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[Blog] Who's Really Responsible?
Written by SouperJim on Friday, 19th Mar 2010 13:59

Having had time to digest Keane's comments post-Watford, quite a lot about the performance of our squad over the last three seasons has clicked in to place for me. Once again our controversial and outspoken manager is coming under fire for a poor performance, yet he's admitted his share of the blame. Is it really Roy Keane who is ultimately responsible?

rytext">This blog has been submitted by SouperJim. To view more from this author click here. TWTD blogs are added by site users unedited by the admins. Want to become a TWTD blogger? Simply send us your first article via the Contact Us page. It's been clear to me for a while that there is a problem with the attitude amongst certain parts of our squad. It was wholly apparent under Jim, yet there was enough doubt for me to put it down to Jim not being able to get enough of a reaction having gone from player to manager overnight.

It now seems clear that there was an element of comfort zone under Jim, which yielded a relatively content squad but one that picked and chose when to play. Remember that Ben Thatcher took it upon himself prior to the last derby game to "have a word" with the squad and motivate them into putting a shift in against Norwich?

Remember Shane Supple's comments about the attitude of his fellow professionals when he decided to turn his back on football. These and other episodes are clear indicators for those able to read between the lines.

It's also not lost on me that the people in control of this club chose Keane as the man to thrash this team into shape. When you consider Neil Warnock was also reportedly interviewed, it seems clear that they where at least aware that a hard task master was potentially what we needed.

No, Keane is not a perfect manager, however, I can't think of anyone better to take a sledgehammer to the "cruise control" attitude at this football club. I've got plenty of time for Pablo, Garvan, Walters, Stead, Lisbie etc. They are all, on paper, capable of being good players. However, to varying degrees, they have all fallen short of the mark over the last two to three seasons and it seems clear to me it's a matter of desire, ambition, self-belief and professionalism.

If these players can't turn it around, then I for one will support the manager if he has to show them the door and bring in more new faces. Go back and read the comments made by the likes of Edwards, Leadbitter, Healy and Murphy about their relationship with the manager and understanding of what is expected.

The sooner we have 11 players singing from this hymn-sheet the better. I'm sure some would cry heresy if the likes of Garvan were allowed to move on, yes he might be the best potential playmaker we have, but ask yourself the question, has he really been consistently good enough over the last three seasons? Good enough to get in Burley's Premiership team? Because that's what we're aiming for. My answer is no, not good enough. Enough chances, enough time, step up to the plate or walk out the door and give someone else a chance to actually do our manager and our club justice.

I will always support the playing staff at our club, however, many fans need to consider the performances of some of the players, players who have been at this club a lot longer than Keane, and stop blindly blaming the manager for everything which goes wrong. I still have faith that Keane will complete the job he came here to do, if the fans start pulling in the same direction and give him the time he needs to pull this club out of its current decline.

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djbreeze added 14:15 - Mar 19
agreed ...

51blue added 14:21 - Mar 19
Agree 100%

WadzillaBhoy added 14:30 - Mar 19
Spot on mate some of the fans have got just as poor an attitude as some of the players. Get behind Keano, he's the right man for the job. We have a manager with a great football pedigree arguably the best pedigree in our league as a player. He is still learning as a manager so we havent seen the best of him yet. Remember who he played under, Brian Clough, Sir Alex Ferguson and Martin O'Neill three of the best managers the game has ever seen. I know win lose or draw Im backing Ipswich and Im backing Keano. Sometimes its not easy, but it makes winning that much better. And anyway to be fair to Keano he's only lost 11 games, the only other teams that have lost less are all in the top 5! COYB

dobbie73 added 15:07 - Mar 19
Yep, pretty much agree with all that. Good blog!

mightytown added 15:12 - Mar 19
agree completely, well said

naa added 15:15 - Mar 19
Yep, good blog.

Only issue I have is that Edwards and (to a lesser extent considering his fitness) Healy have also both underwelmed. If they are Keane's type of player what's their excuse?

As for Garvan, don't disagree, I'm not convinced he'll ever be top class, but he is the only player of his type at the club currently and, until a replacement is found he should be playing.

As for Walters. I think is is a Keane type player. I suspect his problems this season are as much to do with burn-out than anything else. He runs around a lot during games (even when not playing well) and rarely misses out with injury. Maybe he just needs a rest.

ReydonBlue added 16:14 - Mar 19
Superb blog...well said..COYB

SouperJim added 16:15 - Mar 19
Good point about Garvan, if Keane were to decide his chances had run out then I would put a quality passing creative midfield player top of our transfer priorities. Our forwards have struggled for form this season, but the service they've recieved has left a lot to be desired at times too.

Wickets added 16:29 - Mar 19
Well done son!!

