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Is Gregor Townsend getting shown the door as well

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Is Gregor Townsend getting shown the door as well Empty Is Gregor Townsend getting shown the door as well

Post by gmclachl Mon 13 Feb 2012, 9:33 pm

The Herald seems to think so.

http://www.heraldscotland.com/sport/rugby/gregor-townsend-expected-to-depart-with-graham-steadman-as-andy-robinson-instigates-scotland-backroom-shake-up.16741

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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Mon 13 Feb 2012, 9:38 pm

Seems very possible, altho I thought that Robinson was v keen to "mentor" him as a coach. Steadman looked utterly grim in the box next to Robinsob, as tho he would rather have been anywhere else - not entirely surprising. I think we need to be carful here - the worst situation would be appointing new assistant coaches and then Robinson walking away or being pushed so that his successor gets lumbered with a team that is not of his own making. No decisions until after the end of the 6Ns and Robinson has made his intentions clear

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Post by justified sinner Mon 13 Feb 2012, 10:16 pm

Actually think there's a dual thing here. Defence and attack have to work together. If you watch Scotland and especially Cus they often slow ball down from rucks to make sure their defensive line is formed. Probably a Steadman thing, and very Glasgow, not, sure if that's Steadman having been in post longer and therefore top dog, or not, but worth bearing in mind in the overall dynamics of the coaching set up.

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Post by 21st Century Schizoid Man Mon 13 Feb 2012, 11:03 pm

Well if he goes let's hope Robinson goes too ! mad
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Post by gowales Tue 14 Feb 2012, 6:04 am

Good. How the hell did this guy get an international coaching in the first place, his name probably helped.

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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Tue 14 Feb 2012, 8:49 am

From the Hootsman today:

GREGOR Townsend is expected to remain part of the Scotland coaching set-up, at least for the foreseeable future, despite reports claiming yesterday that he is to be released from his duties.

The assistant coach, who has responsibility for attack, has been held responsible in some quarters for Scotland’s recent failure to score tries. Greig Laidlaw’s touchdown in the 27-13 defeat against Wales on Saturday was the national team’s first try in five games.

Robinson confirmed on Sunday that his defence coach Graham Steadman will leave the coaching team when his contract expires in May, and some commentators drew from his after-match ‘no comment’ on the future of Townsend that the attack coach was also in line to be released. That was, however, wide of the mark.

Townsend told The Scotsman: “I have been in discussions about extending my contract beyond this season and am very hopeful that this will happen. Ultimately, that is not up to me and you never know what lies around the corner. If we do not manage to improve the ratio of victories, then I accept that international rugby is a harsh place and you might not get the time you want to make the improvements you want to make.

“But there have been no indications to me that I am no longer wanted, and I have had very positive discussions with Andy about what we want to do in the short, medium and long-term to take this squad forward. We remain confident that we can do it and these players are capable of pushing Scotland forward.”

How in the hell is Steadman being moved on when our defence has been a real strong point in the last 2-3 years and Townsend is keeping his job? Astounding Doh

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Post by gowales Tue 14 Feb 2012, 9:00 am

Gregor's probably got some friends in high positions censored

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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Tue 14 Feb 2012, 9:05 am

Ferguson often has the official SRU line, so here it is:

Too soon to sharpen the knives for Townsend over Scots’ cutting edge

by David Ferguson

Published on Tuesday 14 February 2012 02:47

ATTACK is a key part of any sport and the debate now developing in Scottish rugby after another disappointing start to the RBS Six Nations Championship appears to be which characters to attack.

After Scotland coach Andy Robinson confirmed his defence coach Graham Steadman is not being retained when his contract expires in May, there were questions from elements of the media about Gregor Townsend’s future. Some of the former stand-off’s critics appear to believe he is responsible for most if not all of the national team’s ills, while, for others, there has been a more understandable concern since he was appointed by Robinson in 2009 to the position of attack coach that it was a premature move.

