Hairdryer treatment a thing of the past
April 11, 2014
Mike Catt and Graham Rowntree - one half of the England coaching set-up © Getty Images
As members of England's current coaching team, Rowntree and Catt know only selective use of the technique made famous by Sir Alex Ferguson will provoke the desired response. "I've worked with plenty of guys and all they've known is the hairdryer. It's like a dog barking - after a while you stop listening to it," Rowntree said. "You have to have it in your locker to pull out a nuclear bomb when needed.
"We have a good craic and you have to enjoy the environment, but sometimes players can get too comfortable, so they need a cattle prod. But that's a good dilemma to have rather than picking people up the whole time because they're in the doldrums."
Catt agrees that the psyche of the current player needs careful navigating and on the occasions when a tongue-lashing is required, Rowntree is the best man to administer it.
"A lot of coaching comes down to man-management," Catt said. "Ten or 12 years ago you still had coaches and managers screaming and shouting at you and they'd get a reaction from that.
"Now you have to man-manage people in a completely different way. Kids don't like being shouted at any more. There are different ways of getting the best out of them, but they do need to be shouted at every now and again.
"Some of them you have to put your arm around, some you can b******....in which case you send them across to Graham! There are ways to manage the individual to get the best out of them. That's the difference compared to a few years ago with guys like Jack Rowell, Clive Woodward."
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