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Thread: Weekend Fixtures April 30th to May 3rd

  1. #201
    International Prospect Nesta99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WeAreRovers View Post
    No surprise I disagree completely with Nesta too. Bradley is bizarrely maligned/under-rated by fans of other clubs possibly down to simple if understandable anti-Rovers sentiment. The view from within is that he has, along with Stephen McPhail, done and continues to do a stellar job. The much-mocked 'project' has born fruit exactly as planned.

    To take one of Nesta's points, succession planning at Rovers is constantly ongoing, of the older players Nesta mentions - O'Brien, Finn, Gannon, Mannus - only Mannus doesn't have a replacement lined-up. Gannon has Max Murphy chomping at his heels, Joey has Hoare, Pico, Grace and Scales all competing for 3 CH berths while Finn is now largely a squad player with a leadership role.

    Bradley has also built that squad painstakingly over the last few years bringing kids through, utilising players versatility - Scales at LWB, Greene up front, Finner - rehabilitating players with bad reputations - Jack, Burkey and now Mandriou. As for fans being unhappy with the midfield chopping and changing it's much more of a case that we are all wondering what our best CM pairing is. Looking more and more like it's Watts and Gary O'Neill who incidentally is also very, very under-rated, best player in the league for my money but his unflashiness means he goes unnoticed.

    Bottom line is that we are very happy with Stephen Bradley but non-plussed at the constant under-mining of his achievements, even the all time unbeaten record of 31 league games which is a phenomenal achievement has been under-played. Ah well, we'll live.
    I may have pinched a nerve along the way, not a big leap from Cork fans' gripes on not getting the accolades for the 2017 double. I actually dont have a particular anti-Rovers sentiment any more than who is the team to beat in any given season. Would I like Dundalk to eclipse Rover's title haul, of course (Cup haul not in my lifetime sadly). I enjoy that whatever little media coverage LoI gets these days its not Shamrock Rovers centric. The late great Jim Murphy stated that Dundalk's single biggest achievement was surviving. As a regional team we have been there abouts with a major trophy every decade since becoming DFC. But my opinions on Rovers are certainly not based on some historical resentment. I think Bradley has achieved what every manager wants, I just dont think that he has been 'spectacular' in his methods but nothing wrong with that if the ends have justified the means. Keith Long would have won a league with Rovers given the resources at hand, maybe even over a shorter space of time. He has kept Bohs on the road irrespective of player drain. For the record I'd love to see Croly as manager at Dundalk as I think he is what the club needs overall. Former Rovers man to Dundalk rather than the other way round!
    Last edited by Nesta99; 06/05/2021 at 2:47 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalymountrower View Post
    I would be interested to learn what Keith Long has been " spoofing" about. He may lack of ambition and fails to win the big games, but can`t say I would describe him as a spoofer . Then again managers quickly fall in and fall out of favour, Stephen O Donnell was being pilloried last year for being out of his depth and he is now apparently a footballing genius for having a successful opening third of the season.
    Replied to this and deleted the post while trying to edit. I'm not interneting well....

    I was only using Long as a way to highlight how rival supporters view other managers more unfavourably than they probably should. Sort of playing off the previous back and forth about the Dundalk managerial situation getting more attention etc.

    'Spoofer' is the term I most often see used by Bohs fans to describe Bradley and Long may he spoof....

    FWIW I think Long and Croly are doing a good job although I do get a bit sick of hearing how they "aren't getting the credit they deserve" every single week on every podcast and broadcast. The new line seems to be that they are the only LOI mgmt team who has to deal with losing their best players...which is always funny to hear from the mouths of the same people who then go on to highlight how weak Rovers look without Jack Byrne and Aaron McEneff.

    I can see why people don't like Bradley. He's the Rovers manager and he does stick the boot sometimes in interviews. The Sligo game this year is a good example. He said afterwards that we had enough chances to win two games and that rankled a few heads. I get that. Probably could have been more gracious. But then he'd praised Sligo all week in the build up and let's be honest, probably doesn't have too much goodwill towards one of the clubs who were messing about last season when we were trying to restart and his team was on course to win it. He also tends to praise his team in the media. Probably to build confidence or get new players to buy into the system we play. The lad is still only 36....he's a baby in managerial terms. If he was managing a lower profile club he'd be lauded but.....such is life. No one likes us, we don't care etc.....

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  4. #203
    International Prospect Nesta99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Darwin View Post
    True, some Sligo fans on here have been unsuccessfully trying to cultivate a rivalry with Finn Harps since we stopped caring about them. Now that they're good again they're allowed try have a rivalry with us.
    Think it was a Bohs chant that confirmed we were back in the mix 'We hate Shamrock Rovers, We hate Dundalk too (insert a rival club)', the Dundalk was replaced with Shelbourne eg as we languished with re-election to the league until one season we were back at the dawn of a golden era, relevant and hated by others again
    Last edited by Nesta99; 06/05/2021 at 2:45 PM.

