Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Virgil Van Dijk, the star defender from the Netherlands shifted base to Liverpool from Southampton before the 2018-19 season. Just one year down the line, he is one of the finest defenders in English football. Harry Maguire was signed by Manchester United before the commencement of the 2019-20 Premier League season for a sum of close to US$100 million. Also, Aaron Wan-Bissaka left Crystal Palace in order to join Manchester United. 

Many of the smaller clubs have been losing promising young talents in recent times. This is how it goes: A promising young talent emerges out of a small club’s youth system. He plays just a handful of matches for the club and makes his presence felt. Consequently, he catches the attention of a big club ( say Arsenal). They acquire the player’s services on loan for a year and provide him with training. All of this is followed by a million-dollar deal to acquire the player’s services permanently. 

Nothing works like money, right? The moment a bigger club makes an offer worth US$100 million, smaller clubs let their players go. This creates a void within the smaller club’s team. Furthermore, it hampers the club’s chances of improving its numbers. 

Take this for an example: How many of us know that the likes of Victor Wanayama, Toby Alderweireld and Callum Chambers were once members of Southampton FC? Yes, you heard that right. All of these players have played for Southampton FC, a club that has been struggling to win matches in recent times, at some point in their careers. Southampton finished 16th in the 2018-19 season. Well, had they decided to retain the likes of Virgil Van Dijk and Victor Wanayama, they would have had one of the most promising teams in the Premier League. 

Premier League is a game of staggering numbers. It is also the world’s most-watched football league. Each year, a lot of spectators get their hospitality packages and VIP tickets booked in order to watch their favourite stars in action. It is one of the biggest corporate events on earth. Get in touch with some of the top hospitality companies in the UK to get your hands on match tickets.

How to Retain Players?

Retaining players, in all fairness, happens to be an art. Here are a few things that can be done in order to ensure player retention

Don’t Run After Money

Money’s not everything. Yes, you heard that right. Smaller clubs want money to keep the day-to-operations intact. Unlike the heavyweights, these clubs don’t have a myriad of resources at their disposal. Despite all of the financial constraints, smaller clubs need to start retaining players. Retaining talent would help improve the club’s on-field performances. Consequently, investments and sponsorships would start flowing in.

Ask Them to Keep Their Egos Aside

As a manager, you should be able to get the team to play together as a single cohesive unit. This is something Claudio Ranieri did really well during his time at Leicester City. He asked them to keep their egos aside and concentrate on working towards a common goal. 

Encourage them 

A manager is just as good as his team. Nothing works like motivation. If you keep encouraging your players, they will always be ready to give their best shot. Hike their match fee if they’ve been performing consistently for a considerable amount of time. All of this does have a positive impact on a player’s on-field performance.

Build their Careers

If your team has a considerable number of promising youngsters, then invest in building their careers instead of selling them off to the rivals. Provide them with ample opportunities to showcase their talent. Also, have faith in them if they are going through a rough patch. 

Such small steps can go a long way in uplifting the fortunes of a struggling club. 

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