Grigor Pasha writes: June 2023. The prolonged winter break in Bulgaria means that we don't get much time off in the close season in the summer. Still, I've found a few days to catch up with Mariya, my half-sister. She's come up the coast from Burgas to stay with me for in Balchik. When she … Continue reading Football manager: the grumpy old man edition
Grigor Pasha writes: August 2021. Early in my third season at Neftochimic 1962. From the intake in the spring we signed six players. Of these, at least four have been genuinely glistening. First, the boy Slavov. He's remarkably mature for a goalkeeper of his age -- good, in particular, at making decisions. He's already got … Continue reading Golden generation? Well, certainly some nuggets there
Grigor Pasha writes: June 2021. In a couple of previous posts I outlined my managerial strategy. In one I argued that there are two types of football manager -- the hunter-gatherer and the cultivator. I explained that, contrary to my personality, I'd decided that the optimum strategy here at Neftochimic 1962 was the latter. I … Continue reading Assessing strategy for club development: a worked example
Grigor Pasha writes: As I explained in my previous post, my club development is to seek to meet the board's expectation of a top-half finish whilst, crucially, giving the youngsters in the squad the opportunity to develop. The agricultural approach to club management This makes me, in my role as manager of Neftochimic 1962, a … Continue reading There are two types of football manager: which are you?
Grigor Pasha writes: The situation, in my second season here on the Black sea coast with Neftochimic, as I see it is this: in the foreseeable future we're not going to have enough money to buy success. Even though my spending on wages is way below budget, we're losing money every month. The way this … Continue reading In which a football manager makes a medium-term wager
Grigor Pasha writes: When Nik Krastev, our Head of Youth Development (HOYD), told me that the 2019-20 youth intake had the makings of a 'golden generation', I took it with a pinch of salt. When I arrived, his main job was coach: HOYD was his secondary role. When I offered him the opportunity to become … Continue reading Not a golden generation, more like stainless steel
Grigor Pasha writes: Given that we outperformed expectation last season, finished second in the Bulgarian second, you might expect me to make little change to the squad. Just strengthen here and there. But I went for radical change instead. My reasoning was: many players' contracts were expiring those whose contracts I wanted most to renew … Continue reading революция (REVOLUTION) IN BULGARIA
Du Malone writes: I hesitate to reblog two posts on the same day, but I have just come across this and thinks it’s excellent. The main attraction for me is the hard-headedness of the cost/benefit analysis of youth development. I’m also intrigued by the developing pragmatism vs dogma theme: I hope they’ll be more of that.
“I think I’ve seen that film. With the two dopey guys and that Mexican lassie wi’ the big -“
“Dogmatic! I said I can’t be so dogmatic, Keith. Nothing to do with a film”
My exasperation came from trying to explain that with our budget and the club’s vision of youth development we had to be flexible with our tactics and our economics. To be more pragmatic and less fixated on my own tactical preference.
“Besides Mallrats is a much better film”
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