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  6. #204
    First Team WeAreRovers's Avatar
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    Nesta - Wasn't aiming that at you personally, I disagree with you but can see that it's a genuinely held opinion, no issues with that. It's more general bemusement at the lack of credit Bradley gets (compared to the hilariously OTT lauding of Keith Long for instance) and none of us are griping whatsoever, a zen-like contentment being the current mood at Rovers.

    Deep down Cork fans knew that Caulfield's style was awful and were very chippy about it. Not a criticism that could be aimed at Stephen Bradley's style of football. As ontheotherhand says Bradley is a pup in managerial terms. He is doing his growing up in public while collecting trophies and laying solid foundations along the way. It's all good.
    No One Likes Us, We Don't Care

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  8. #205
    Seasoned Pro sbgawa's Avatar
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    I think the chopping and changing is deliberate attempt to rotate and have a team that is capable of winning a long league with inevitable injures and suspensions.
    Also Europe is a factor, if Rovers win the first round of the CL they are guaranteed 8 weeks in a row (inc the 2 CL wks) as a minimum in Europe and if they win any 1 of the next 3 rounds then it will be group stages with another 6 weeks (maybe two after season over) so they need a squad that can play 2 games a week as cancelling games will be impossible for that many weeks.
    I think he knows his first 11 but needs to keep everyone involved.
    Crash out of CL and you might see a very settled 11

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    International Prospect Nesta99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WeAreRovers View Post
    Nesta - Wasn't aiming that at you personally, I disagree with you but can see that it's a genuinely held opinion, no issues with that. It's more general bemusement at the lack of credit Bradley gets (compared to the hilariously OTT lauding of Keith Long for instance) and none of us are griping whatsoever, a zen-like contentment being the current mood at Rovers.

    Deep down Cork fans knew that Caulfield's style was awful and were very chippy about it. Not a criticism that could be aimed at Stephen Bradley's style of football. As ontheotherhand says Bradley is a pup in managerial terms. He is doing his growing up in public while collecting trophies and laying solid foundations along the way. It's all good.
    Very fair point on Bradley's age as a manager, tbh I didnt take it under consideration. Nah nothing personal taken, football would be damn boring if everyone agreed!! Maybe I find Bradley strangely bland and his wind-ups contrived or just too obvious. Taking nothing away from winning the cup and league the year after at all as it is no mean achievement. It's just very steady and slowly built. Again, there is nowt wrong with that though some Rovers fans were getting impatient. If (yeah I know football is all ifs and buts) he had been appointed manager say when Fenlon was given the job he wouldnt have been given the rope needed. The foundations of the side are solid as the unbeaten record shows. Its a bit Arsenal early 90's more than than the Invincibles. A swashbuckling European campaign will change the perception. I'd be quite happy with dull and top of the table right now!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ontheotherhand View Post
    Replied to this and deleted the post while trying to edit. I'm not interneting well....

    I was only using Long as a way to highlight how rival supporters view other managers more unfavourably than they probably should. Sort of playing off the previous back and forth about the Dundalk managerial situation getting more attention etc.

    'Spoofer' is the term I most often see used by Bohs fans to describe Bradley and Long may he spoof....

    FWIW I think Long and Croly are doing a good job although I do get a bit sick of hearing how they "aren't getting the credit they deserve" every single week on every podcast and broadcast. The new line seems to be that they are the only LOI mgmt team who has to deal with losing their best players...which is always funny to hear from the mouths of the same people who then go on to highlight how weak Rovers look without Jack Byrne and Aaron McEneff.

    I can see why people don't like Bradley. He's the Rovers manager and he does stick the boot sometimes in interviews. The Sligo game this year is a good example. He said afterwards that we had enough chances to win two games and that rankled a few heads. I get that. Probably could have been more gracious. But then he'd praised Sligo all week in the build up and let's be honest, probably doesn't have too much goodwill towards one of the clubs who were messing about last season when we were trying to restart and his team was on course to win it. He also tends to praise his team in the media. Probably to build confidence or get new players to buy into the system we play. The lad is still only 36....he's a baby in managerial terms. If he was managing a lower profile club he'd be lauded but.....such is life. No one likes us, we don't care etc.....
    Bradley there 5 years? Was certainly an immature spoofer when he started out, but has really improved in recent years, certainly got the best of career performances out of Jack Byrne and Aaron Green and tactically he certainly gets it more right than wrong. Can`t argue with a record breaking run either, no matter what the circumstances.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nesta99 View Post
    I may have pinched a nerve along the way, not a big leap from Cork fans' gripes on not getting the accolades for the 2017 double. I actually dont have a particular anti-Rovers sentiment any more than who is the team to beat in any given season. Would I like Dundalk to eclipse Rover's title haul, of course (Cup haul not in my lifetime sadly). I enjoy that whatever little media coverage LoI gets these days its not Shamrock Rovers centric. The late great Jim Murphy stated that Dundalk's single biggest achievement was surviving. As a regional team we have been there abouts with a major trophy every decade since becoming DFC. But my opinions on Rovers are certainly not based on some historical resentment. I think Bradley has achieved what every manager wants, I just dont think that he has been 'spectacular' in his methods but nothing wrong with that if the ends have justified the means. Keith Long would have won a league with Rovers given the resources at hand, maybe even over a shorter space of time. He has kept Bohs on the road irrespective of player drain. For the record I'd love to see Croly as manager at Dundalk as I think he is what the club needs overall. Former Rovers man to Dundalk rather than the other way round!

