Director of football .... Who’s to blame?

Apologies if this has been covered before on here, but with the DOF being a new role at our club it’s not something we would have encountered before!
Who takes responsibility??
Fast forward 25 games into next season & we’re sat 20th in League 2 … who foots the blame? Taylor might be the best young manager around but Fullarton has recruited poorly or equally JF could have recruited brilliantly but Taylor’s not up to it?? Obviously this is a hypothetical question but it does open up a blame game mentality if things don’t go right??

Was the previous setup any less confusing? Clarke was responsible for the good performances. When it went wrong, he used to say he was responsible, but clearly didn’t think he was. Dutton, it seems , made all our better signings, but had nothing to do with the others.

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As Donald Southerlands character said in Kellys Heroes ‘All these negative waves’


I would say it’s a simple answer as to who is to blame, and that will be the DoF and the Head / Assistant Coach.

They are brought in and have a budget they will have agreed to work to. Whatever goals they are set by LP, if they fail to meet them then it’s on their heads after agreeing them.

The DoF probably bears the brunt as it was his responsibility to source the coaching team.

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Bonser normally.


Jesus Christ, are we really already figuring out who’s going to be held to account if things don’t go right? It’s an entirely new structure, with what will be an entirely new team, it’s likely we won’t absolutely charge out the gate.

Give the guy a chance, FFS


Personally I hope we ditch this blame game mentality from Clarke and Dutton. I don’t wanna hear anymore excuses of boys and men and the wrong mentality etc. we lose and win collectively. When we lose it’s everybody fault from the manager , coaches and players and when we win it’s everybody hard work. The dof and coach will get the pressure when results aren’t up to scratch but let’s drop this media circus after every game. Just come out and say we wasn’t good enough today and move on.


This is the sort of answer I was looking for :+1:t3: This is exactly how it should be :+1:t3:


You for tempting fate :crazy_face:


Depends what goes wrong. There can be many different reasons why you’re ■■■■ so it just depends. I don’t think us looking for who to blame before a ball is kicked is helpful though.


I’ll just blame Gamble and Mole like I always do, pair of ■■■■■

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Swifty (well we all know who’s behind the beak)…

Hopefully all the big key decisions will be made and agreed by the the DoF and the Head / Assistant Coach and rubber stamped by El Pomletto ?


It used to be Merson

And there I was using 25 games as a benchmark :roll_eyes::roll_eyes:

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Why not include MT in that he must have had some input ,

Have you been today ?

You raised a very good question back in May that few of us gave much attention to. The assumption has been that JF is competent. If it turns out he isn’t we have a major problem on our hands. I’m still hopeful we will be ok.

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The DoF role is a fine concept. The gap from footballing matters to board room often a chasm of understanding and knowledge that needs to be bridged. In a very transient football world it also offers some stability. At our place obviously all of the transience is on the football field and very little in the boardroom. The buck seems to have a cap on where it stops so having a board member who is a football person is good.

I’ve no issue with a rookie manager either. Our best managers have been rookies. Like players, the only way to get a really good one is to grow our own.

From a million miles away from those two appointments it looks like we have made decisions rooted in character. Not a change in philosophy as Dutton was given the job based upon a “moral compass”. Which is fine. In fact it is better than fine it is a very good foundation upon which to build any club, business or team. A “no nob head policy” is definitely wise - as the Dean Keates era unfortunately demonstrates.

But that has to be supplemented by a diligence around the ruthless reality of the fourth division. A really thorough and deep exploration of the answers to two questions “what do you know about the fourth division in 2021?” and “how do you win football matches in the fourth division in 2021”. If I were interviewing those would have been the two questions I’d have asked pre-interview and I’d have expected any credible candidate to have done a thorough analysis of last year’s promoted clubs. What that analysis would have shown is that success at this level at this time is built upon some really pragmatic basics rather than anything beautiful. Cambridge neutered games in the hope Mullin would get a chance and if he did, he’d score. Cheltenham - set piece demons. Morecambe - allow games to become defence versus attack. Let them have the ball 70% of the time and frustrate the heart and legs off the opposition.

The Taylor/Fullerton way seems to be romantically purist. All the players who signed said stuff like “I love how he sees the game”. I would too. Possession, pass and move, pass out from the back, dynamic formation. That’s what appears to be the footballing “philosophy” of Fullerton and Taylor. Again supremely laudable. But who plays like that and succeeds at this level? I think Salford came closest but ultimately failed. Huge budget to attract good footballers but still failed. And it fails because the switch from philosophy to reality from training ground to match day is monumental. The reality is brutal. Mentally and physically bullied. Gamesmanship, opposition managers who know the territory like the back of their hands and players literally scrapping for their livelihoods. In many ways it is horrible.

I really hope we grilled both candidates around that reality and how they would win at this level with the resources we have and then supplemented the presented “philosophies” with questions around proof points of who succeeds in the lower reaches by implementing similar philosophies and how they overcome those brutal realities of life down here.

In summary - the DoF role is right. Time will tell whether we got the right person and subsequently whether he got his first appointment right. The early signs are of two people with firm beliefs in how the game should be played but a completely unproven and maybe naive understanding of how it all works at this level. And already there seem to be at least a couple of players who are taking the piss out of that naivety.


Possibly the most insightful, reasoned and erudite post I’ve ever seen on here. Well done.

I also agree entirely with the analysis - the best footballing setup, and the best setup to succeed in this division are not necessarily the same thing, and I think that’s one of the things that are wrong here at the moment.