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tboullem
Salvation ???????
Houghton Saint (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 10:07
Friends and family of mine will tell you, all to readily, that I do get a little grumpy about Rugby when things are not going well. At half time yesterday I was so annoyed at the abject first half performance that I went for a lap of the pitch chatting to a few people on the way. The sight of people asking to be let out of locked gates after forty minutes is not something I have seen before neither do I want to see it again. Saints fans, be they season ticket holders or not, do care about their club. Players, coaches, directors, they all come and go but the two constants are Franklins Gardens and the supporters. No club has a divine right to success, no, not even Leicester but when you have tasted glory, when you have the stadium, the facilities, the sponsors and the fans, then you do come to expect a certain level of professionalism and commitment throughout the club.

We lie tenth in the league, maybe eleventh very soon as Worcester play at home this afternoon. Europe was yet again a shambles and an Anglo-Welsh semi-final at Bath looks a huge task bearing in mind the teams recent performance at The Rec in the league. We have sacked Jim Mallinder and brought in an experienced 'advisor' who leaves the day to day running of the team to the existing coaching staff. Perhaps Jim did paint himself into a corner at the end whilst their can be no doubt that the award of five year contracts after the Premiership title success was a naive move by the Board.

Northampton Rugby Football Club does not appear to be a very happy organisation at the moment and this is not just a question of injuries, bad luck, referees or any other excuse you may care to conjure up. Conspiracy theories come and go, none of us knows the full truth about what is going on behind the scenes. However, in this age of constant press releases and social media we do get snippets from time to time and the evidence does begin to build. Rather like the JFK assassination, rumour of conspiracy can mask the truth !

The club is in a period of limbo until such time that Chris Boyd arrives. We are unlikely to be able to attract any significant players from within the Premiership until such time that the new DOR is not only in position but is able to demonstrate the direction of progress. Senior players such as Day, Wood, Myler and Foden have no apparent idea where they will be playing next season, if indeed they will be playing at all. We know that North and Brookes are on their way, we hear that Lawes may be about to start to his final season at the Gardens.

Stories abound this morning that George North did not want to play against Sale. This is not simply speculation from the fans, it is featured across the media spectrum. George was stated previously that his principal aim is to play a hundred games for Wales. Nothing wrong with ambition per se, but his loyalty to his current club is now very much under scrutiny. Saints fans, who pay their dues, have a rightful expectation that any player should give his all until such time that he leaves for a new club or retires from the game.

Saints do not have an impressive recent record when dealing with the highest quality foreign imports. Carlos Spencer had some sublime moments but never showed the consistency required in the Premership. Victor Matfield was hugely experienced but allegedly told to 'wind his neck in' when he offered to assist with coaching. Louis Picamoles apparently found both the player culture and training methods to be less than satisfactory. And now we have George North in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.

I wonder if we have gone back to the era of cliques which existed before the Mallinder/West era began ? Regardless of the input from Alan Gaffney, have the players lost faith in the coaches who survived Jim's departure ? Is Paul Diggin's departure an inkling of what may take place when this wretched season is finally over ?

We understand that Chris Boyd will be in Northampton later this month in order to take a look at the club and sort out some domestic arrangements. I would assume that he will the having a number of long conversations with Alan Gaffney, the contents of such would be something that a number of players and coaches would not want to hear. Perhaps these discussions will provide some clarity for the future, allow decisions to be made whilst giving some enthusiasm for the next campaign.

A return of a feelgood factor during this long cold winter of discontent is vital. The Board have chosen to raise prices yet again but must be more than a little fearful that the renewal of existing season tickets must be a matter of debate for many supporters. The new CEO has been very impressive since his appointment but as each week passes the enormity of his task must become ever more apparent.

Rightly or wrongly, the efforts of the club to get the home game against Sale played on the appointed day were hugely impressive. The dedication of all those involved allied to those who chose to brave the weather conditions should be applauded. The first-half performance of the team in response to that effort and dedication was quite frankly a disgrace - we know that, the coaches know that, the players know that. Whether the squad as a group ( always individual heroes and villains ) actually care enough we will see during the next few weeks.

