With Jacques Santini and Harry Redknapp have bolted Premiership jobs in recent weeks, ex-Coventry boss Gordon Strachan (above) takes a dim view of those dubbed Director Of Football in tomorrow’s Guardian.
If you ask British managers what a director of football is, a lot would probably answer: “A spy.” I don’t want to be disrespectful, but I think they’re mainly a way for chairmen to make sure they know what’s going on throughout their club. They want to know what training’s like, what are the players thinking, whether they’re happy with the manager.
It gives them a legitimate way to find these things out. As it is, some chairmen will go to a player, a coach or someone behind the scenes, like a physio or masseur, and ask questions. But the manager gets to know because there are no secrets at a football club. It’s like having 20 old women together.
I wonder whether anyone can assure me that a director of football really makes a positive difference. And if the director of football is so important, why doesn’t he go when the coach gets sacked?