Townsend finished playing in 2007, but what Robinson saw, which Frank Hadden also turned to in 2008, was an appreciation in Townsend of the way the modern game was developing that was not apparent in others in Scotland. The intelligent Borderer has always had a cerebral tactical/technical approach to the game, one which any of his team-mates would attest to, and some admit to being bored by over-lengthy ‘Toony theses’.

But his thinking was developed when working with Scotland squads of the 1990s, when winning games and scoring tries was far more common, under coaches such as Jim Telfer, Ian McGeechan, Richie Dixon and David Johnston among others.

That alone does not make a successful coach. There are others with different skills and more experience who could have been promoted. The 38-year-old was perhaps in the right place at the right time, and he certainly was enthusiastic about the challenge of turning around a Scotland attack that, from 1999 onwards, when he was only the second Scot to score a try in every championship match, has lost the art of try-scoring.

When we study the argument now being promulgated elsewhere for sacking Townsend – the first time I can remember of the media calling for an assistant’s head and ignoring the head coach – it is worth comparing Scotland’s attacking record. Gauging the success or otherwise of an attack is not a black-and-white issue. For example, penalties are often the result of good attacks stopped illegally by opposition sides, but for purposes of comparison, generally, tries are the best measure of an attack’s fruit and certainly is the one being held up now as the great fault of the attack coach.

Across the history of the Six Nations, going back to 2000, all try-scoring has in general tailed off, from England scoring 20, 29 and 23 in the first three tournaments to only managing 43 in the past four, for instance. Similarly, the top scorers France accumulated 80 tries in the first five tournaments and 63 in the last five.

With Italy having scored 12 in 2003, Scotland remain the only nation not to yet achieve double figures for tries in one championship, their closest being nine in 2000. In four seasons under Ian McGeechan, they scored 30, in two with Matt Williams it was 12, Hadden’s teams yielded 19 in four tournaments and, so far, Robinson’s sides have scored 14 with three games to go in their third tournament. So, they are ahead of Hadden’s scoring rate and close to Williams’.

Were we to be at the point Hadden found himself in 2008-9, with a game closing up around Dan Parks’ kicking at stand-off, relative to the way Hadden opened up Scotland’s attack in his first season – yet still was rewarded with just a try a game – then we would perhaps be in the same pit of despair about what lay ahead.

But that is not the case and, just as Hadden could do little about the skills of the players he had to work with, as was the case with Williams and McGeechan, so it is less about the ability of the coaches now and more to do with the emerging talent.

The coaches have a crucial role, of course, and one only has to look at the style of game Scotland are playing now and the consistent line-breaking occurring, and contrast that with the years before Robinson took over when the most depressing statistic after games was the ‘nil’ in the line-breaks column. Townsend’s critics appear to be ignoring that.

Am I the only one seeing players hitting gaps now? Clearly, it is not as often as we would like still, and there remain some slow, predictable patterns at times as players take the wrong option, run short on confidence under pressure or drop the ball.

One other reason for critics to believe that Townsend is following Steadman out of the door lies in the appointment of Scott Johnson, the Australian, to help the coaching team. However, one key reason for his appointment was to cover Robinson’s potential year out with the British and Irish Lions. That may now seem unlikely, but Johnson is also expected to bring a different thinking to the coaching staff and some mentoring too.

Robinson’s decision to promote Townsend as quickly as he did may have been questionable, but now that he has invested such time in a coach that is widely respected in Scotland and abroad, it would be a surprise were he to change tack and drop him now.

If Scotland lose their remaining three games, it would be right to look again at the coaching make-up, and Robinson himself may not survive. But for the moment, those looking for another head to roll will have to wait.

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Post by RDW Tue 14 Feb 2012, 9:19 am

I reckon they'll keep him. I don't think the Steadman decision is based on them being disappointed with his performance, just think that one of hte parties thinks it is time to move on.

Robinson has openly said that he sees Townsend as his protege and his work in process, so can't see him getting rid of Townsend!

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Post by George Carlin Tue 14 Feb 2012, 9:24 am

Both Steadman and Toonie were hangovers from the Haddock Era, no?

