Brady blames Facebook culture for lack of hunger

Brady blames Facebook culture for lack of hunger

Liam Brady believes that British teenagers have so many distractions at home these days that Arsenal had little choice but to expand their global scouting system to find youngsters with the necessary drive to become stars of the future.

Highlighting the manner in which social media and computer games continue to draw attention away from playing football, the Youth Academy head honcho stressed that times have changed hugely from his childhood spent kicking a ball in the streets of Dublin.

“Fewer players come in from the local pool of talent,” Brady told FourFourTwo magazine.

“We’re battling against all the modern things that are around for teenagers, and we can suffer because they are less hungry as a result.

“On the plus side, the money spent on academies is phenomenal and the help that these kids get, to mould them into good professionals, is far superior to what it used to be.

“…growing up in Dublin I played for a young boys’ club. We trained maybe once or twice a week and played on the weekend.

“When I wasn’t with the football club I would practise on my own because I didn’t have anything to keep me at home – we weren’t staying at home with a video game or on Facebook.

“That has been a negative for the pool of players that once existed in the British Isles and you can see why we have to broaden our scouting system to cope with that.”

Despite lamenting the necessity to have to shoe-horn football between Twitter sessions, the legendary Gunner did admit that those kids selected to join his Academy do have all the facilities needed to make it at the top.

“The facilities are brilliant compared to what I inherited. We’ve got our facility up in Shenley that can cater for the scholars when they leave school [at age 16 to 21].

“They get a real insight into exactly what’s needed to break into the first-team squad. The manager has contact with them and will sometimes take over their training sessions.

“In the past, the schoolboys haven’t really had their own training ground but we had Highbury across the road, which had an indoor training area.

“Now we’ve got our own training pitches in Walthamstow, an indoor training area and even an artificial surface. We’ve got beautiful pitches, good dressing rooms, and classrooms where players can do their homework. The change has been amazing.”

As much as Arseblog News would love to blame Facebook and Twitter for its own failure to make it as a top class footballer neither site (or the internet really) existed when we gave up the game at the heady age of 15. Instead we blame sloth, shitness and booze for years of playing with the handbrake on.

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The January 2013 issue of FourFourTwo is running something of an Arsenal special featuring interviews with Arsene Wenger, Ivan Gazidis, Thomas Vermaelen, Santi Cazorla, Kieran Gibbs and also Ken Friar. It’s well worth a look.

Sporter of spectacles, beard & permanent grimace. Poor grammar and spelling mistakes all my own work. Likes it when Arsenal are good.

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64 COMMENTS

  1. As well as the link above, Michael Cox talks about how Arsene’s vision of youth growing and playing together (Diaby, Flamini, Cesc, Denilson, Song) has changed into what it is today.

    http://fourfourtwo.com/blogs/fourfourtwoview/archive/2012/12/07/classmates-to-strangers-the-post-emirates-evolution-of-arsenal-s-midfield.aspx Classmates to Strangers: The post-Emirates evolution of Arsenal’s midfield

    Sam Delaney, a West Ham fan, broadcaster and journalist, writes about his month with Arsenal. Very good read. http://fourfourtwo.com/blogs/fourfourtwoview/archive/2012/12/04/behind-the-scenes-at-arsenal-fourfourtwo-spends-a-month-with-arsene-ivan-and-co.aspx

    I would buy this issue if I could pop by anywhere local selling these things (living in Asia) but I can’t.

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    • Not sure if its the same person, but there seem to be regular links to fourfourtwo appearing in the comments section. Why don’t you get your own traffic?

      Pretty sure blogger outreach tends to be more relationship based than spamming another blogs comments.. Justsaying

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    • Let’s say there are 100 talented youth in England, Spain and Italy respectively.

      50 from each country then lose interest in football because of facebook/games/whatever.

      You have 50 in each. This lessens the talent pool, forcing top clubs to find alternatives for the lessened talent pool in England.

      Not that I fully agree with his opinions, or that his opinions are outright wrong, but he does make a kind of point.

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  2. It’s far too easy to blame computer games and the social network for the lack of kids playing football, but before then it was television, and before that, the fact that the children were working down the mines for 18 hours a day and were obviously too exhausted to play football. Or something like that. I didn’t pay too much attention in school.

    But we’ve still got a decent crop of youngsters who are home grown, so if you need to blame anyone, blame John Terry. Because he’s a cunt.

