We’ve often complained that in England, all media pressure falls on the manager, even as their role has shrunk. Sporting directors make a lot of personnel decisions now, which often the manager is left answering for, even if they had little to do with it.
So it’s great to see a change on that front – Chelsea’s co-sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley have just an interview on the club’s website.
They make some interesting points, and it’s well worth a read. Despite all being conducted by the club’s in house media, it still takes on quite a defensive stance – results haven’t yet been able to reflect the billion pounds spent:
“We will plan two transfer windows in advance. We can’t be reactionary. We’ve got to look at the whole squad, the players that are out on loan, and opportunities we can give to players in the Academy. That is the player puzzle we’ve got to pull together.”
“We’ll go through that review and reflection process now as we continue with the plan. Then, as we get closer to January, we look at things again. Is there anything urgent we need? Is anything pressing? Or is there an interesting opportunity?”
One interesting claim is that the pair will plan two windows ahead. That didn’t seem to be the case when they instantly bought Axel Disasi upon Wesley Fofana’s injury, but to be fair this was only their second window, so we can only assume things will be smoother from now on.
Unfortunately, it seems a lot of damage was done in the period before they arrived. The signing of Marc Cucurella and Fofana look like £150m of catastrophe, and we were very lucky to be bailed out of the Kalidou Koulibaly issue too.