Amazing that they've made it this long, in that case. I really rate Steadman. In terms of Toonie, I am a firm believer in the school of thought that what he had cannot be taught. As has been pretty fecking obvious for 4 seasons now.
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Post by Tattie Scones RRN Tue 14 Feb 2012, 9:35 am

AsLongAsBut100ofUs wrote:From the Hootsman today:

GREGOR Townsend is expected to remain part of the Scotland coaching set-up, at least for the foreseeable future, despite reports claiming yesterday that he is to be released from his duties.

The assistant coach, who has responsibility for attack, has been held responsible in some quarters for Scotland’s recent failure to score tries. Greig Laidlaw’s touchdown in the 27-13 defeat against Wales on Saturday was the national team’s first try in five games.

Robinson confirmed on Sunday that his defence coach Graham Steadman will leave the coaching team when his contract expires in May, and some commentators drew from his after-match ‘no comment’ on the future of Townsend that the attack coach was also in line to be released. That was, however, wide of the mark.

Townsend told The Scotsman: “I have been in discussions about extending my contract beyond this season and am very hopeful that this will happen. Ultimately, that is not up to me and you never know what lies around the corner. If we do not manage to improve the ratio of victories, then I accept that international rugby is a harsh place and you might not get the time you want to make the improvements you want to make.

“But there have been no indications to me that I am no longer wanted, and I have had very positive discussions with Andy about what we want to do in the short, medium and long-term to take this squad forward. We remain confident that we can do it and these players are capable of pushing Scotland forward.”

How in the hell is Steadman being moved on when our defence has been a real strong point in the last 2-3 years and Townsend is keeping his job? Astounding Doh


Really?

How much time do you need?

Steadman is probably the only part of the coaching set up with any success - Scotland's defence has been pretty solid since he came on board.

AR and GT need to go asap and definitely before any of the younger more talented players come on board or their natural game, confidence and ability will be slowly destroyed.

Also, did anyone else see Laidlaw's try again?

Was he actually pointing out the try line to the ref? It looked on two occasions he was telling the ref to watch the line before he touched down.

Very clever if that was the case.

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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Tue 14 Feb 2012, 9:38 am

Tattie Scones RRN wrote:
AsLongAsBut100ofUs wrote:From the Hootsman today:

GREGOR Townsend is expected to remain part of the Scotland coaching set-up, at least for the foreseeable future, despite reports claiming yesterday that he is to be released from his duties.

The assistant coach, who has responsibility for attack, has been held responsible in some quarters for Scotland’s recent failure to score tries. Greig Laidlaw’s touchdown in the 27-13 defeat against Wales on Saturday was the national team’s first try in five games.

Robinson confirmed on Sunday that his defence coach Graham Steadman will leave the coaching team when his contract expires in May, and some commentators drew from his after-match ‘no comment’ on the future of Townsend that the attack coach was also in line to be released. That was, however, wide of the mark.

Townsend told The Scotsman: “I have been in discussions about extending my contract beyond this season and am very hopeful that this will happen. Ultimately, that is not up to me and you never know what lies around the corner. If we do not manage to improve the ratio of victories, then I accept that international rugby is a harsh place and you might not get the time you want to make the improvements you want to make.

“But there have been no indications to me that I am no longer wanted, and I have had very positive discussions with Andy about what we want to do in the short, medium and long-term to take this squad forward. We remain confident that we can do it and these players are capable of pushing Scotland forward.”

How in the hell is Steadman being moved on when our defence has been a real strong point in the last 2-3 years and Townsend is keeping his job? Astounding Doh


Really?

How much time do you need?

Steadman is probably the only part of the coaching set up with any success - Scotland's defence has been pretty solid since he came on board.

AR and GT need to go asap and definitely before any of the younger more talented players come on board or their natural game, confidence and ability will be slowly destroyed.

Also, did anyone else see Laidlaw's try again?

Was he actually pointing out the try line to the ref? It looked on two occasions he was telling the ref to watch the line before he touched down.