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    • But he’s right. Back when he was a lad you may have had TV but on the whole it was shite, only had 3 channels, and did NOT keep kids indoors all day. We were all outside whenever the weather permitted, doing stuff like running around, fighting imaginary wars, climbing trees, playing conkers, shooting cats with catapults, apple scrumping, sticklebacking, frogspawning (except it was always toad spawn), snaking into any place you knew you weren’t allowed, going to places like the local castle (because they were all free to get into in those days) and playing different sports. If you were naughty you were punished by being kept in, and it WAS a Horrible punishment.

      We played cricket, tennis, street badminton, tag, doctors and nurses, ring and run, you show me yours and I’ll show you mine, … the list is endless, but for any normal boy the thing you did most was play football, because your heroes were footballers. Everybody knew who the best football players in your area were, and we all dreamed we could make it in a team like Arsenal… yes even lazy gits like me who always got picked to play in goal because I was big.

      Kids don’t do that shit nowadays because if you tried to then some bastard would steal your fucking iPhone while you weren’t looking, and anyway you can’t post on Facebook while “doing a Norman” on that shit from across the alley who thinks he’s fucking George Best.

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      • I think kids would prefer to play outside but the parents often take the safer and easier option of letting them stay in their room. Who can blame them when the 24 hour news cycle feeds them perpetual fear.

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  3. Liam Brady is the problem, our local youth talent is dying out because of him

    We only have youth 2 scouts in London, Brady tends to pick bigger/faster kids over technical players (Win more matches reputation gets bigger)

    Brady has had several conflicts with coaches/scouts who left as a result in a disagreement over youth recruitment/policy

    He’s an old fart who needs to be replaced ASAP

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    • Liam Brady in the very same interview:

      “Around 25 years ago it was all about speed, because speed means power, which can be fashioned into strength. Nowadays there is a greater emphasis on technical ability and we look to improve people’s technique through our methods of coaching.
      “But there is also football intelligence, which is an indefinable thing. It’s difficult to teach things that are instinctive, like knowing where he should be or who he should pass to. The other thing – which is very much the deciding factor – is personality and desire: we definitely can’t teach that.”

      The idea that one of Arsenal’s greatest ever players deliberately picks big kids to win youth games to help improve his standing in the game is quite frankly baffling.

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    • What bollox, Brady is not responsible for the scouting network. That is the job of david court and roy massey.

      Also arsenal do not have just 2 scouts we may have 2 head of scputs in london. I am a scout myself and u dont need to be employed by a club to be a scout. there is about 400 of us working as free lance scouts all over london and the home counties. most of us run own academies and recommend our talented kids. But Brady is right there are less and less kids coming through. Half of my lot regularly blow out cos its too cold! or some other lame excuse yet it dont seem to be too cold on a friday night standing outside the local convenience store woth a bottle of cider!

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  4. Liam Brady has wasted so much money he’s bought young kids abroad who aren’t even as good as our local ones

    We are signing rejects from Chelsea, signing 3/4 players from Barnet’s U14

    Very soon our youth development/academy will die out we need to make radical changes

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    • I’m sorry to hear that it didn’t work out for you John. And yes i agree, it’s not like our academy has produced outstanding footballers like Szczesny, Gibbs and Wilshere and we have a lot of exciting prospects coming through in the next years.

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    • I didn’t know Liam Brady buys kids, that’s pretty terrifying.

      Bit curious how much he got these little kids for and how he’s feeding them.

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    • What do we need then John? You can’t just demand change. You have to tell us what we should change to. What’s your plan John? Breeding program? Kidnapping? Buy Barcelona?

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  5. The real problem is that British kids these days are part of the ‘something-for-nothing’ generation who aren’t prepared to roll up their sleeves and put in the hard work.

    The hungry kids from Africa, Eastern Europe and South America, where they can’t just take it easy and live on benefits, just want it more. It’s the same in other tough world sports like boxing, athletics, tennis and basketball (where the best players all come form the tough US ghettoes).

    In sport, and in life, it’s always been about who wants it the most.

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  6. I love arsenal will always support them, but seriously some board members got no ambitions.

    Just read an article about arsenals future, where Gazidis and Tom Fox, said that arsenal is not only about winning, and that 7 years without any trophy isn’t a big deal.

    I’m not a pessimist or something but comments like that really makes me angry and you kind of starts to ask yourself where will this club be in the future?

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    • You fool. Of course it’s not about just winning. If that were the case we should just go and support Portsmouth or Birmingham. Fact of the matter is, top level clubs are consistent. Then you raise the quality of that consistency until you are always at the top. You don’t go hell for leather, win something, and then die – that’s hardly how a club should be run.

