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Saints Set To Appoint New Director Of Football
Tuesday, 26th Nov 2019 10:50

The Daily Echo is reporting that the club are about to appoint a new director of football in the next few hours.

Saints are set to appoint former head of the Academy at St Mary's Matt Crocker to the role of director of football after he resigned from his current role at the Football Association, although he may not actually be able to start full time till early 2020, depending on his notice period.

Crocker joined Saints in 2006 and spent 7 years in the job and helped develop a number of star names over the years as the club went on a roller coaster ride down to League one and then back to the Premier League.

At the FA he was Head of Development a post he held for his six years in the organisation.

Now he will return to the club with the same title as Saints’ former director of football operations, Ross Wilson, but his role will be more like Les Reed’s overseeing the entire footballing side of things.

This will not be the last appointment though, the club is still looking to appoint someone to run the player recruitment side of things and there could also be a change in the coaching side with the club having recognised that their current coaching set up for the first team is both too inexperienced and with little knowledge of the Premier League itself.

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legendDave added 11:13 - Nov 26
I can’t help but feel underwhelmed already by this appointment. Matt is certainly a good academy leader - you can see what he/it achieved over the years he was with us before - however, it’s not academy leadership we need.
A Director of Football Operations role has to be different - broader and directly impacting the first team. Does he really have the experience to appoint the manager, approve the signings and make the big calls when things go wrong?
We need experienced heads leading the football side - not just good, but inexperienced people. This so feels like our biggest issue at the moment in the club.

misterg added 12:21 - Nov 26
I think we should be happy that something is actually happening and at least it is someone who wants to come back to the Club not leave it.
Key question is who does report Ralph report to and explain why things are going so badly wrong and what he is doing about it.


underweststand added 15:21 - Nov 26
perhaps... legend dave... is focusing too much on Crocker's past and not his achievements since he left us.

Yes - he survived a dark period in the club's history, when the first team was poor, whilst his Academy flourished (successes like; Bale, Walcott etc ..we know the list - don't we).

In fact Crocker might have been credited with more success had the likes of Surman, Dyer, and McGoldrick not been forced out during the period of the 2009 bankrupcy.
Tyrone Mings recently commented on his time with us, when he was released after Cortese cut back the Academy facilities. I recall being saddened when I heard that Crocker had moved onto the England job...where I think he has been working with a higher level than ordinary Academy teenagers..(although looking at Southgate's current England might be forgiven for asking when some will take their GCSE's.?

NO - Crocker moved on to work at the highest level and I'm greatly encouraged to think he will return to Saints with more experience and wisdom than when he left 6 years ago.


SaintPaulVW added 16:30 - Nov 26
On paper seems like a good choice. Only time will tell. One box ticked, about 5 others still need addressing.

I just hope all these board and coaching staffing problems have been caused by too much trust being placed in someone to manage, rather than no real interest being shown at the top until the problems were glaring. Just don't want this to keep happening.

Again only time will tell.

legendDave added 18:58 - Nov 26
I don’t disagree with you on his achievements at all underweststand - he has certainly proved himself when it comes to his development of players, both for saints and England. I expect he had an influence over loads of players aside to those you list.

If he was coming back to lead our academy then I would be over the moon.

But he’s not (or not solely at least). He is going to be responsible for hiring and firing managers, recruiting and shifting players amongst everything else. Has he experience in that? No.

I absolutely wish him all the best and hope that I am proven completely and utterly wrong. But, I remain seriously worried about the lack of real experience he and the rest of the management team have in the transfer market.

1970 added 22:09 - Nov 26
getting any one to fill the vacant posts at st marys has got to be positive but this does seem like a cheap promotion of sorts but best of luck to Matt and welcome back,as mentioned only another five or so to go may be we can get lawrie mac back to help ralph,
Underweststand I don't think cortese's "cutting back the youth facilities" is quite right after all he was in charge when the staplewood grade A academy was opened wasn't he? May be I'm wrong but I don't think so.

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