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  • Ollie

    I asked Aidan Magee from Skysports his views on the Ollie sacking on another FB Page.
    Below is his brilliantly crafted response:

    Paul Dowling Have to say I'm disappointed.

    I've read closely some of the comments on here and on other QPR pages on Facebook and it's encouraging that most of our fans - usually the ones who attend most weeks - disapprove of the decision to remove Ian Holloway.

    I must confess that last summer, I feared relegation and thought we'd finish with fewer than 35 points. That's certainly where our spending should have left us.

    To secure safety by March, having made some very decent signings in the last 18 months, introducing some promising young players to the team, and slightly raising last season's finishing position and points total is very good going.

    To do so beating Wolves, Cardiff, Aston Villa and Sheffield United, when they were second in the table, and fighting back from 2-0 down at Fulham - the best team in the Championship since Christmas - to get a draw, is also worthy of credit.

    Yet doing so on a spend of £530,000 this season is, frankly, pretty remarkable.

    That barely gets you a two bedroom apartment in Chiswick. And even then, you'll be lucky to get your own parking space.

    In 1996/97, we paid nearly £8million in what's now the Championship for John Spencer, Gavin Peacock, Mike Sheron, Matthew Rose, Steve Slade, Paul Murray and Steve Morrow - then another £500,000 on Vinnie Jones the following season.

    For the avoidance of any doubt - this was 21 years ago; Princess Diana was still alive and Hong Kong was still sovereign British territory.

    I have repeatedly asked during conversations on Facebook this season who the critics of Holloway would have signed for £530,000.

    Nobody has replied with a name. Not even one.

    Even Holloway winning an average of one in three of his games since returning to the club warrants a mention when so many of those matches near the end of both campaigns were earmarked for looking at squad players.

    Don't get me wrong, there have been low points in the last 18 months.

    The away form has been very poor, certain players have not markedly improved as we hoped and the football hasn't always been attractive to watch.

    Even allowing for this, it's impossible to argue that Holloway did a bad job.

    In fact, he did a very good job.

    I spend my professional existence talking to players, managers, agents, ex-pros, directors, owners, club media officials, fellow journalists and many others within football. All of them will tell you how critical recruitment is in the modern game.

    Without good recruitment, you can't achieve the quality of individual nor the "culture" needed within a squad - and the most common result is a handful of disaffected players who undermine the manager and invariably get him sacked.

    The key determinant of effective recruitment is money. And we don't have much of that. Only three clubs in our division spent less on transfer fees than we did.

    There are a few who dispute how much we've spent, and point to a dwindling number of high earners still present in the squad as part of the expenditure.

    The decisions not to renew the contracts of Jamie Mackie, James Perch and Nedum Onuoha make clear the club's intention to move on many of the players earning five-figure weekly sums.

    There have been some horrific mistakes made in the transfer market since 2011. We all know about them. Indeed; we're still paying for them in so many ways.

    At some point, though, we have to move on from those appalling errors of judgement and look at what is being done to remedy the situation. We can't change the past, so let's live in the now.

    There are some who contribute to QPR debates on social media who don't grasp how little we've spent, and just how vital that is when assessing where the club, the team and the management are at.

    It's absolutely fine for fans on here to immerse themselves in all things Rangers - we have careers, families and mortgages absorbing our time and headspace and we can't always preoccupy ourselves with the affairs of our Championship rivals.

    A big part of my job, however, is knowing what goes on elsewhere in football.

    And if I were to offer any advice to fans who use only scorelines and soundbites to form their opinion, I'd urge them to take a closer look at other clubs in our division and match what they've done against what Holloway has done.

    Leeds United is a good starting point. They've spent £25.6million since last summer. They also took two Premier League loans.
    The average wage of a Premier League player is now a staggering £50,817-a-week, which means that when a Championship player signs from that level on loan, even if you're only paying a percentage of the salary, you're probably placing that player among your highest earners.

    Needless to say, a win at Elland Road last week would have seen us finish higher in the table than Leeds. As it was, they got four points more than our 56. It appears £25.6m doesn't buy you much these days.

    Elsewhere in Yorkshire, Sheffield Wednesday spent £13.6m - including more than £10m on one player, Jordan Rhodes. We took four points off them.

