Date:Sunday October 22 2006
After Saturday's total capitulation to a very average Wigan side, Stuart Pearce will no doubt getting all sorts of advise about what he should and shouldn't be doing, so I don't see why I should be any different. He'll also be reading calls for him to go, but not from this writer.... for a while yet anyway.
Few people could argue that Saturday was a pretty low point for City, and we have quite a few of them in recent and not so recent years. Something is clearly very wrong at the club at the moment and needs to be put right quick !
Now when Psycho took over the hot-seat from KK his arrival was heralded as a breath of fresh air, and it was. At last we had a manager who wore his heart on his sleeve and showed to sort of passion most ordinary City fans show at every game. That's just what we wanted, wasn't it?
I have to say that at matches, I've have watched him prowl and stalk the technical area during the more tedious periods of play, and there are too many of those, as Psycho's animated antics on the touchline have simply been more entertaining than watching the on-field 'action', something which says it all about City really.
However, in trying to analyse and solve City's relegation form, I've come to the conclusion that part of the problem may be Pearce trying to kick every ball and make every tackle from within the technical area.
Pearce is in danger of invading the players' space on the pitch, and the whirlwind of animation for the whole 90 minutes every game must be distracting and off-putting to the players who must be wondering whether the manager has faith in them to do a job on their own; that's a problem we're all probably struggling to get our heads around at the moment after the last few performances, but nevertheless Pearce's well intentioned pitch side coaching, is now I think proving counter-productive and it's time for him to back off.
I think it's clear that the players have underperformed badly so far this season, and it's now time for Pearce to cut the apron strings and let the players individually and collectively take responsibility from the moment the whistle goes and until the referee blows for time.
We know and love the passion and pride Pearce has and if only more would rub off on the players, but it's now time for him to take a step back and let go. Professional players should be capable of reading the game, making decisions and adapting to changing situations when it's necessary to do so. The trouble is that Psycho's trying to do it all for them and the net result is total confusion and players looking like fish out of water, having seemingly lost the ability to think for themselves.
I don't blame the manager for wanting to show leadership and passion - that's why he;s the boss, but I do blame some of the players for not appearing to have the strength of character to sort things out for themselves on the pitch and take responsibility for putting things right - for God's sake, that's what they are paid a fortune for !
So Stuart, in the nicest possible way, just sit down and be quiet... if that's possible !
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