Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Shuffling up the list?

With our good run of form having quietened the media storm surrounding the manager's vacancy at Newcastle, it was interesting to see that Glenn Roeder's case for the job on a permanent basis is now being advanced in the national press.

In his favour, Roeder is popular with the fans (who sang his name on Saturday), favours creative flowing football which utilises wingers to good advantage, has the ability to coach defenders (something which a string of previous managers have proved incapable of doing) and is also an ex- Newcastle player.

Against these positives must be weighed some negatives. Significantly, Roeder lacks the requisite coaching qualification to allow him to take the job full time, and unless that particular deficiency is overcome he won't be able to take the job regardless of how strong a case he can mount.

Whilst he's done a decent job so far, it's important to remember that we've faced opposition which we should be perfectly capable of beating. The challenge now becomes much sterner, with the four best teams in the country (according to the League Table) as our next four opponents.

It's also worth bearing in mind that Fat Fred appears to want a big name manager. Someone who will attract top quality players to the club, and can be a charismatic leader. Whilst he may have a certain charisma, it's fair to say that Roeder's is not the name that springs instantly to mind when such criteria are listed.

At present, it still seems too early to tell, and I suspect that Fred is still making eyes at bigger fish like O'Neill and Sven (who is a certainty to be our next manager if my local barber is to be believed). However, if Roeder can keep the recovery going by taking us through March with the same level of performance and success that he managed through February, and in doing so get results at unhappy hunting grounds Old Trafford and Stamford Bridge in the process, then Fred may be forced to look closer to home for a permanent appointment.


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