Big Sam Allardyce has got the job no one wants, except him it seems. The big Brummy is buzzing with enthusiasm, but how long can that last before the first hiccup brings the notoriously vicious English press to town. Either way England have their man and it may have been 10 years after the last time Sam flirted with the job but both parties will get what they want this time.
Sam was only at Sunderland for nine month before this opportunity. He managed to stave off yet another relegation and save the club from the impending doom. This means that Allardyce has still never been relegated, which is no mean feat for an unfashionable manager who has managed over 467 games in the league. That is the fourth most for any manager and if we are honest, Sam is the most experienced English manager on the shortlist. Steve Bruce was interviewed, but he does what he does at a level lower and is almost ‘Allardyce light’. Sam was interviewed in 2006 when Steve McLaren was chosen over him. He will be hoping his tenure is more successful.
He will certainly put his stamp on the team. Allardyce may have a bad reputation for beauty, but it certainly gets results and for England and that is what matters most in the big tournaments. England are a broken team at the moment and he will bust through the door and not let anyone get away without doing their workload. Gio Muratore who writes betting tips said “to most he would seem an unusual and unglmarous choice but to us he was the clear antidote to the last few managers.”.He is an infectious motivator and the fact he is English will give him that connection with the players a foreign man will struggle with. He is tactically savvy and has frustrated many a top manager with Mourinho and Wenger at the top of his list. He is noted for his alternative approach to playing with sport science a big focus. He uses Prozone, a company specialising in the dark arts and Kevin Davies says the English players will know what is expected of them as soon as they walk through the door. “He will put the laws and rules down. At Bolton he had a bible which everyone had to read and sign up to. It was the rules and regulations. The way we trained and prepared for games was all in there. It was a 20-25 page document that everyone had to adhere to.”
He makes sure his teams are tough to beat, yes, but that is not what he is all about. He has an affinity for flair players who can unlock the door and he does not mind, even creating space for them. “I have managed some world class players. Fernando Hierro, Youri Djorkaeff, Jay Jay Okocha, Gary Speed, Nicolas Anelka and Michael Owen. I have managed some talented players; the good thing about that is they make your life easier, they know what you want.” he said at his inaugural press conference. Some of the players who will have had their ears pricked by the news of the appointment are Andy Carrol,l who fits into the Big Sam mould, as well as Mark Noble who Sam has championed for England for a long time.
In my opinion England have picked the best man for the job, not neccesarily the best manager. There are better managers in the world but I believe Big Sam is made for this job, with his enthusiasm and his short fuse, it will certainly get the player playing. He will take no prisoners and any pre-Madonnas will be quickly shown the door. He also will get rid of a pet peeve of mine, which is playing players out of position. No more Kane on corners, or Rooney at centre mid. Maybe even no Rooney at all! Most of importantly for me he will make England hard to beat. I understand the worry over the style of the play, and maybe if it was a club with 40 + games a season I would agree. But the truth is England have unperformed at major tournaments and that is just 6 games if we reach the finals. What we need is a man to take us deep into a tournament and give us the best chance of winning. I don’t mind being ugly if it means winning the beauty contest!