Premiership Postures

This report was created by Martin Perry, exclusively for the London Times. The aim of this special Sports Psychology report is to give insight into the body language and psychology of the Premiership managers It is obvious that the job of a Premiership manager is stressful; we dont need the evidence of Houlliers heart attack to convince us of that. Every time they lead their teams to the white line they are under the spotlight of the television cameras; they have to learn how to deal with that glare; it heightens emotions and bleaches out uncertainty in the viewers eyes. […]

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Sven Goran Eriksson – Mission Impossible?

He arrived to a standing ovation at Upton Park. As if the East Enders, loyal to the national cause, sensed in the calm Swede the something else, the something different, the calming, indefinable ingredient x-the healing England needed after the emotional excesses of the Keegan era. And, initially, he delivered. Lifting the shadow of fear, encouraging his young charges to, in sports psychology parlance, dare to lose to win, the Germans were routed in memorable fashion in Munich. Prompting the belief that the World Cup could be taken from the French. It wasn’t just the freedom with which the players […]

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Alan Pardew – The Psychology Of Management

When we hear performers talk about the flow state, they mean the point where they are able to go beyond perceived limits and achieve extraordinary outcomes. Think Beckham from the halfway line, Diego Maradona dribbling through England’s defence, Owen putting Argentina to the sword. We know that this flow state occurs when the performer and the game are as one. They perform without the internal background noise, which breeds self-doubt or anxiety. Being fully present in the moment, it’s peak performance made manifest. We are witnessing sporting synchronicity. If internal and external harmony coalesce we are approaching sporting excellence. It […]

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Who Dares Wins?

In the high-wire relegation game between West Brom and West Ham, three solid gold chances fall to the man who, for all his wealth, can’t buy a goal. Three years ago Lee Hughes was the toast of the Hawthorns. Famed for his predatory instincts and endearing celebrations, Hughes had it. He frolicked in the adulation. He was the signature player. The player who defined the club; A big move to Coventry fails. Back in the Black Country, the goals have dried up. Far from frolicking, he trudges. From scoring goals for fun to scoring goals for credibility and salvation. Does […]

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The Roeder to Perdition

Sixty-five minutes into the fourth round FA Cup Tie at Old Trafford, West Ham manager Glenn Roeder went for a short walk. From his pitchside technical area, which he had worn thin with worry, he made for the elevated visitors’ dug out. He climbed the six steps to the top. Ahead, to the left, sat his coaching staff. They kept their eyes fixed firmly ahead. Avoiding the boss. Avoiding answers to unanswerable questions. Roeder, as if sensing the wall of discomfort emanating from his staff, stopped. He put his hand over his mouth, looked back out onto the pitch and […]

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Inside The Mind Of Kevin Keegan

Imagine that Kevin Keegan and a team of mountaineers set off to conquer the South West face of Everest. The expedition would leave base camp with boundless camaraderie, conviction and confidence. The party would advance up the mountain with spirit and optimism, until suddenly, with the summit in sight, conditions would get more difficult. Its at this point, on the verge of success, that Kevin, for no apparent reason, turns round and heads for base camp. When asked why he didnt keep going to the top, Kevin would struggle to offer a clear explanation, but an astute commentator might observe, […]

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I’m A Superstar – Get Me Out Of Here!

The BBC opened the papers after the FA Cup third round to discover they were in the dock. Accused of excess caution. In their selection of live cup action the public were denied the schadenfreude of witnessing the cup’s romance as Everton were beaten at Gay Meadow. Viewers were forced to watch Tottenham’s meek submission in Hampshire.Yet it was easy to understand the BBC’s thinking. Everton’s transformation under the astute Moyes suggested they would be fully prepared for the Shrewsbury challenge. Professional enough to absorb the home side’s pressure and probably make class tell. Like the BBC, the Toffeemen failed […]

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Inside The Mind Of Roy Keane

In The Tempest, Caliban complains to his master, Prospero, You taught me language: and my profit ont is I know how to curse The Drama Four games into his latest comeback and the football world waits to see whether Roy Keane has become a convert to Sun Tzes Art of War offensive strategy that To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Or is the King of Cork still living by his own unwritten rules of sporting warfare? Rules which have been his battle code of honour for fifteen years. Rule 1 The greater the pain of rejection […]

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