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Ball gone 22:31 - Feb 23 with 526 viewsgsy163

Issued 10.25
Colchester United can confirm that Steve Ball has left his role as U's Head Coach.

Owner and Chairman Robbie Cowling said: "Following the game tonight and a discussion I had with Steve, it was decided that the best way forward was for him to leave his position as Head Coach."

"Steve has been with the club in different capacities for a long time and I would like it placed on record our thanks to him for his hard work and dedication."

"The club will make no further comment at this time."
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Ball gone on 22:45 - Feb 23 with 490 viewsRSCOSWORTH

I know a lot of people on here, more than I can ever recall, have been asking for the manager to go for quite some time now but I can't help feeling that Ball has been badly let down by this group of players. Maybe he was out of his depth, maybe his tactics weren't right but ultimately the players that walked across that white line repeatedly failed to deliver and they're not the ones that have now lost their job. I don't buy into all this it's the manager's job to motivate them rubbish. They're professional footballers. It's their job to play football to the best of their abilities and not too many players sitting in that dressing room tonight can say they have done that all that often this season.

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Ball gone on 23:14 - Feb 23 with 468 viewsnoah4x4

Ball and Humes set up the team
Ball and Humes dictate the tactics.
Ball and Humes select centre backs as full backs.
Ball and Humes select other players out of position.
Ball and Humes leave an isolated striker up front even for home games.
Ball and Humes select Harriott, Senior and Poku - we can't afford the luxury of all three.
We look uncoordinated in the opponents half.

I respect Ball for his historic contribution and loyalty. But he was out of his depth as Head Coach and Humes as DoF must share responsibility.
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Ball gone on 23:17 - Feb 23 with 466 viewsLeadbelly

Ball gone on 22:45 - Feb 23 by RSCOSWORTH

I know a lot of people on here, more than I can ever recall, have been asking for the manager to go for quite some time now but I can't help feeling that Ball has been badly let down by this group of players. Maybe he was out of his depth, maybe his tactics weren't right but ultimately the players that walked across that white line repeatedly failed to deliver and they're not the ones that have now lost their job. I don't buy into all this it's the manager's job to motivate them rubbish. They're professional footballers. It's their job to play football to the best of their abilities and not too many players sitting in that dressing room tonight can say they have done that all that often this season.


Agreed but sacking all the players isn’t an option. If the new head coach does no better than Ball then the players and those who recruited them need to answer some serious questions. If results do improve then it’s fair enough to place much of the blame for the current situation on Ball, but not all of it.

There is nothing wrong with internal appointments...as long as you have employed the sort of people who are head coach material. The problem is how many people who believe they are of that calibre are ever likely to accept coaching positions to work there way up the pyramid? Some may be prepared to do that at a “big” club but not so many in League 2.
[Post edited 23 Feb 23:18]

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Ball gone on 23:22 - Feb 23 with 460 viewsRSCOSWORTH

Ball gone on 23:14 - Feb 23 by noah4x4

Ball and Humes set up the team
Ball and Humes dictate the tactics.
Ball and Humes select centre backs as full backs.
Ball and Humes select other players out of position.
Ball and Humes leave an isolated striker up front even for home games.
Ball and Humes select Harriott, Senior and Poku - we can't afford the luxury of all three.
We look uncoordinated in the opponents half.

I respect Ball for his historic contribution and loyalty. But he was out of his depth as Head Coach and Humes as DoF must share responsibility.


I don’t know if Humes had any involvement in the first team and I’m pretty sure you don’t either, it’s just something a lot of people seem to believe, but granted Ball has made some decisions that haven’t worked out for him and the club. None of the above stops you from running and working hard though and plenty of players have been far from their best this season.

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Ball gone on 00:06 - Feb 24 with 437 viewsdurham_exile

SB had to go.

Humes as DOF has been behind the appointment of players.

He must go too.

Sad day for the club, but with other results going the way tonight action had to be taken.

We simply cannot afford to be relegated

Caretaker Hayden Mullins now needs to prepare the players for FGR away at the weekend.

