Last month Valencia secured their first league win under the tutelage of Garry Neville, who will be hoping that win sparks a turnaround in fortunes.
Neville is an excellent communicator. During his tenure as a Sky Sports TV pundit, he was very good at analysing football games. He sees the mistakes of coaches and footballers long before they occur. He had foresight, vision and a sharp analytical mind as a pundit. But now Neville has taken up a job as the coach of Valencia – a Spanish football club, and he is finding it extremely hard to win games since his arrival. You know why? Talk is cheap!
Taking up the Valencia job means Neville has opened himself a can of worms. He is no longer required to talk, but to take action. To do what he has been talking about on TV. But, they say action speaks louder than words.
Are you a complainer or a problem solver?
You would have thought that being a good analyst helps you become a good coach. Should it not? But it’s one thing to be able to see what teams are doing wrong. It’s another to work with a team to make the necessary improvements to make them better. That’s what good coaches or leaders do. Anyone can easily identify other people’s mistakes, but it takes a good creative person to come up with a solution. A good leader ought to be able to design plans and training sessions to develop those areas that are failing and make things get better.
It was an incredibly tough start for Neville and maybe he should have remained a pundit, like many football fans.
Almost every fan think they know better than coaches and footballers. It is easy to demonstrate, animate and gesticulate how Ronaldo or Messi should dribble and pass the ball whist sitting comfortably in your sofa and watching them on TV.
People within the game might feel that Neville has been able to talk very well, but now he’s seen what life is like, as a coach, that maybe he should show greater respect for what others coaches have achieved.
No one will dispute the achievements of Neville as a pundit. The reality is that Neville had criticised so many managers and players during his time as a commentator. One of the most famous is his criticism of Brazilian Centre-back David Luiz, during his tenure at Chelsea, who Neville likened to a player who played like one controlled by a ten-year-old boy operating a Play Station. This was just one of many of his criticisms with the likes of Jose Mourinho, Louis Van Gaal and Brendan Rodgers bearing the brunt of his public criticism. He queried their tactics, management and strategy.
Back in August 2015, Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger hits back at Sky pundits Neville and Carragher for criticising his performance. Former Manchester United defender Neville claimed during a TV broadcast that Wenger is either “naive or arrogant” to think he can win the title with flair players. But Wenger, who has worked for many years as a commentator for French TV station TF1, simply says “It is not just about talking.”
Did you know that Proverbs 18:2 says “A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion?” Maybe it is time you begin to understand people more, rather than simply criticising those you don’t understand.
It is difficult to decipher the pundit Neville and Neville the Manager as he has failed to instil those methods and qualities he constantly criticised other managers for failing to do.
One would have expected Gary Neville to hit the ground running upon his appointment as the new manager of Valencia on 2 December 2015. But, unfortunately, Neville has lost so many games in his first quarter at the club.
We must admit he is working in the most difficult environment in Spain. Yet he continues to communicate well. He has spoken to the media 30 times in his first 60 days in charge. But words start to count for little when results are so poor.
Speculation surrounding Neville’s position at Valencia intensified following a run of 12 La Liga matches without a win. However, speaking after Valencia recorded three victories last month, including a 6-0 thrashing of Rapid Vienna in the Europa League, Valencia president Layhoon Chan says Neville’s position was not in jeopardy.
Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.
Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.