Toodle Pip



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/03/2018 10:09 by Mobbs.

 
tedge
Re: Salvation ???????
tedge (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 10:13
+1

 
andysaint
Re: Salvation ???????
andysaint (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 10:20
Need to have a look at the make up of the board, Leicester have the same problem. To many older faces from an era in which rugby no longer plays. Make some changes there and it should filter down.

 
Walks11
Re: Salvation ???????
Walks11 (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 10:34
+1

I do think the current coaches positions have become untenable and while Im not a big fan of the sacking culture but Im struggling to think of justification of retaining anyone. Hopefully Boyd does have a team of coaches in mind to take us forward

I also believe success in sport is cyclical to a degree and its very difficult to maintain the top spot for a lengthy period. Sarries for example are no longer looking quite the invincibles they were of 1-2 seasons ago. With correct management our time will come again I have no doubt, we also need to recognise the errors we have made since we peaked which really wasnt that long ago.

 
MESSAGES->author
Re: Salvation ???????
SaintMaul (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 11:44
I'd add Corbisiero and Kahn.

We've changed the DoR, Chair, the Chief Exec and the communications team. I'd add the Hood being removed as fitness coach because each season since competitiveness has deteriorated and we see more examples of either poor fitness or application.

It takes time for problems to become apparent. Well they are now. Equally, it takes time to out things right in my experience and some stability is needed.

The key question for me is whether further significant changes are necessary to address the issues before we can turn the corner. I'm particularly thinking coaches and players. Or if now we need to resist the urge to make more changes and start re-building with what we have.

Sadly, I think more changes are needed. I just hope they are all complete by pre-season.

 
tedge
Re: Salvation ???????
tedge (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 11:54
Quote:
SaintMaul

Sadly, I think more changes are needed. I just hope they are all complete by pre-season.

If Boyd had joined us by now then you'd probably get your wish. As he is unlikely to be in post until August you won't. He won't/can't make far reaching decisions with no hands on experience

 
Walks11
Re: Salvation ???????
Walks11 (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 12:31
Quote:
tedge
Quote:
SaintMaul

Sadly, I think more changes are needed. I just hope they are all complete by pre-season.

If Boyd had joined us by now then you'd probably get your wish. As he is unlikely to be in post until August you won't. He won't/can't make far reaching decisions with no hands on experience

Hes here for a short period in the com8ng weeks. Id hope he would have a full warts and all brief from Gaffney and start to assess what hes got and what he needs and putting plans in place

 
Longers
Re: Salvation ???????
Longers (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 18:29
Quote:
Walks11
Quote:
tedge
Quote:
SaintMaul

Sadly, I think more changes are needed. I just hope they are all complete by pre-season.

If Boyd had joined us by now then you'd probably get your wish. As he is unlikely to be in post until August you won't. He won't/can't make far reaching decisions with no hands on experience

Hes here for a short period in the coming weeks. Id hope he would have a full warts and all brief from Gaffney and start to assess what hes got and what he needs and putting plans in place

Having just seen the Gaffer's Sale post match interview, I suspect he will get this, and possibly more?

Gaffney gave me the impression that he was a man trying very hard to keep a lid on a seriously simmering pot!

 
Christoff
Re: Salvation ???????
smitferbrainz (IP Logged)
04 March, 2018 18:45
Quote:
Longers
Quote:
Walks11
Quote:
tedge
Quote:
SaintMaul

Sadly, I think more changes are needed. I just hope they are all complete by pre-season.

If Boyd had joined us by now then you'd probably get your wish. As he is unlikely to be in post until August you won't. He won't/can't make far reaching decisions with no hands on experience

Hes here for a short period in the coming weeks. Id hope he would have a full warts and all brief from Gaffney and start to assess what hes got and what he needs and putting plans in place

Having just seen the Gaffer's Sale post match interview, I suspect he will get this, and possibly more?

Gaffney gave me the impression that he was a man trying very hard to keep a lid on a seriously simmering pot!

Maybe better to let it boil over.


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