      The way they think is, it is not a big deal to be consistently 4th for 7 years, if you can keep the consistency and raise the level (which we look to have a chance to do now, with the increased level of revenue), and then for the next (more than) 7 years you can sit at the top :) That’s the plan from our board in a nutshell, at least how I see it.

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      • Yes i agree with you mate. Even do you are calling me stupid :D

        But what you have got wrong is competing at a top level. Because the FFP probably won’t stop City and Chelsea from outspending the other clubs. I mean Citys resources are unlimited and the club that offers the best salaries will get the best players in most cases.

        The petrosheiks can bypass FFP by buying more shares in the club.

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  7. I’ve said it before, now I’ll say it again. Facebook, twitter and MySpace are for 16 year old girls. When I was a youth, my Mates and I used to enjoy going out and getting drunk and getting girls. Not twittering from me basement. Pathetic this age were heading into.

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    • When I was a lad we used to go down the pub, drink and bitch about football instead of using these newfangled computers and this world wide web….

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      • In MY day we ‘ad WAR! None o’ this pansy hangin about in pubs like you kids these days – We ad to go out an earn a crust killin Germans or whoever was givin us lip at the time. You don’t know yer born…

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      • Try watching an escalator in any shopping centre the world over. 50% of people step on to it, and then whip out their phone to socialise with other people who are no doubt on escalators (or perhaps waiting for the traffic lights to change).
        The world is fucked because social networks occupy your time but they don’t keep you fit. Also, it’s hard to get girls when they’re all on Facebook every day (ask Frog). Humanity is going to become extinct due to being entirely composed of fat virgins with a single well developed thumb.

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      • Not only that, but have you noticed that’s it’s becoming more and more difficult for people to interact in a proper social setting? People don’t even know how to talk to other peo in person.

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      • haha yeah, but the people your talking about is no-lifers.. And ofc if you spend all your time in a basement with video games and social networks, you probably get problems with the social bit..

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  8. It’s not facebook that’s to blame, it’s lazy scouting. If Arsenal scouts had been willing to wander over to the Coram Fields 8 a side league ten or so years ago, they’d have discovered me. But no, too much trouble for them. So now I’m the great lost talent of my generation.

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  9. If you ask me, this is silly “back in my day” logic. The causality isn’t really there to support this theory. There are so many other factors

    I’m also aware that nobody has asked me.

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  10. I see where he is coming from. I am 18 but have never used Facebook or Twitter. (I know its shocking really) If you need it to connect with relatives or friends that are far away, that is fine. But some of the stuff I have seen on those sites is so desperate, everyone wants attention. There is no point in telling the whole world “I am sitting outside relaxing”. Here in the USA, a doctor once said “Letting my daughter use Facebook would be like giving her crack cocaine.”

    I know it isn’t THAT bad, it depends on how the person uses the sites. For young players, the major downside of those sites could be that they distract them from the hard work on the field, or they build up a reputation for the player before he is any good.

    (I am glad we have Arsene Wenger and our philosophy. We try our best to keep the youngsters grounded and focused. We have class. This is why all of my friends here who are “neutrals”, have an affection for Arsenal. We are the most likeable team/ The team with the least cunts in it.)

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    • OK, so he forgot to mention laptops. Not his fault. Old folks do forget stuff occasionally.

      Point is, young lads today are not outdoors every day playing physical games like football. There are too many distractions to drag them indoors.

      Anybody claiming that they always used to get out and have a kick around on Sunday morning has entirely missed the point and will be laughed at by all us oldies.

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      • Are you suggesting that the quality of young players that are produced worldwide is worse than it was in the pre-Facebook/Twitter era? If you are I’d ask based on what criteria?

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    • The problem young players will have on Facebook is that they will be bombarded by sycophantic fans and followers who will constantly like their every utterance and bombard them with praise for being such great footballers. Then they get onto a real pitch and a proper footballer scythes their legs out from under them to welcome them to the game and they will be stunned to find out that they aren’t the superstars they were led to believe they were by their adoring audience. Then they will retailiate by going on to Twitter and telling the world what a cheating bastard such and such an over-the-hill player is, and never address their own weaknesses as a player.

      Maybe

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  11. when the EPPP does come, we need to increase the number of scouts in England IMO, but I’m not complaing, Serge Gnarby is a top talent.

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  12. It’s not that kids are getting lazy, it’s just hard for them to dream about playing for Arsenal when they get priced out.

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  13. i think thats only part of the problem.
    there are many factors that are effecting local players. especially in cities and these will always effect the quality and quantity of talents. birth rates, family background finance, urban stress, media and multicultures are examples.

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