Thursday, November 22, 2007

West Ham Vision Needed by England

Trevor Brooking
You couldn't make this stuff up. It seems that FA chief executive Brian Barwick, who was largely responsible for the appointment of Steve McClaren, has been given sole responsibility to identify McClaren's successor and recommend him to the FA board.

One name being banded around today is Alan Shearer. Appointing a man with no managerial experience to the job of England manager is in the fine tradition of the FA but surely even they couldn't be so stupid. Another suggestion that seems to be gaining ground is to appoint West Ham legend Sir Trevor Brooking as caretaker manager. This could be a good idea if England have to wait for another target to become available but despite Brooking's obvious talents he also lacks experience as a manager (and I think the necessary coaching badges).

The FA are of course making all the correct sound bites about a "root and branch examination" of the English game. And it here that I think that they should utilise Brooking's experience.

Trevor Brooking has been charged with trying to overhaul the skills gap in English football from the bottom up. Only this week he has been bemoaning the lack of talent at youth coaching level in this country and he has fought long and hard for a National Football Centre to develop players and coaches.

The FA have long been ambivalent about the plans for a National Football Centre. One positive outcome from England's failure to qualify for Euro 2008 may be that the FA are forced to acknowledge the need for a centre of excellence to develop youth coaches and players.

At the moment Brooking seems to be the only member of the FA with a vision for improving the English game from the grass roots. Therefore forget appointing Brooking as the next English manger and instead sack Brian Barwick and install Sir Trevor Brooking as the FA chief executive.


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