Whisper it quietly, but could sanity be returning to the Premier League?
Even Chelsea are feeling the effects of the credit crunch and have let 15 of their scouts go as Roman Abramovich looks to tighten up his scouting structure. Peter Kenyon has already hinted there won’t be much action in the January transfer window at Stamford Bridge.
It seems that coaches will have to work with what they’ve got and try to get the best out of their existing players, use the club’s youngsters or use their bargaining skills to pick up players on the cheap(ish). It looks like it’s only Manchester City who will have the money to splash out in a big way in January, and judging by recent performances, the owners may feel they need to spend to stop their worrying slide down the table.
Harry Redknapp has proved if you’re a good coach, you will get the best out of good players. Spurs might still be bottom of the table but seven points in a week, including games against Arsenal and Liverpool, is an astonishing total for a team that had previously only picked up two points from the previous eight games. And there’s been nothing earth shattering about his approach — he’s simply instilled confidence in his players. The previous needlessly complicated structure of the club has been dismantled and immediately the future is looking brighter. Depending on what paper you read, he gets three to four million a year and could receive another four million bonus for keeping the club up. Well worth the money.
Similarly at Newcastle, Joe Kinnear, who wasn’t exactly welcomed with open arms by the Newcastle fans, has got Newcastle playing with passion and belief again. They’ve won their last two games and are out of the relegation zone, although it’s still very tight at the bottom of the table. It’s a simple approach but difficult to pull off, and it’s good to see two English managers rescuing English clubs, that were failing after trying to apply the continental approach to the Premier League.
It can only be good for English football to have more English managers at the top of the game. And with less money around to spend on players, we might even see more young English players come through academies and be given a go in the Premier League.