnight. Of course, they would have been thinking about putting the pieces together. I think Hammond is a good option to make sure that that long-term plan is one that everyone believes in. The period of time that Hammond is here could be an important buffer for them.
And as he pulls rank when it comes to transfers, allowing the board to get their manager ducks in a row, this particular period of time will be a first real test of their footballing decision making. Let's hope the manager that comes in will be an exciting one who can hit the ground running.