    Further down the country, Birmingham splashed out £15.49m, brought in five Premier League loans and I'm told they are paying their goalkeeper David Stockdale £100,000-a-week after he joined on a free from Brighton.

    We did the 'double' over them and finished 10 points better off.

    Norwich spent £13.3m, with three top flight loans, to finish two places and four points above us in the league, but not before we beat them 4-1 on Easter Monday.

    Similarly, Reading invested £13.1m trying to bolster a squad which reached the Play-Off final at Wembley. They didn't take any Premier League loans but did sign two pretty expensive ones from the Championship in Chris Martin and Tommy Elphick - and all to finish 12 points below us in 20th.

    Continuing the theme, Nottingham Forest spent £6.6m and recruited four on loan from the top division, supplemented by the not-so-cheap free transfer of former QPR loanee Ben Watson from Watford.

    Forest would be considered lower end investors in the Championship, yet they've spent 12 times what we have, and finished one place below us.

    Sunderland spent twice what we did and brought in nine loans from the Prem. We all know what happened to them.

    Hull were supposed to be in meltdown in respect of ownership and expenditure. It didn't prevent £17.6m leaving their account. They may have beaten us 4-0 the other week but they still finished below us.

    At the top end, the sums reach truly eye-watering levels.

    Middlesbrough spent £50.4m and after losing their first leg Play-Off semi-final at home to Aston Villa, who boast a former England captain and Champions League winner on £100,000-a-week, they now have their work cut out to win through to the Play-Off final.

    Even those who laud Neil Warnock - a manager I respect greatly - for leading Cardiff to automatic promotion and, like me, feel he should have been given the QPR job when Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink got it, will be interested to hear that he spent £11.4m. A job very well done, yes - but still no fairytale.

    As documented above, we gave Holloway £530,000 to improve a squad which finished 18th the previous season.

    We signed one loan from the Premier League from a side promoted from the Championship - that was Brighton's Kazenga LuaLua. He hadn't played in the top division in nearly a decade since making a handful of appearances for Newcastle.

    He left us after a few months - no harm done, but he was no Alexsandar Mitrovic, who by the way cost Fulham £600,000 in loan fees alone! That's more than we spent in the entire season and he'll only be there for five months.

    So if our manager gets sacked for outperforming most of his counterparts with a budget of £530,000, which he spent shopping at the likes of Barnsley, Exeter and Linfield - what should happen to the managers of Leeds, Sheff Wed, Birmingham, Hull and even Barnsley, who parted with £5.7m and got relegated?

    I'm guessing they should all be burned at the stake?

    Or do we accept that, actually, we were employing an experienced guy with three promotions and two Play-Off final appearances under his belt, who knew his squad and its limitations, had intimate knowledge of players coming through, had an understanding of the Championship, spent his money exceptionally well and had an historic attachment to the club?

    His modest spending brought Luke Freeman, Josh Scowen, Matt Smith, Paul Smyth, Alex Baptiste and Ebere Eze to Loftus Road - all very sound acquisitions for various reasons.

    How many worthwhile signings can you think of from the previous five years before Holloway returned? Charlie Austin, Ryan Nelsen, Danny Simpson, Niko Kranjcar, Matt Phillips - and you could make a case for Richard Dunne and Rob Green.

    We'll be lucky to use the fingers on our second hand to count them because it's not long before you really have to start scraping the barrel.

    I met up with some senior QPR employees before the Leeds game last week, and one told me that while the season as a whole represented a very respectable achievement, it's unrealistic to expect to repeat it again next year without investment.

    The truth is that if we actually did have anything like a generous budget, we'd be attracting managers who aren't in the last chance saloon that Steve McClaren now finds himself in - one more bad job, and his days in front line management are probably done.

    I've met McClaren at Sky a few times and he's a likeable bloke. I've even spoken to him fairly recently about his time at QPR, which he thoroughly enjoyed.

    I'm doubtful that he can get more out of the squad than Holloway has. It all depends on whether he illicits the kind of response he got from his players while coaching Manchester United and QPR, and managing Middlesbrough, FC Twente, and during his first spell at Derby - rather than his unsuccessful periods with England, Wolfsburg, Forest, Newcastle and second time round at Derby.

    He's experienced, respected and has plenty to prove. If QPR continue not to support their managers financially and are up front about it from the start, then at least there will be few arguments over transfer policy.

