Hull manager Phil Brown draws inspiration from Arsene Wenger
01 October 2009 12:15
Brown is coming under mounting pressure following a dismal start to the season that has seen Hull slip to second bottom of the Premier League with just four points to their credit - a year after they were riding high in the table in their first season of top-flight football.
Despite the club's slump, Brown will take heart from Arsenal manager Wenger's emphasis on long-term planning and Manchester United counterpart Ferguson's strength in the face of adversity as he plots the way forward.
Brown said: "The one thing you can take from Arsene Wenger is a long-term plan, a bigger picture and I think it is marvellous the way he has come out and made £38 million profit and decided not to spend it and will only spend it when he decides to. That kind of decision has to be the manager's.
"Hats off to anyone that stays in the job for more than three years as Sir Alex Ferguson has because he was under an awful lot of pressure after three years at Manchester United and now he is 23 years.
"You have to go through these kinds of times to get the 10, 11, 12 or 13 years' service. Mr Wenger has done a marvellous job and he deserves full credit.
"Our season has started off more slowly than last year but last season started off at an unbelievable rate of knots and probably we set ourselves a precedent.
"This year with the slow start, confidence is now at a premium at the moment. The support we are getting is not at a premium at the moment.
"But it's a two-way street and we need to acquit ourselves in the manner we have over the last two-and-a-half years to get the supporters behind us. Everyone has to pull together.
"It's the case with every manager in the country - not just me or Premier League managers - everyone is going through the same process of trying to establish themselves this season.
"You do your travelling around and talk to managers and everyone is feeling the same amount of pressure at the same time. That's just the nature of the game."
Brown was speaking ahead of Wigan's visit to the KC Stadium on Saturday, as he addressed the media at the club's Cottingham training ground, with Hull needing to bounce back from a 6-1 mauling at Liverpool.
"It has been a tough week, a long week," Brown said. "I got the boys in on Sunday to analyse and dissect what went on at Liverpool but I am confident that our game-plan was the right one because it was the same one employed by Fiorentina in the Champions League midweek.
"We have to roll our sleeves up and get back to the basics of hard work and then hopefully the shape and discipline and football will follow.
"I have never had a big stick. I try to manage individuals and teams as honestly as possible and try to manage in the manner you were managed. The disciplinarians I had when I was playing were more than helpful to me and the respect you got from that is there for everyone to see."
He might not have a big stick but Brown is planning to wield the axe ahead of the Wigan game.
"Tough decisions will have to be made with regards to team selection and the way we play," Brown said.
"I watched with great interest Wigan against Chelsea and they equipped themselves very well and Wigan will come to the KC Stadium with a new-found confidence thinking they will turn us over and we will have to do something about that.
"For the last two-and-a-half years the foundation of any success we have had has been based on clean sheets and that clean sheet mentality.
"That doesn't mean that you will have a zero next to your name on Saturday but it does mean that if you do concede you have to have the same mentality to get the next clean sheet. That's gone out the window.
"An awful lot of finger pointing has gone on in terms of goalkeepers and the back four but if your men in front do not protect their defenders and goalkeeper they will get exposed.
"Getting back to the 10 or 11 defending when we haven't got the ball is the discipline I am after."