Can someone drive Parky to the Club soonest.

We have advanced backwards for the past 5 years and serious restorative action is required.

I for one am sick and tired of the dross served up for the faithful and for the poor results. We can do much much better and it has been an embarrassment since we lost to Marine. The worst sesaon for years.

And I'm sick of the sight of Exeter and can't wait for us to finally beat them again.

Up the U's
[Post edited 24 Feb 0:28]

Durham_exile

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Ball gone on 08:56 - Feb 24 with 365 viewsAddy

To be honest I don't thnk things will get much better until Robbie C follows Steve Ball out of the door, yes he has put a lot of money into the club but he and his mates have achieved very little in the last 10 years. The problem is unless he cuts his losses and our debts to sell the club, we don't stand a cat in hells chance of anyone taking any interest in it. So the obsession with the academy, the incredible number of backroom staff, and the poor playing style will continue.
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Ball gone on 09:04 - Feb 24 with 359 viewswessex_exile

Ball gone on 00:06 - Feb 24 by durham_exile

SB had to go.

Humes as DOF has been behind the appointment of players.

He must go too.

Sad day for the club, but with other results going the way tonight action had to be taken.

We simply cannot afford to be relegated

Caretaker Hayden Mullins now needs to prepare the players for FGR away at the weekend.

Can someone drive Parky to the Club soonest.

We have advanced backwards for the past 5 years and serious restorative action is required.

I for one am sick and tired of the dross served up for the faithful and for the poor results. We can do much much better and it has been an embarrassment since we lost to Marine. The worst sesaon for years.

And I'm sick of the sight of Exeter and can't wait for us to finally beat them again.

Up the U's
[Post edited 24 Feb 0:28]


I actually think a lot of the players who’ve been brought in, certainly since Tony Humes has been Director of Football, have been pretty good quality to be honest. I don’t see that as the problem, just what’s been done with them when they’re here. I know there are some who want to blame Humes for everything, but let’s keep a sense of perspective.

Up the U's
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Ball gone on 09:15 - Feb 24 with 348 viewswessex_exile

Ball gone on 08:56 - Feb 24 by Addy

To be honest I don't thnk things will get much better until Robbie C follows Steve Ball out of the door, yes he has put a lot of money into the club but he and his mates have achieved very little in the last 10 years. The problem is unless he cuts his losses and our debts to sell the club, we don't stand a cat in hells chance of anyone taking any interest in it. So the obsession with the academy, the incredible number of backroom staff, and the poor playing style will continue.


The ‘obsession’ with the academy is part of Robbie’s ambition to make Colchester United as self-sufficient as possible, so that when the time comes and he does move on, we’re not left up the creek praying for someone to come along prepared to pump literally millions of their own money into the club - for remarkably little gratitude it would seem. The playing style has tried to be a passing game, how football should be played for the most part, but it needs the right manager/ tactics to make it work (and a decent pitch). Ironically, on the number of back room staff, Tony Ashby was let go last month and some read it as a conspiracy.

Up the U's
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Ball gone on 09:47 - Feb 24 with 335 viewsRSCOSWORTH

Ball gone on 09:15 - Feb 24 by wessex_exile

The ‘obsession’ with the academy is part of Robbie’s ambition to make Colchester United as self-sufficient as possible, so that when the time comes and he does move on, we’re not left up the creek praying for someone to come along prepared to pump literally millions of their own money into the club - for remarkably little gratitude it would seem. The playing style has tried to be a passing game, how football should be played for the most part, but it needs the right manager/ tactics to make it work (and a decent pitch). Ironically, on the number of back room staff, Tony Ashby was let go last month and some read it as a conspiracy.


