Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Sir Alex Ferguson calls for continuity

There are few coaches around the world who have been given time and support to take their teams to the Promised Land.
Those few coaches have not disappointed at their respective teams and won many titles and made history that is going to take centuries to break.

Such coaches have also been given all the accolades on earth of which many would only dream of. One of such rare breed of coaches is Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson.

Ferguson joined Man U, as the team is affectionately called, in 1986 and it took him four years to win a major trophy and six years to win the league championship. In many countries, a season is normally enough if nothing comes the team’s way.
Now Fergusson is in the 22nd season and boasts of 10 league titles and two European championships.

He is now regarded as the most successful manager not only in England but also around the globe.
Recently when his team visited South Africa for the Vodacom Challenge tournament, he told Sunday Standard that there is nothing unusual that he does compared to other teams but said that it is just that his team has always given him full backing throughout his tenure. “Throughout my entire coaching career at Manchester United, the management has always been behind me. They have always given me support and that is why Manchester United is the most successful team around the world. Few coaches around the world are given support and that is why they do not achieve the way they are supposed to. Once the support is there, we can see more coaches succeeding even more than Manchester United,” he said.

Ferguson also gave the example of former Nottingham Forest Manager, Brian Clough, who also had successful stints in the mid 70s and late eighties.
Ferguson said the late Clough was successful because there was continuity at the team and that is vital for any team.

“Clough won back to back European championship titles because of the good management. Nowadays, many teams are always embroiled in boardroom politics and that never takes them where they are supposed to and it is not good for football at all. People should learn that patience is always the way to go. We always see many young good managers failing but not necessarily meaning they are not capable but because of the off the field battles,” he said.

Ferguson’s message should also serve as a lesson to local teams that firing coaches left right and centre, without giving ample time is retrogressive.
Most local teams always want quick fix results. It is rare in Botswana to find a team with the same coach at least two seasons in a row. Sometimes even when the results are coming, the management does not appreciate the coach and would still fire him..

Currently, there is also no team that is grooming its own coach for the long term plan. They end up going for short cuts, which backfires in the long run.
As the new season is about to kickoff, most teams have new coaches, and several others are still considering showing the incumbent ones the door.

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper

The Telegraph September 23

Digital edition of The Telegraph, September 23, 2020.