    It's probably less that you pinched a nerve than that you're a decent poster to have a discussion with to be honest. I wouldn't even bother with some others.

    If it's not spectacular to win a league undefeated with a GD of +37 after 18 games, in the middle of a record breaking undefeated run of 31 then I'll be delighted if the purely solid results continue.

    Not sure Long would have done any better at Rovers. Kenny didn't, Croly didn't, Fenlon didn't. Bradley was the first to realize we needed an entire culture change at the club. A lot of that change happened behind the scenes. Long has done well with somewhat limited resources but he hasn't proven that he can win anything. Bohs have finished 7th, 5th, 8th, 5th, 6th, 3rd and 2nd in his time there. Hard to say if he'd do well at Rovers or Dundalk with more resources. Would he even do well without Croly beside him? I wouldn't trade Bradley for Long.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalymountrower View Post
    Bradley there 5 years? Was certainly an immature spoofer when he started out, but has really improved in recent years, certainly got the best of career performances out of Jack Byrne and Aaron Green and tactically he certainly gets it more right than wrong. Can`t argue with a record breaking run either, no matter what the circumstances.
    Weren't we all?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ontheotherhand View Post
    Weren't we all?
    Think senility will kick in for me before post spoofer maturity!

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    International Prospect Nesta99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ontheotherhand View Post
    It's probably less that you pinched a nerve than that you're a decent poster to have a discussion with to be honest. I wouldn't even bother with some others.

    If it's not spectacular to win a league undefeated with a GD of +37 after 18 games, in the middle of a record breaking undefeated run of 31 then I'll be delighted if the purely solid results continue.

    Not sure Long would have done any better at Rovers. Kenny didn't, Croly didn't, Fenlon didn't. Bradley was the first to realize we needed an entire culture change at the club. A lot of that change happened behind the scenes. Long has done well with somewhat limited resources but he hasn't proven that he can win anything. Bohs have finished 7th, 5th, 8th, 5th, 6th, 3rd and 2nd in his time there. Hard to say if he'd do well at Rovers or Dundalk with more resources. Would he even do well without Croly beside him? I wouldn't trade Bradley for Long.
    For all said about Long, its Croly I would like to see at Dundalk. I think he was let down by some characters when managing Rovers, some players that Id not be sure about having in any dressing room. He may be too nice but a grittier assistant and its a good combo. Reasoning is based on what he was implementing at Rovers with a 2nd side, academy, recognising the need to allocate resources thats not all 1st team, rather than personal (almost greedy) needs first wanting the short term trophies to tick off beside the name. Tactically aware and knowing player potential etc. Right now exactly imo what Dundalk needs and could work very well with JM and SMcD. I think the squad at Dundalk are not disruptive, are driven, and would listen to an astute chap, not needing or wanting the in your face type manager. Maybe the mix is right at Bohs with Long and Croly together and maybe its unfair to pick Croly as the main man behind it all. Similar was said with Mahon the main man behind the scenes too but didnt do a whole lot in the top job then? Obviously this is the worst standard league season ever so doesnt take much to win

    Quote Originally Posted by ontheotherhand View Post
    Weren't we all?
    Oh so true!!!