    Perhaps, therefore, the job will be one that appeals to the very best of McClaren's coaching ability, which may work to our advantage.

    If not, and it transpires that Tony Fernandes has yet again been seduced by a big name, then it's sadly back to square one.
    Starts
    15-05-2018
    Ends
    16-05-2018
    Tony Fernandes Blue N White Army

  • #2
    Some very valid points in there and when you look at the stats regarding outlay on players it just goes to show how unpredictable the championship is. Teams have been trying to buy their way out of that league for years and failed.
    Ollie wasn’t as bad as some make out but I suppose it all boils down to whether anyone else we could have attracted could have done better. We’ll never really know the answer to that question.

    His overall stats were tarnished a bit by the tinkering he did at the end of both seasons and fair play to him for having the balls to do that. All managers know that ending the season on a downer puts pressure on their position as the owners take stock during the summer. Seems to me he was willing to risk his own position to try and move the club forwards by trying out different players. He did make some bizarre decisions during his time and some of the press conferences were cringeworthy but that’s Ollie for you.
    He’s won 3 promotions and reached 2 play offf finals being that way so I guess the point I’m making is he wasn’t perfect but there is a lot lot worse out there. Let’s hope to Christ we don’t end up with one of them.

    He'll regret it till his dying day, if ever he lives that long

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Itsonlyagame View Post
      Some very valid points in there and when you look at the stats regarding outlay on players it just goes to show how unpredictable the championship is. Teams have been trying to buy their way out of that league for years and failed.
      Ollie wasn’t as bad as some make out but I suppose it all boils down to whether anyone else we could have attracted could have done better. We’ll never really know the answer to that question.

      His overall stats were tarnished a bit by the tinkering he did at the end of both seasons and fair play to him for having the balls to do that. All managers know that ending the season on a downer puts pressure on their position as the owners take stock during the summer. Seems to me he was willing to risk his own position to try and move the club forwards by trying out different players. He did make some bizarre decisions during his time and some of the press conferences were cringeworthy but that’s Ollie for you.
      He’s won 3 promotions and reached 2 play offf finals being that way so I guess the point I’m making is he wasn’t perfect but there is a lot lot worse out there. Let’s hope to Christ we don’t end up with one of them.
      Agree with all that. I think if the issue was simply about replacing Ollie, which on the face of it looks bad (although it's not hard to make a case for it), then I'd generally agree with the OP. However it now looks like it's about a consortium taking over the club - or at least becoming involved - which is a whole different issue. You could then say Ollie's dismissal was ruthless, or you could call it pragmatic. Either way, he's gone. I'm sure we'll see a few more hagiographies like this one along the way, but I feel it's time to move on.


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      • #4
        Yes, I saw this on facebook yesterday so that is presumably that is you.
        Some very valid points there which concurs with my view that overall Ollie did ok given the circumstances.
        With the usual proviso about baffling team selections and whether he can push us on further though.

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        • #5
          My stance from the start has been he has done a good job and deserved to start the season as Manager. But as I'm sure Ollie knows ''that's football'. Money talks these days and those with the cash pull the strings. Ollie has left with his head held high. But we move on to another manager who will get slaughtered on MBs before the end of Sept.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by SheepRanger View Post
            My stance from the start has been he has done a good job and deserved to start the season as Manager. But as I'm sure Ollie knows ''that's football'. Money talks these days and those with the cash pull the strings. Ollie has left with his head held high. But we move on to another manager who will get slaughtered on MBs before the end of Sept.
            You give him that long do you

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            • #7
              I don’t like the immediate comment ‘usually the ones who attend most weeks’ ! Really does #### me off that unless you go every week your opinion is irrelevant. I see enough of Rangers to know the scenario and that Olly was the wrong appointment when they took him on and it alludes to his record being tarnished by end of season tinkering! Well what happened when we lost 6 on the spin between Oct and Dec 2016 etc etc. Add to that his insults to the fans who left the Brentford game early after 89 mins of being torn apart by your neighbours? Olly did a fine job first time around but coming back was a mistake, yes he did a job but we should have done better, end of and to me the last 18 months were not very enjoyable if I’m allowed to say that having only seen about 20 games.

