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Graham Potter


Hello new pod.

Since it often seems to be the case that the lack of English managers gets bemoaned, and specially the lack of English managers in Europe, perhaps it’s time to have a look at Graham Potter at Östersund in the Swedish top tier.

When he took over as head coach in 2011 Östersund was languishing in the Swedish fourth tier, averaging around 1000-3000 people per game. Since 2016 they play in the top tier and performing as one of the top half clubs. They are the recent winners of the Swedish Cup which gave the a place in the play-offs for the Europa League. Their they have defeated Galatasaray, Fola Esch of Luxemburg and PAOK Tessaloniki to reach the Europa League group stages.

To put it into context, it’s as if Notts County climbed four tiers in six seasons, established themselves as a top half premier league club, won the FA cup and then won three play-off games in Europe (Galatasaray being one of them) to get to the Europa league group stage.

John Petterson

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You can read more about Graham Potter via our friends at The Set Pieces:
http://thesetpieces.com/interviews/firing-ostersunds-victory-galatasaray-english-midfielder-jamie-hopcutt-hopes-finish-job/
http://thesetpieces.com/world-football/meet-english-manager-facing-galatasaray-europa-league/


Baggage

Dear Jimbo and Julien

Love the new show.

During the podcast of 28/08/2017 you discussed both the potential success and dangers of signing a player like Serge Aurier. I’ve always been fascinated by players of this nature, with loads of talent coupled with bags o’ baggage.

Comparing players like Keane and Cantona on the one hand, with players like Ravel Morrison and Mario Balotelli on the other, it’s clear that, in some cases, it’s possible for players with a penchant for problems to flourish, given the right circumstances and guidance.

I’m intrigued by the specific elements that contribute to respective paths taken by players in both categories. Would love to hear your thoughts about the contributing factors for successes and failures.

Jonny Sachar – Cape Town

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VAR and Peace

The VAR experiment is showing some good and some bad aspects, but people are still criticising the officials.

I think we should use the tennis methodology of allowing each side appeals until they fail three times. The decision to use VAR is then passed to the managers

Big deal you say. Well, picture this – Eden Hazard (or Ashley Young etc) does yet another swan dive – Conte is down to his last appeal and doesn’t want to waste it on an obvious – so the player is left with people saying “Even your manager thought that was a dive” How’s that for humiliation

Or imagine Mark Hughes doing an after game interview and when he inevitably starts blaming the officials he is asked “Why didn’t you use your VAR challenges for those incidents then?”
There would be so much potential embarrassment for players and managers that they might even cheat less.

I think it would stop a lot of moaning, and it would be hilarious.

Thank you for your time – and the podcast
Jeremy Martin

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