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    Bradley has developed into a top class manager proven by his record over last two seasons - I think the role of McPhail & Shane Robinson in how Rovers turned around the disastrous period post MON also needs to be factored in as they were hugely instrumental in guiding the club and setting out a sustainable long term model - that will stand to us more than anything over the coming years

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nesta99 View Post
    For all said about Long, its Croly I would like to see at Dundalk. I think he was let down by some characters when managing Rovers, some players that Id not be sure about having in any dressing room. He may be too nice but a grittier assistant and its a good combo. Reasoning is based on what he was implementing at Rovers with a 2nd side, academy, recognising the need to allocate resources thats not all 1st team, rather than personal (almost greedy) needs first wanting the short term trophies to tick off beside the name. Tactically aware and knowing player potential etc. Right now exactly imo what Dundalk needs and could work very well with JM and SMcD. I think the squad at Dundalk are not disruptive, are driven, and would listen to an astute chap, not needing or wanting the in your face type manager. Maybe the mix is right at Bohs with Long and Croly together and maybe its unfair to pick Croly as the main man behind it all. Similar was said with Mahon the main man behind the scenes too but didnt do a whole lot in the top job then? Obviously this is the worst standard league season ever so doesnt take much to win



    Oh so true!!!
    You could be describing Bradley there but the difference was that Bradley had the sense to get rid of the chancers. People seem to forget he came from the academy set up and he is still very involved. You said something earlier about him not being interested or suited to developing young players I think? That doesn't really match the reality at all to be honest. Sure he's been criticized for playing young lads too early as well!

    If you listen to any interview with him, the Academy is a a huge part of what he is trying to do. The B team is the most obvious example of the exact kind of resource allocation you're crediting Croly with but not Bradley for whatever reason. Himself and McPhail did a long interview with Ward and McDonnell on their podcast at the end of the 2020 season that gives you a good glimpse into how they see things.

    Can't see Croly being a first team manager again to be honest. He seems more comfortable as a coach. I see what you're getting at when you say the current Dundalk side might just need a guiding hand rather than a strong personality but does that hold up with all the new foreign signings? You'd be relying heavily on Shields et al to do some of the management work and that might take the focus off of just winning games. Maybe that's already been happening?
    Last edited by ontheotherhand; 06/05/2021 at 5:23 PM.

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    Seasoned Pro sbgawa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nesta99 View Post
    For all said about Long, its Croly I would like to see at Dundalk. I think he was let down by some characters when managing Rovers, some players that Id not be sure about having in any dressing room. He may be too nice but a grittier assistant and its a good combo. Reasoning is based on what he was implementing at Rovers with a 2nd side, academy, recognising the need to allocate resources thats not all 1st team, rather than personal (almost greedy) needs first wanting the short term trophies to tick off beside the name. Tactically aware and knowing player potential etc. Right now exactly imo what Dundalk needs and could work very well with JM and SMcD. I think the squad at Dundalk are not disruptive, are driven, and would listen to an astute chap, not needing or wanting the in your face type manager. Maybe the mix is right at Bohs with Long and Croly together and maybe its unfair to pick Croly as the main man behind it all. Similar was said with Mahon the main man behind the scenes too but didnt do a whole lot in the top job then? Obviously this is the worst standard league season ever so doesnt take much to win



    Oh so true!!!
    This is true, Bradley cleared the decks when he came in and ended up playing a lot of kids but had people pulling in the right direction.
    I've seen Ronan Finn quoted somewhere saying it was seeing who Bradser got rid of as much as the people he was signing that convinced him to rejoin Rovers.
    Crolly may have been a bit too nice, hopefully he will get another chance and i bet he wont make that mistake again

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    International Prospect Nesta99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ontheotherhand View Post
    You could be describing Bradley there but the difference was that Bradley had the sense to get rid of the chancers. People seem to forget he came from the academy set up and he is still very involved. You said something earlier about him not being interested or suited to developing young players I think? That doesn't really match the reality at all to be honest. Sure he's been criticized for playing young lads too early as well!

    If you listen to any interview with him, the Academy is a a huge part of what he is trying to do. The B team is the most obvious example of the exact kind of resource allocation you're crediting Croly with but not Bradley for whatever reason. Himself and McPhail did a long interview with Ward and McDonnell on their podcast at the end of the 2020 season that gives you a good glimpse into how they see things.

    Can't see Croly being a first team manager again to be honest. He seems more comfortable as a coach. I see what you're getting at when you say the current Dundalk side might just need a guiding hand rather than a strong personality but does that hold up with all the new foreign signings? You'd be relying heavily on Shields et al to do some of the management work and that might take the focus off of just winning games. Maybe that's already been happening?
    I meant more that the players would well developed by the time they are near the 1st team, his contact hours with youth players would have to be limited even with all the best of intentions simply due to 1st team workload. Not that he wouldnt be interested, apologies if it sounded like that. He would likely meet coaches to be on the same hymn sheet and to get updates on real prospects and invite them to 1st team sessions but he have to delegate most of the youths training.

    Some of the great managers let the team at each other for the 1st few minutes at HT and then roll in to make tactical changes. But depends on the players of course. I have wondered if part of the problem at Dundalk was players not accepting some of the new idea brought in by FG like formation; That domestic stuff could have been almost left to the players - a few just grasped things by the neck and got over the line but cant do that week in week out.

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