An old war horse bows out

Early December 2019. A previous post revealed that, back in the summer of 2019, Ukrainian second tier club MFC Mykolaiv decided to sign Volodymar Kornutyak. Scene: the Kornutyak household in their rented accommodation in Mykolaiv. Personae dramatis: Volodymar Kornutyak; Mrs Kornutyak KORNUTYAK: Well, perhaps it's just as well that we haven't quite sold our house in … Continue reading An old war horse bows out

The Trials & Tribulations of Non League

Du Malone writes: Recently I was given the opportunity to review blog posts for Score More FM’s ‘Posts of the moment’ column. I finished the review by picking a new blog, ‘A thistle and the vale’ from JDH. I suggested it would be worth following.

Well, this opening narrative post doesn’t disappoint. I’m reblogging it here because I like the liveliness of the writing.

JDH Football Manager Blogs

Jonathan Hogan

The Scottish Football calendar has drawn to a close, and whilst many outlets will be focused on the blue half of Glasgow’s return to the mountain top, this piece will focus on a team still trudging up towards basecamp. Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale, are the team I will be focussing on today and their season in the East of Scotland League Conference B.

The pre-season started in a hectic manner, with the appointment of, recently retired Lowland League journeyman, Greig Porter as Manager. Having funded himself through his coaching courses but with only a short player/manager stint at Rosyth FC, this seemed like a risky manoeuvre. This sense of risk was heightened when at his initial press conference to a single journalist he stated his coaching influences where “Bielsa, Pep and Poch” and further described himself as a “pragmatic Bielsa” (surely an oxymoron as the influential Argentine can…

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The sweet spot in contract negotiation

Du Malone writes: This post is the seventh of an extended series on the topic of contracts in FM. The post is designed to make explicit a theme that is implicit through much of this series. When you're negotiating terms with a player or member of staff, you can sometimes get trapped in a zero-sum … Continue reading The sweet spot in contract negotiation

On the unintended consequences of contracts

Du Malone writes: This is the sixth of a series of posts on the theme of contracts, negotiation, and agents on FM. You decide to give your defender a hefty clean-sheet bonus. That should help: the more clean sheets we keep, the more points we're likely to accumulate. What could possibly go wrong? And you … Continue reading On the unintended consequences of contracts

Two ways to read a contract

Du Malone writes: This is the fifth of a series of posts on the theme of contracts, negotiation, and agents on FM. This post presents a lesson that I learned in my professional life. I'm not 100% certain, but I'm pretty sure that I learned it from a book by a literary agent -- Carole … Continue reading Two ways to read a contract

A despondent manager relies on tobacco that comes all the way from Bulgaria

Four in the afternoon, late in November, 2019. Scene: Grigor Pasha's apartment, Mykolaiv, Ukraine. Pasha is sitting in an arm chair, with a black coffee and a pensive look. He looks so much older. He is preparing his pipe, which he has recently taken to smoking again. Well, let's be honest. I'm not in a … Continue reading A despondent manager relies on tobacco that comes all the way from Bulgaria

The final whistle’s gone…

23 November 2019. Southern Ukraine's equivalent of Final Score. ANCHOR: at Mykolaiv. REPORTER: Yes - and the home team has recorded its first win in twelve games, 2-1 vs. Girnyk Sport. A second goal, after 53 minutes, by Mykolaiv's poacher, Kravchenko, was the only goal in the second half -- like his first, a first-time … Continue reading The final whistle’s gone…

The final kick of the half at Central Stadium

23 November 2019. Southern Ukraine's equivalent of Final Score. ANCHOR: The half-time whistle's gone at Mykolaiv. REPORTER: Yes - and it's real drama here. Right on the stroke of half-time, with Mykolaiv one-nil down to visitors Girnyk-Sport, Mykolaiv's target man, Bugay, played a dinky little through-ball into the penalty area for poacher Kravchenko to convert … Continue reading The final kick of the half at Central Stadium

We need to make sure we don’t get complacent

Scene: Breakfast room, home of Girnyk-Sport manager, in Horishni Plavni, central Ukraine. Dramatic personae: Manager; his daughter; his son. DAUGHTER: You know, Dad, I'm looking forward to your winter break. MANAGER: Pleased to hear it. Any particular reason? DAUGHTER: Well, often I don't look forward to it. I mean, if the team you're managing isn't … Continue reading We need to make sure we don’t get complacent

We can turn this round. The fightback begins HERE!

SCENE I: First thing, 26 September 2019 -- the day after Mykolaiv have been dumped out of the Ukranian Cup. The manager's office. Dramatis personae: Grigor Pasha (manager); Anatoliy Didenko (assistant manager); Roman Chumak (goalkeeper coach). PASHA: I thought we'd get together and talk about how to approach the next few days. [Nods of agreement.] … Continue reading We can turn this round. The fightback begins HERE!