Printer Friendly

Toshack wary of Rooney's skill.

Byline: By Paul Walker

John Toshack knows all about player power ( he has been through it a million times. And he knows all about 4-5-1, or whatever label is put on a supposed new idea.

But the Wales manager has survived it all in nearly 30 years of management and emerged with the doctrine that the collective is always more important than one player.

Whether that player in question was David Beckham he would not reveal, but you sensed the 56-year-old was inwardly smiling about the latest tactical revolution coming out of the England camp, and the uproar surrounding how Sven-GUran Eriksson came up with the plan.

Toshack knows he is taking on a daunting task when he sends out his youthful, new-look Wales side against the English in Cardiff, but he can still see the amusing side of Sven's troubles.

Toshack said: "People have been talking about 4-5-1 as if it has just come in from another planet. It's something I was doing 20 years ago and all the better teams in Europe were doing it. They all play with one out-and-out striker. My Real Madrid team in 1990 played with only one striker, Hugo Sanchez, and still scored 107 goals, which is still a record in Spain. It depends who the five are and who the one is!

"I am more concerned with our own problems rather than any that England have. Wright-Phillips should have been involved long ago, but I suppose that gives them a problem with the position he plays.

"As for player power? Well, the game has changed a lot, and I have been in some big clubs with players from all nationalities. South Americans, Africans, Basques, Russians, Welsh, English, Spanish, the lot.

"They are all different but it is a team game, a collective. And the collective interest must come before any individual interest. The manager must always have that collective interest at heart because he has the most to lose if things don't go well.

"I could talk for days on player power and experiences I have had, but as a manager you should always do what is in the best interest of the collective group."

Toshack's problems are stretching his own limited resources to contain class and talent, and that is why he talks most of Wayne Rooney ( the supposed lone England striker today.

Toshack says: "Sven, I am sure, will pick the best team to win this match because this is a very important game for England. Rooney is an exceptional talent. Against Newcastle last weekend, we saw his sense of anticipation and the speed he reacts.

"The goal he scored was exceptional. He reacts quicker than others and it's something you cannot teach.

"You could see things from him at a very early age that it is difficult to coach into players.

"In the UK everyone plays in straight lines, we haven't been able to produce players who know how to play just behind front men.

"And Rooney can do it. European and South American sides have a lot more of that type, and Rooney is an outstanding talent in that role."
COPYRIGHT 2005 MGN Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

 Reader Opinion

Title:

Comment:



 

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Sep 3, 2005
Words:522
Previous Article:Now let's go out and stump the Welsh.
Next Article:Sanchez men on bookings tightrope.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2014 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters