Laurie, don’t be a Bozo: do your own thing
If Laurie Daley wants to make his mark as the new coach of the NSW Blues, he needs to be his own person, just like when he was a champion footballer for the Canberra Raiders (1987 to 2000).
The kid from Junee played 244 games for the ‘Lime Greens’ and I cannot recall him ever having a poor game.
He was nearly always in the top three players on the ground by giving 100% and doing his own thing.
But that was then and this is now.
Daley needs to stop being the world’s nicest guy and make hard decisions. He clearly feels obligated to hire and involve everyone he can who just missed the boat this year because it is the nice thing to do, not because it is the best thing to do.
The NSW Blues camps have been chocker block full of ‘jobs for the boys’. If you have any miniscule link to either Phil Gould or Ricky Stuart then you have very good credentials to get a Camp Blue pass, and if you played in the same team then a coaching role of some type could be on offer.
One of the major reasons the Blues have been unable to win a series against the Maroons is poor selection policy and how players are used off the bench.
Daley has already said that he wants to work with the two people responsible for those blunders.
Not a good start Loz, so much for being your own man.
The one constant over the last seven years has been Bob Fulton as a selector, yet under the jobs for the boys rule that is still in force at NSWRL. All is forgotten and ‘Bozo’ has been granted another appointment.
Ricky Stuart would have likely won the Origin series in both 2011 and ’12 had he not made a monumental stuff up with key on field selections and use of the all-important bench. Daley has indicated that he wants his old Raiders club mate, Stuart to “help him” with selection in 2013.
Why Laurie, why?
You have been given the job, now go and do it like you played footy. Find the weaknesses in the opposition and exploit them.
To be honest, I have no idea if Daley can coach or even be a good man manager. He certainly was one of the most competitive footballers I have ever seen but, from what we have witnessed when he has held a clip board for the NSW Country Origin and the Indigenous coaching jobs, the attack and defence structures he put in place did not scream out “Wayne Bennett”.
When he calls the footy for Fox Sports he reminds me of a school teacher talking to 12 year old students, but that does not mean he will not be the next Blues coach to win a series. After all, ‘Fatty’ Vautin won one.
It is clear that Laurie Daley has a good footy brain, but if he is going to down to the might of Mal Meninga’s Maroons then he should do it like he played, his own way.
He does not need the current coach of Parramatta “helping” him with selections, and as a selector of modern day NRL players, let’s just say Bob Fulton was a great player.
The selection and coaching policy has failed over the last seven years, so why would anyone choose to put good money after bad? Close enough is not good enough and where I went to school they don’t pay out on the runner up.
Most students of the game would argue that the players have been good enough to claim the last two series for NSW, but have been have been inhibited at crucial times by poor off field decisions.
There is a Laurie Daley statue at Canberra Stadium for a very good reason; because the Raiders chose him in front of Ricky Stuart and Mal Meninga.
Maybe they know the result in 2013 already.
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