I completely back the academy model and I think it's something that both Cowling and the fans should be very proud of. It's produced a number of players over the years that have gone on to be a success at the club and then sold to provide the club with vital funds. The idea of playing the same brand of football from the youngest of youth teams all the way up to the first team may be something that would work at a Liverpool or Tottenham but I just don't think it works in League Two. League Two is about results football and League One is pretty much the same. Lincoln got promoted from this division playing some not very pretty stuff and the more direct teams seem to be prospering now. Yes you have to have the right playing staff to play in any of these styles but there are very few teams that pass their way out of this division although I thought Swindon last year were very good. I remember seeing some stats before the League One Play Off Final last season about Oxford and Wycombe. Oxford were top of all the "pretty" stats and Wycombe were pretty much bottom. And we all know who ended up in the Championship. A few years ago when Southend were playing in a League Two Play Off Semi Final a guy I know who coaches for Chelsea in the US slated the way Southend were playing on Facebook. He's a former Col U player and must've forgotten that he was friends with John White who didn't really appreciate his statement. John White went on to say that in League Two you defend, get the ball forward quickly and play your football in the opposition's third. I think it's pretty obvious we've been doing the opposite for years. When we come up against a team that plays in a similar way it can result in an entertaining game and we look good but when we come up against a physical side, like say Northampton last season, we just don't seem able to compete. Also a point that has been made by others is that the playing surfaces in League Two aren't always the best and that again makes it more difficult for us to play our "brand" of football. I don't think players need to only know how to play one way. We've had players that have done well here who have gone on to be a success elsewhere and I'd be surprised if where they've gone plays in exactly the same way. If the player is good enough they should be able to adapt to multiple ways of playing. People seem to remember the Parky era as if we played like Barcelona. We really didn't. We often used to grind out results and a lot of our wins were by a single goal. The team had a togetherness and worked hard for each other. We had enough decent footballers to be able to play a bit but we could also match teams physically as well and tough out a result when we had to. In the lower divisions there's a lot to be said for hard work and team spirit. Hopefully the new manager can instil a lot more of both.

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Ball gone on 10:45 - Feb 24 with 319 viewsDaniel

Spot on RS. The problem is the philosophy of the club - playing the same formation and tactics at all levels and promoting from within. I despise Tony Humes, he was one of the worst managers the club ever had, he turned on the fans, and he is the reason we were relegated to League 2 (I also know people who have worked with him which sways my opinion). He is a great talent spotter, I'll give him credit for that and I'd welcome him holding a position as head of recruitment at the club, but we need to ditch the Director of Football & Head Coach arrangement.

I appreciate that Robbie Cowling had his fingers burned by the likes of Paul Lambert and Aidy Hoofroyd, which is why he has taken the approach he has, but now is the time to offer a job to an experienced manager and give them full control of what happens on the pitch. By all means tell them there isn't money to spend on players and they have to use the academy, that'll still work.
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Ball gone on 11:31 - Feb 24 with 291 viewsdurham_exile

Ball gone on 09:47 - Feb 24 by RSCOSWORTH

I completely back the academy model and I think it's something that both Cowling and the fans should be very proud of. It's produced a number of players over the years that have gone on to be a success at the club and then sold to provide the club with vital funds. The idea of playing the same brand of football from the youngest of youth teams all the way up to the first team may be something that would work at a Liverpool or Tottenham but I just don't think it works in League Two. League Two is about results football and League One is pretty much the same. Lincoln got promoted from this division playing some not very pretty stuff and the more direct teams seem to be prospering now. Yes you have to have the right playing staff to play in any of these styles but there are very few teams that pass their way out of this division although I thought Swindon last year were very good. I remember seeing some stats before the League One Play Off Final last season about Oxford and Wycombe. Oxford were top of all the "pretty" stats and Wycombe were pretty much bottom. And we all know who ended up in the Championship. A few years ago when Southend were playing in a League Two Play Off Semi Final a guy I know who coaches for Chelsea in the US slated the way Southend were playing on Facebook. He's a former Col U player and must've forgotten that he was friends with John White who didn't really appreciate his statement. John White went on to say that in League Two you defend, get the ball forward quickly and play your football in the opposition's third. I think it's pretty obvious we've been doing the opposite for years. When we come up against a team that plays in a similar way it can result in an entertaining game and we look good but when we come up against a physical side, like say Northampton last season, we just don't seem able to compete. Also a point that has been made by others is that the playing surfaces in League Two aren't always the best and that again makes it more difficult for us to play our "brand" of football. I don't think players need to only know how to play one way. We've had players that have done well here who have gone on to be a success elsewhere and I'd be surprised if where they've gone plays in exactly the same way. If the player is good enough they should be able to adapt to multiple ways of playing. People seem to remember the Parky era as if we played like Barcelona. We really didn't. We often used to grind out results and a lot of our wins were by a single goal. The team had a togetherness and worked hard for each other. We had enough decent footballers to be able to play a bit but we could also match teams physically as well and tough out a result when we had to. In the lower divisions there's a lot to be said for hard work and team spirit. Hopefully the new manager can instil a lot more of both.