              Comment


              • #8
                Have to disagree with the statement that most people who go to the games, think it's the wrong decision. As someone who goes home and away, I would say that is definitely not the case. Enough is enough of this constant changes and no show at away games seems to be the feeling of most people I talk to and that crap at Leeds would drive anyone away.

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                • #9
                  Very interesting. Fella makes some valuable points. Problem was that the squad, however assembled, was better than the position it finished. If it wasn’t for the insane persisting with 352, playing Washington and Mackie, and continually being a Tinkerman, we’d have finished higher. That, plus his emotionality, I think did for him. So as much as he had the significant achievements the SKy person records, there were significant self inflicted failures too.

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                  • #10
                    The club brought the new players through, not Ollie.

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                    • #11
                      It's not impossible to argue that Holloway did a bad job. Half of his job is away games and there is no denying he did a bad job

                      A look at our recent premiership history proves more money doesn't necessarily equal a better team. We spent less than past seasons but no doubt have spent what we have spent better.The plonker who wrote this quotes finishing higher than big spending Birmingham as an achievement... they finished 6th from bottom and Redknapp spent the cash ffs

                      As well as benefiting from the shrewdest transfer policy for some years from the clubs structure Holloway also was lucky enough to benefit from the best set of youngsters we've had for 20+ years

                      One of those, Furlong, was not played or played out of position in a 3-5-2 that wasted half a season and could never work as Kev Gallen pointed out for obvious to everyone but Holloway because we didn't have wing backs. Results improved when we changed that obvious error

                      He met about met expectations that had been lowered to his own poor performance this season (losing 7 of last 8 last year) but to use own words back in it's impossible to argue that this team wasn't capable of more this season.

                      While more might not have quite meant play offs. Next year or more likely year after it could so to me it makes sense to drop a manager that has become increasingly erratic, hot headed and incapable of making rational in game decisions or seeing what's clear to everyone else that a formation (3-5-2) or a player (Washington) aren't working.

                      For me no was the right time to bin a manager who isn't doing enough and recent evidence suggests won't do enough
                      Last edited by Route One; 16-05-2018, 07:55 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I think Aidan Magee's reply is spot on, Holloway was treated harshly and maybe should have been given more time.
                        I hope McLaren is bringing some sort of investment with him as it would certainly add some justification to Ollie's departure.
                        That's the last time I shall comment on Holloway's dissmall, as I feel it's been covered enough now, and I am now very keen to see McLaren appointed.
                        Last edited by Darkranger; 16-05-2018, 08:07 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Olly View Post
                          The club brought the new players through, not Ollie.
                          The manager still has to get into their heads though.
                          Look at all the wasted talent out there who could have done better if they’d reacted in the right way.
                          Personally, I think Ollies forte has always been galvanising teams and getting them to seemingly outperform, although it hasn’t worked for him everywhere.
                          As 77 says though, could someone else have got more out of our current crop of players. There are some much more tactically astute managers out there but some of them might not have some of the others tributes needed to work with no funds. Many of the names mentioned probably would have turned their noses up at us, although you could argue that’s because of not wanting to work with a DOF, an issue which ultimately falls back onto the owners lap for choosing to employ one in the first place.
                          There’s no right or wrong answer here imo as we’ll never know how another manager might have faired last season and we’ll never know how Ollie would have faired next season.
                          The owners decided to twist and fair play to them. I’m sure it wasn’t easy and they’ve at least picked a good time, as in before pre-season. I just really hope they give serious considerstion to the next appointment.
                          He'll regret it till his dying day, if ever he lives that long

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                          • #14
                            The OP is a real opener in terms of money given to Holloway so based on that alone he did a good job, He could have done a much better job had he played a system that suited the players he had at his disposal. What I do find quite interesting is Holloway not making any comment or statement on his departure? Even just a thank you to the fans as that is something he would normally do.

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                            • #15
                              I was thinking the same the other day, as in how come he hadn’t said anything. I am slightly worried for the bloke. He was on the edge of reason anyway so to then be sacked by the club he’s so passionate about, i just hope it doesn’t send him over that edge.
                              Maybe with all that happened recently in his personal life he is finally allowing himself to grieve properly and not even thinking about football. I really hope he bounces back from all this, he’s too much of a character to blend into the background.
                              He'll regret it till his dying day, if ever he lives that long

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