We need someone of Tim Sherwood quality

Fans of course, as we know ourselves, come second to the club. If the club has a strategy they follow it whether that is against fans wishes or not. Sometimes that means taking wrong turnings or backwards steps but always with the long term strategy in mind.

We need someone of Tim Sherwood quality
Grant Hall on loan at Swindon
Our arrangement with Swindon Town was, is a welcome one. From our point of view yes it is all about developing our youth players by giving them first team football. However there must be spin off benefits for the club taking the loanees.

This article from The Two Unfortunates is an informative and enjoyable read from a Swindon Town perspective about young player development but specifically the arrangement with Tottenham and how everything is not rosy for the fans. I highly recommend you have a read.

The fact that the article says Swindon have been approached by two other Premier League clubs to take loan players because of the style of football being played, which is clearly to accommodate our loanees and ape our style, suggests the initial stages of this strategy are a success.

Like ourselves, their fans appear to be growing tired of constant passing with no end product. As with any style, it's fine if you are winning, it's a problem when you are not. There was nothing wrong with the style under Andre Villas-Boas if it could have had the added element of creating chances at the end of it but it lacked that basic and essential element.

We have seen similar under Sherwood at times, usually when we are trying not to lose as opposed to trying to win, Everton springs to mind, most first half performances spring to mind.

I have only watched one Swindon Town game and it was a delight to watch. It was early season at the MK Dons and both sides were playing passing football. perhaps MK Dons should be another club we link with to nurture our youth, after all surely we don't want all our eggs in one basket and they play the type of football we are looking for.

I wrote earlier in the season about youth development abroad, highlighting the development of Eric Dier, an English centre-half and defensive midfielder at Sporting, formerly Sporting Lisbon in Portugal. I looked at how it differed greatly from the development at a young age of players over here.

Abroad development was more important than results and youth players played first team football at a much younger age than in the Premier League. I felt then that perhaps we should be developing more links with clubs in Portugal, Spain or Holland to loan youth players for a seasons development.

The game has gone the way of Premier League teams buying all the talent and loaning it out, not something I am totally in favour of. Personally I don't think a Premier League player should be allowed to be loaned to another Premier League club.

If a club doesn't want a player they should sell him and not hoard talent. How many times has Lukaku actually played for Chelsea yet now they are talking £40 million. That is not right In my view. If a Premier League team wish to loan a player he should have to go abroad. Would that stop player hoarding? I don't know but it wouldn't be worse than the situation we have now although I suppose it would simply be covering up the problem, sweeping it out of sight.

Arsenal it seemed to me were one of the first to start hoarding youngsters, a policy that has served them very well over the years, we are playing catch up. Having put a similar strategy in place because it fits with the financial constraints we have, we needed to evolve to start sending players out on loan.

Tim Sherwood has been instrumental in that, he has transformed youth player development at Spurs and embraced the loan system. There is little doubt that our youth players are developing better now than they ever have and in greater numbers. Love him or hate him that is done to Tim Sherwood and a club strategy.


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It seems inevitable that Sherwood will be leaving Tottenham in the summer to pursue a management career path. There is no indication yet who will take over youth development on a full time basis, LesFerdinand is rumoured to be leaving as well laving just Chris Ramsey on the three.

Louis Van Gaal develops youth, will he be bringing someone to head the academy, will we promote from within or hire from outside, we certainly won't continue to muddle through as we seem to be doing at the moment.

What is Steffen Freund's future, Van Gaal keeps one coach at a club, is he to be that man or would he be ideal to head the next stage of youth development, having coached German youth sides. Will he be Van Gaal's number 2?

Will Chris Ramsey take the youth lead, he seems more of a coach than an administrator and it's a manager, administrator with contacts more than a coach we need.

Whoever takes over we will need them to be at least of Tim Sherwood quality who will continue the good work with the likes of Swindon and expand upon it.

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