Very clever if that was the case.
Tattie, I figured that he was trying to point out that Faletau was possibly in an offside position to the ref as well as doing just enough to district young Toby from the task at hand. You'll notice that just as Faletau pulls his hand back behind the line, his body rises a couple of inches and in pounces wee Greig - v clever indeed clap

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Post by Tattie Scones RRN Tue 14 Feb 2012, 10:27 am

Ah that's what he was doing. Fair play to him. Think we might have a wee cracker there once he has a few games under his belt. thumbsup


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Post by funnyExiledScot Tue 14 Feb 2012, 11:03 am

Looks like Townsend is going to stay. I agree with ASBO, let's just wait until the end of the tournament as see where we are. The absolute last thing we need to do is to start appointing coaches and then end up sacking Robinson and having a bunch of his appointees of long term contracts.

That's the sort of thing we should leave to the English.....

Townsend is my favourite Scotland player of all time, but I think he was promoted too soon to the Scotland role. Like players, coaches need to do their time and prove themselves in the club game. I also question whether such a mercurial player who rarely followed his coaches instructions can convert into a top class coach. Townsend was an instinctive player whose real skill was to produce the unexpected - not sure how easily that can be coached.

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Post by eirebilly Tue 14 Feb 2012, 11:34 am

Personally i was amazed that Townsend made it to the 6N. I thought that he would have been gone after the RWC.
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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Tue 14 Feb 2012, 12:38 pm

I liked this comment on another forum:

The public message so far seems to have been one of "everyones fault but none's to blame"

Fine in public I suppose but worrying if its the same behind closed doors. The 'no blame culture' is bull***t in the workplace and needs to be replaced with one of unique responsibility.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Tue 14 Feb 2012, 4:47 pm

Very true, Scottish rugby mustn't go back to being a cosy closed-shop environment with old boys getting (and keeping) coaching jobs purely because they were popular players.

It's a massive risk having a rugby legend on the coaching team. England had massive problems with Johnson, he was almost impossible to discredit and criticise because of his playing record, when almost every sensible rugby pundit suggested at the time that his appointment was utterly ridiculous.

We seem to have the same issue with Townsend, and we certainly had it with McGeechan last time round post-2000 when he oversaw a pretty awful period in Scottish rugby.

We need to be ruthless in judging our coaches. That's not to be short-termist, and blame them for everything that happens on the pitch, players also need to shoulder responsibility as well, and that awful turning point when Cusiter failed to take the restart certainly had nothing to do with Townsend, Steadman or Robinson, and neither did Blair and Parks screwing up the drop goal attempt at the World Cup, or consipring to allow Argentina to score that try.

But this coaching team have had time, and now they have some great emerging talent. In my view they have been very slow to react to it in this tournament, and they deserve to be criticised for that. The next game is our last home game and we simply have to win it to have any chance on the road in Ireland.

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Post by RuggerRadge2611 Tue 14 Feb 2012, 7:29 pm

The coaching staff would remain blameless if they picked the right players.
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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Wed 15 Feb 2012, 8:59 am

funnyExiledScot wrote:Very true, Scottish rugby mustn't go back to being a cosy closed-shop environment with old boys getting (and keeping) coaching jobs purely because they were popular players.

It's a massive risk having a rugby legend on the coaching team. England had massive problems with Johnson, he was almost impossible to discredit and criticise because of his playing record, when almost every sensible rugby pundit suggested at the time that his appointment was utterly ridiculous.

We seem to have the same issue with Townsend, and we certainly had it with McGeechan last time round post-2000 when he oversaw a pretty awful period in Scottish rugby.

We need to be ruthless in judging our coaches. That's not to be short-termist, and blame them for everything that happens on the pitch, players also need to shoulder responsibility as well, and that awful turning point when Cusiter failed to take the restart certainly had nothing to do with Townsend, Steadman or Robinson, and neither did Blair and Parks screwing up the drop goal attempt at the World Cup, or consipring to allow Argentina to score that try.

But this coaching team have had time, and now they have some great emerging talent. In my view they have been very slow to react to it in this tournament, and they deserve to be criticised for that. The next game is our last home game and we simply have to win it to have any chance on the road in Ireland.
+1 fES, a very well thought out post, totally agree

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Post by funnyExiledScot Wed 15 Feb 2012, 12:07 pm

Yahoo

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