Some years ago we played Wolves and lost over the two legs in the Play Offs. It was over after we lost 2-0 in the home leg.

I remember at the Molineux seconbd leg speaking to some Wolves fans who said we would never get out of the league playing attractive football and had to adopt a more ruthlesss and uncompromising style of play.

No one wants to see our club in the state that it is with year on year regression but that is what we currently have.

Regarding an experienced manager yes they are out there but I am unclear as to whether they would come to the club at the present time.

Wayne Brown will offer a positive approach and if he can work some magic, we have enough games to escape this situation.

RC should be applauded for acting before it was too late.

There are big problems at the moment and I believe that we have the players to get us out of it, they just need the right motivation, formation and tactics.

We now need to get behind Wayne Brown and give him the opportunity to get us up the table.

Up the U's

Durham_exile

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Ball gone on 11:49 - Feb 24 with 282 viewsDaniel

"There are big problems at the moment and I believe that we have the players to get us out of it, they just need the right motivation, formation and tactics."

But how much of a say will Browny get in the formation and tactics! Ball had plenty of motivation and look when that got him.
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Ball gone on 12:19 - Feb 24 with 269 viewsbwildered

Can a ex manager of the first team, if offered a job still coach within the club set up ?
Would it make sense to redeploy Ball back into a coaching role, this gives a great insight to youngsters to what is required has a player and manager in forwarding their careers .
Having worked his way to first team manager through the clubs coaching tasks, being replaced from that post would invariably mean leaving the club has the only solution or would pride stop you being redeploy back within .

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Ball gone on 12:24 - Feb 24 with 265 viewsdurham_exile

Ball gone on 11:49 - Feb 24 by Daniel

"There are big problems at the moment and I believe that we have the players to get us out of it, they just need the right motivation, formation and tactics."

But how much of a say will Browny get in the formation and tactics! Ball had plenty of motivation and look when that got him.


Daniel, that is one of the frustrations of being an exiled supporter, it is difficult to get the true or complete picture emanating from the club.

Modern communications allow almost instantaneous updates and announcements but I have noticed that we do not get a clear picture of events and this has been more prevalent over the past two years.

I still haven't seen details of Tony Ashby's departure and correct me if I'm wrong but there has been no vote of thanks for his commitment to the club from the club.

Similarly you are right confusion reigns about SB and HM and what is going on.

Is this all down to RC or does it reflect on the Media department within the club who are not covering themselves in glory with the way that these matter of import are being handled and announced.

It is all very frustrating and annoying.

In all my years of supporting the club, I have never been so disappointed as I am now given our precarious position and our regression over the past 5 years.

We are advancing backwards and the players perhaps have been lulled into this situation over the entire season. There has been no progress but we have not suddently become a bad team, yes confidence is low and not playing a settled team has affected the squad.

COVID has affected all teams but many clubs are playing consistent football and there are games where we have simply been outplayed but we are not clinical in the final third where we have been shown that the lone striker approach is simply not good enough.

Hopefully the new manager syndrome will enable us to secure a rare double this weekend.

Enough for the moment. Up the U's
[Post edited 24 Feb 12:27]

Durham_exile

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