Graham Potter - the only English head-coach in the Europ league

Discussion in 'General Football' started by Dharmabum, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. Dharmabum

    Dharmabum Well-Known Member

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    Graham Potter has guided Swedish minnows Ostersund to the Europa League group stage... but now sights are set on Champions League football
    • Swedish side Ostersund have qualified for the Europa League group stage
    • The minnows beat Galatasaray on their way to qualifying for the group
    • Graham Potter, and Englishman, is in charge of the ambitious club
    • His chairman now wants his side to make it to the Champions League
    By Matt Mcgeehan, Press Association Sport

    PUBLISHED: 07:47 EDT, 6 September 2017 | UPDATED: 07:47 EDT, 6 September 2017



    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/fo...rsund-s-rise-Europa-League.html#ixzz4tvz98aCt
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook


    From the ninth tier of English football to the Europa League group stage via the fourth division of the Swedish league, Graham Potter's rise is nearly complete.

    But the 42-year-old former York defender, the only English manager in continental competition this season, has been tasked with taking Ostersund into the Champions League by winning Allsvenskan.

    Potter said: 'My chairman (Daniel Kindberg) is an ambitious guy. He wants to win the Allsvenskan and then get into the Champions League. That's the end goal.

    'Six years ago when we were in the fourth tier of Swedish football that sounded like he needed to go to some institution.

    'It's still the aim. That's what we want to try to do and work towards.'

    When Potter and his Ostersund side play Zorya Luhansk in Lviv, Ukraine on September 14, he might well reflect on a playing career which began at Birmingham and included more than 100 appearances for York, plus spells at Northampton, Boston, Shrewsbury and Macclesfield.

    He might also reflect on coaching Leeds Carnegie, a team of students playing in the English ninth tier, as he completed his own masters in leadership and emotional intelligence.

    'That's the beauty of football. You never know where things are going to end up,' Potter added.

    'I didn't feel like the typical pathway was enough for me. I needed to practise, I needed to learn, I needed to get better.'

    Potter undertook an Open University degree in social sciences after finishing his own playing career, which included eight Premier League appearances for Southampton in 1996-97.

    His one victory with Saints came on October 26, 1996 at The Dell, when Sir Alex Ferguson's Manchester United were beaten 6-3 after abandoning their grey shirts at half-time.

    Potter played 20 minutes as a substitute that day and, as the 20th anniversary of that contest nears, he is preparing for a Europa League Group J campaign against Athletic Bilbao of Spain, Ukraine's Zorya Luhansk and Hertha Berlin of Germany.

    Hertha will be the first side to visit the 8,500-capacity Jamtkraft Arena and play on its artificial surface in round two on September 28.

    The return at the Olympiastadion, centrepiece for the 1936 Olympics and with a 75,000 capacity, takes place on December 7 in round six.

    The mighty Galatasaray of Turkey, Luxembourg's Fola Esch and PAOK of Greece have already been dispatched by Potter's side from Sweden's 'Vinterstaden' (Winter City). Lower league journeyman Jamie Hopcutt has made five appearances in qualifying.

    'The manner of our qualification gives us confidence. It's not like we were lucky and hung on,' Potter said.

    'Who knows? We'll keep dreaming. Of course we'll be the underdog in every game.

    'You have to go in with a view that you can win and we'll try our best.'

    The Europa League group stage place gives a financial boost to Potter's quest to fulfil the goals set by Kindberg, whose unorthodoxy has spread to team activities.

    Players participate in cultural activities including ballet, painting lessons and workshops on the indigenous Sami people of the Swedish Arctic.

    It seems to be working for a club which is 20 years old, reached the top flight in 2015 after three promotions under Potter and won the Swedish Cup in 2017.

    'The finances, the resources and the profile you get from the Europa League, this is a chance to accelerate the development,' Potter said.

    He has been at Ostersund since December 2010. He speaks Swedish 'badly' but English is the primary language for a multicultural squad.

    'We've got a really exciting project here,' Potter added.

    'I just want to keep getting better and keep trying to improve. Who knows where football or life takes you? I certainly wouldn't have planned where I am now six years ago.

    'It's a fantastic opportunity and the best thing I've done professionally in my life.'

    Potter, who has three young children, added: 'Now it feels like home.'



    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/fo...Graham-Potter-English-boss-Europa-League.html

    http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/...urope-making-a-name-for-himself-a7970721.html

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football...ter-englishman-using-swan-lake-rock-concerts/
     
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  2. nailsy

    nailsy SC Supporter

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    He sounds like an interesting manager. It'll be interesting to see how his career progresses in the future.
     
  3. SwedishSpurs

    SwedishSpurs I have seen the contract

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    An absolutely amazing manager. I Remember when they played their first games in Allsvenskan, how they completely shocked the Swedish audience with their posession based football. Usually newly promoted sides play quite defensive, especially in their first games, but Östersund seriously looked like Barcelona (I'm not kidding) and they're still one of the most attacking teams in Sweden. It's worth mentioning that their team is based on players that have played in the lower leagues in Sweden (and a few from England) that they have progressed amazingly under Potter. One player (Ken Sema) has just got picked for the Swedish WC squad and another player (Saman Ghoddos) may get a spot, but he's choosing between Sweden and Iran currently.

    I would not be surprised if we see Graham Potter in the Premier League, or at least in the Championship, in a few years. And that would be quite refreshing to see a modern English manager instead of dinosaurs like Hodgson, Allardyce etc.
     
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  4. nailsy

    nailsy SC Supporter

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    Ironically he seems to be following the same path as Hodgson in learning the manergial ropes on Sweden.
     
  5. Dharmabum

    Dharmabum Well-Known Member

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    They, Östersund, just beat Hertha Berlin 1-0 at home in the Euro league.
     
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  6. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

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    Weird, I saw that result tonight, remembered hearing him discussed on the Guardian podcast before the season/Europa started, so googled Ostersund and pulled up this article from the Independent and was just about to post it in here when I saw you'd beat me too it.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/...urope-making-a-name-for-himself-a7970721.html


    Sounds exactly like the sort if guy you'd want in charge of England's national youth set up to me. Possibly the most intelligent English manager out there right now.
     
  7. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

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    I would love to see a guy like him given a chance in the Championship or PL but he'd probably get eaten alive if he didn't win his first 3 games. Just look at what happened to DeBoer. Guys like him you have to have really intelligent and patient chairmen with balls of steel, who back their judgement and don't panic if things don't get off to a great start. That just doesn't happen in English football.


    I think a better shout might be to put him in charge of an academy, an environment that is not so results driven, and someone with his qualifications (emotional intelligence etc) and skill set could really be an major asset in the development of players at a vital stage.
     

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