Friday, January 14, 2011

Is Martin O'Neill Right For West Ham?

Martin O'Neill is still being touted as the man to replace the unlucky Avram Grant at the helm of West Ham United. The former Aston Villa manager is reported to be mulling over the possibility of being the Irons' new manager.

Avram Grant has always been unlucky in the English Premier League. He seems to be the unwanted child although he has worked wonders at the clubs that he previously managed. Apparently a Champions League final and an FA Cup final appearance are not measures of success. Just goes to show how much importance is put on Premier League survival in this day and age.

But is Martin O'Neill the right man for West Ham?

I rate O'Neill as a top Premiership manager as you can read in this article. He is one of few British managers to have won a trophy in the modern era. He lifted unfashionable Leicester City to dizzy heights in the Premiership, turning Emile Heskey into a major Premiership force. The man's greatest European achievement was to oversee Celtic's adventure into the 2003 UEFA Cup Final where they lost to Jose Mourinho's Porto.

His overall win percentage is 53% which includes a dominating time in Scotland. For Villa, O'Neill posted a 42% win percentage, winning 80 matches out of 190.He brought respectability to Aston Villa at a time when the Villans were hovering near the relegation trapdoor. O'Neill could do the same for West Ham.

Jamie Kanwar, editor at Liverpool-Kop is a strong advocator of Martin O'Neill's managerial qualities. He has this to say about the Ulsterman,
" When O'Neill arrived, Villa were 2 places outside the relegation zone. In his first season, he stabilised things and stopped the rot (moving the club 5 places up the table); in his next 3 seasons, O'Neill solidified Villa in the top half of the table, with three sixth place finishes in a row. Given Villa's resources/second-tier status/ability to attract second-tier players, 6th is arguably the best the club could hope for."
"O'Neill creates *stability* at clubs he manages. For example: At Villa, he has bought 28 players; 24 of them are still at the club."
Having said that, I have a few concerns about O'Neill.
  • Gives up when things get rough
  • No Plan B when Plan A fails in matches
  • Does not have extensive knowledge on European-based players
  • Old-school manager, archaic tactics at times
What Martin O'Neill will bring is his enthusiasm and motivational skills into the Hammers' dressing room. This is the man who brought the very best out of Heskey, Gareth Barry, Agbonlahor and Ashley Young. He has proven record of working within budgets at Wycombe and Leicester. His combative nature and  infectious emotional touchline displays would go down well with the West Ham faithful. Yes, getting O'Neill will be a step in the right direction for West Ham. He is exactly the type of high-profile manager that Gold and Sullivan plump for.

Sullivan and Gold typically gets their managerial appointment spot-on. This article gives an interesting insight into how much experience and credibility as football club owners the duo have. SuGo are also not known to be hasty in their decisions and do give sufficient time to their managers to get things right. I expect Avram Grant to remain as manager until the end of the season, no matter what happens this season.

Managerial uncertainties aside, what West Ham really need is a proven goalscorer just like what Mark Noble has pointed out. The Irons are crying out for someone like Newcastle's Andy Carroll who can clearly make things happen all on his own!  Even more controversially, would the mercurial ex-Hammer Craig Bellamy be that Tevez-like spark that West Ham need to stave off relegation?


Anonymous said...

Doubt he'd take the job. But if he did, he'd be there for a couple of years and take you up to about mid table. He wouldn't be in it for the long term (unless you got some new mega £$£$£$ owners).

Anonymous said...

You are talking a total load of rubbish!

Aston Villa founded football in the UK and there would have been no league but for Aston Villa! Considering how many league titles and Cups they have won, and the fact that they are one of the only British Clubs to have one both the European Cup and the European Super Cup you do really show how totally ignorant that you are.

They are as good as any club in the UK but not the world as the Worlds No. 1 club is Real Madrid and the No. 2 Club is Barcelona.

You will soon be trying to kid me that Chelsea and Manchester City are big clubs! Well just how many league titles and Cups have they won?

Well you have got your answer. So don't you dare ever call Aston Villa a 2nd Tier Club. Still it is at least better than being a bott tier Football reporter!

MauvaisGarcon said...

I've got to agree with Anoymous 2, in some respects. As a Villa fan (who doesn't live in Birmingham anymore) i'm fully aware that the current Sky\Talk advert driven football media thought football was invented in 1992, Villa came 2nd that year by the way, so quoting a fan of a former massive club & sky 4 member doesn't shock me. If the Sky\Talk advert lot got there way there would only be 4 teams 'allowed to win'. If O'Neill goes to west ham he'll destroy the way they play football. At least West Ham are a 'real' club. Followed by real fans rather than media muppet glory fans... but i exspect O'neill to wait for the man city job. UTV.

Anonymous said...

What Wet Spam will get with MON is a man who is stubborn to the point of idiocy, has no sense of financial management, has no loyalty, is unprofessional and is so selfish and lacking in any respect for his employer and the fans that he walks out on a club five days before the start of the season. MON and Sullivan - what a dream team.

Anonymous said...

O'Neill wont become west ham manager, and even if he did dont think hes good for your club

im a villa fan and tbh i was never realy taken by MON, he never rests players, he always picks the same 11, he will only play the players he signs and sell anything u have half decent (Gary Cahill, Liam Ridgewell etc) and has no interest in playing youth, villa in my opinion have the strongest and best youth in the country, i mean did he even train with the likes of Marc Albrighton, Barry Bannan, Ciaran Clark etc, he never gave 1 a look in the first team and they have been by far our best players this season!

many people may see him as a great manager but he is an unfair manager and a nasty piece of work

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