PimsNumber1 added 16:38 - Mar 19
Good blog.I really think Keane has a problem in that dressing room. Split factions etc . He needs to get some replacements in and let the ones with limited ambition leave.There is too much player power , re magilton and Johnson to name just two. Scolari even had problems , and there are others. But how do you handle it. ? It must really hack keane off that he has these inferior( to his standard) players calling or trying to call the shots

JayITFC added 16:39 - Mar 19
Yep, the pile of dead wood we have will do nicely for bonfire night!

apm_77 added 16:57 - Mar 19
Whole heartedly agree, sir! I've said for a while now that the players have got to start behaving like professionals and taking some real responsibility for what goes on on the pitch. Once they cross that white line it's down to them. Keane has his faults, and I'll admit that after the Barnsley game in October I could see no other option than getting rid, but Keane is slowly building a side and as soon as we can put this woeful season behind us and start again in July the better. He might not have been everyone's choice but I think the foundations are there and it's time alone that's needed to get us among the promotion favourites next term.

PutYaBootsOnKeano added 19:14 - Mar 19
Good man Souper, my sentiments exactly. I remember a time when you and I disagreed on much. I'm glad we're alligned these days

Players simply must step up, or not play for the club. Promotion remains the agenda. I think those fans that champion certain players need to clear the fog and see where we're headed; stop acquiescing.

terry added 19:48 - Mar 19
Good blog, with some good points. I just don't think we have seen enough evidence that Keane is capable of spotting talent, particularly at this level. Our recent success was built taking players from the lower leagues or smaller clubs and making them better - is this what Keane is about? I'm not sure, though I do back him.

FenboyBlue added 21:10 - Mar 19
Well put, Souper. I said something similar on here yesterday, but not as well summarised. Roy's enlightening comments today about home form and away form clearly show that we're back at Jim's second season again! (As an aside it would be great if Roy & Jim got together and shared notes, but Jim deserves his money first). Despite Roy's errors, which he is identifying honestly and learning from, the heart of the problem is still this unambitious cushty mid-table player lifestyle that Supple hinted at and looks like it's been entrenched here since Joe's last season. It makes me think & admire how Burley achieved promotion, because his promotion winning side performed relentlessly -some for 4 years! - and were never afraid that they would be discarded if promoted and they all played beyond expectations once in the Premiership too. Given what Roy has seen in dressing rooms run by Sir Alex and Cloughie, I'm pretty certain now we've got a good chance of breaking out of this malaise.

Nevadablue added 05:57 - Mar 20
Firstly I want to say what a well put together blog, excellently written. However, I think it's fair to say that Keane has brought in a good number of players since arriving here and so the argument about problems in the dressing room last season continuing into this season is somewhat negated by that. I have written elsewhere that it is the lack of loyalty of players, so many of whom are on loan, that contributes more than anything else to dressing room issues. But the bottom line is that the manager has to sort this out on a day to day basis, he's had plenty of time to do it and it doesn't bode well that he is still trying to get the motivation right as we enter the final phase of an underwhelming season with relegation still a real danger.

brogansnose added 09:47 - Mar 20
Go along with that Souper. Trouble is we need a clear out and who wants our dead wood?

WadzillaBhoy added 10:34 - Mar 21
Terry - Shane O'Connor comes to mind!

NorthStand added 11:29 - Mar 21
I agree that there has been too much complacency in the playing ranks over the years and that someone was needed to come in and shake things up a bit. But there’s more than one way to skin a cat. Is RK’s fire and brimstone approach the right one or are there more intelligent ways of going about it? And besides, motivating the squad is only one of the skills of being a manager. What about nous in the transfer market, team selection and tactics? Overall he has failed miserably so far.

I believe RK should be given the 2 years he signed up for. But he has to be judged against very high standards. He did not take over a struggling team. We finished 9th in the league last season. RK has been given the resources that most managers in the Championship can only dream about. If he does not take us into the play-offs next season he will have been an abject failure and should be shown the door.


Happy2bBlue added 11:48 - Mar 22
I agree with most of this but I'm not sure that it's effort we lack but that winning mentality and it will come with confidence. Given the improvement in Garvan since the beginning of the season I still think he can still be an important player for us next season.

christiand added 11:01 - Apr 2
I have to admit I have been one of the many supporters that does question Keane. Being a fan, I do want the best for the club and yes I want Keane to succeed but I am not sure what he is trying to achieve here. Yes, we aren't losing many games and we have tightened up defensively however our general play lacks finesse and we can't score goals! I would like him to appoint a more experienced coach to work alongside him, the rumoured appointment of Peter Taylor earlier in the season would've been ideal - a quality coach with a proven track record. I do hope that he can turn the club around and turn us into promotion contenders next season but I still stand by the fact he still has more questions than answers about his managerial capability.

SouperJim added 10:40 - Apr 3
I think Ian McParland has been a good addition to the coaching staff, although it's almost impossible for a fan to really judge the performance of anyone other than the manager. He's certainly a more respectable figure than Tony Loughlan, who it's generally accepted is just Keane's mouthpiece.
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