I was flicking through the radio dial on my way out the other morning and happened to chance upon talkSPORT. This isn’t something I do very often as the station dumbs down it’s football coverage to chime in with the Sun readership that make up the core of their audience, but I gave them a chance when I heard Steve Curry talking up Roy Hodgson.
Curry’s a good journalist. He knows his football and isn’t afraid to speak his mind. If I was ever going to pick up the Daily Mail, he’d the reason. I might even pop down to the newsagent to read this article all over again. In it, he talks about how coaches are desperate to get down to Motspur Park to observe Roy Hodgson at work.
If you’re aware of Hodgson’s standing within the game, that won’t come as a surprise. As Curry notes, there’s a reason why he’s been a feature on the UEFA technical study groups over the years. I didn’t realise until I read this piece that Hodgson’s defensive strategy was based on the NBA ‘zonal trap defence’ from basketball. Sami Hyypia, who worked with Hodgson when he so nearly guided Finland to Euro 2008, says ever player knows his role and Brede Hangeland confirms that the Fulham training sessions are repetitive and his organisation is meticulous so that players have the necessary discipline and tactical awareness drummed into them.
Sounds simple – but it’s been so effective.