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Exiled Wiganer

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Posts posted by Exiled Wiganer

  1. 12 minutes ago, The British Lion said:

    Apologies on the catch up. What did Lenagan and Radlinski say they offered Williams to go back to Wigan? And what's the reasoning why he didn't?

    They just said that he was offered the biggest contract in the 149 year history of the club. (I rather doubt that can be true, given how much Offiah and Hanley were taking home decades ago, when our wage bill was higher than now). Williams told Wigan that he wanted a new challenge. Rads surmised he was offered more money by Wire, as well. 

  2. 3 minutes ago, Pigeon Lofter said:

    Thinking Saints would trample Catalan with the score then at 30-12, I wandered off to have dinner-only to return when the post-match interviews were taking place 😂 and so missed all the late drama.

    Will Sky re-broadcast the game, be it highlights or otherwise? Thanks. 

    They are likely to put together a highlights package… just start watching at 75 minutes in. 

    • Haha 1
  3. 2 hours ago, Scubby said:

    Where does Iain Thornley fit into this if you are losing the likes of Jackson Hastings, Oliver Gildart and Zak Hardaker? 

    Thornley for Gildart is not an exciting swap, but against that we needed to spend money on some big lads, so the money was better spent on 2 NRL props. We are replacing Hastings with someone, as yet unknown and if we lose Hardaker we will be able to replace him. If Field is any good (and wasn’t he playing in the NRL last year?) and French comes back fit and well, then we will still have some players who can entertain. Tbh, if we lose Hardaker and sign an attacking hooker, that would really lift morale. 

    If we had Maguire or Holgate coaching us, or someone else of that calibre, people would come out in bigger numbers again. Those coaches vastly improved the players available, and many of us believe there is a lot of talent in the existing squad, 

    • Like 1
  4. 2 hours ago, M j M said:

    I'm amazed if you're reassured by that. There didn't seem anything concrete about the future, plenty of pretending to take responsibility whilst not really doing so and a lot of wishful thinking.

    There is two things that matters in a business like ours - can you pay the bills, and can you invest in the team and its coach to the maximum allowed? On both counts we are fine - the Lenaghans will write cheques until the billionaire takes over. 

    It is an absurdly simple business - get the best possible coach and get entertaining players and the rest looks after itself. 

  5. That’s a cracking read. Good on them. I hadn’t quite appreciated how awful Latics have been, but that’s not surprising. Hopefully they’ll go bust again, Danson can spend some of his loose change on a new stadium and they can crash and burn. 

    The key new bit of info for me was the succession planning - ie all will be well even if we have a few more years of taking a bath. 

  6. I think Wigan will win this, as we are beginning to play teams who have recently played as frequently as we have. Plus, Lam’s position has been clarified, and IL has confirmed that our part owner billionaire is ready and willing to step up once he has finished his stint. We have not instantly appointed Wane and Peet, which is encouraging, and have made it clear we are very much in the market for someone to replace Hastings... So, all in all a very good week for the club. 

    It is a shame we will be watching Charnley and Williams (who was offered the most generous salary in the club’s history to re-sign for us) playing for the wrong side; they gave us a lot of good moments. 

  7. 49 minutes ago, M j M said:

    FFS do people really want two small leagues with convoluted cross league games that will mostly have only one winner?

    The sport is crying out for some stability and clarity of leadership and all we're getting are promises of more change, confusing league structures, less credibility and more loop fixtures.

    Just stop it will you.

    FFS, stop being so petty. It’s a perfectly reasonable suggestion. I appreciate that you might find it too confusing. But I am sure some grown up would be able to explain it to you. 

    • Haha 1
  8. A few things on that: 

    - I am pleased he is in the position he is in, as he is sensible and loves our game; 

    - I agree with 2 leagues of 10 (and have long thought this was the way to go) - I would make sure there were cross league games every year, so that we knew there would always be a Bulls-Leeds, Leigh-Wigan, Cas-Fev game every year; 

    - I agree that the owners should talk up the game, even if many of us are as despondent as we have ever been, and agree with their dire warnings; and 

    - you may as well go to the bank as go to PE: there is no magic, they simply loan cash so you get a short term sugar rush paid for from “efficiencies” and “magic” improvements which good companies could have sorted out themselves. And then you have to pay the fiddler.

    • Like 1
  9. I am not sure whether it matters what we write on TRL, given that it’s a local site for local leaugies. Of course we all know we are privileged to follow TGG, and that, say, the recent Hull derby was more entertaining than 1000 kick for touch games and 20 Premier League games. 

    However, personally I feel very gloomy indeed for the NH game. It isn’t simply the decline in crowds, media interest and money among the English clubs, it is the threat to us that the NRL poses. If they continue on this path - taking control of the international game, and making it pretty much irrelevant, aside from possibly some games among themselves, then we could find ourselves a feeder league in which we can’t retain any big names, with the knock on effect for crowds, media interest and money. And the last is by far the most important. Talent always follows money, and unless we have the capacity to compete financially, we will continue on this slide to semi pro irrelevance. 

    • Like 2
  10. 4 minutes ago, The Frying Scotsman said:

    Agree with most of what you are saying, but while Johnstone has a lot of talent with the ball in hand, there are others parts of his game where he is far short of anything that could be described as "world class". If he was to improve on these parts of his game, then perhaps he could one day be considered as a world class player, but at the moment he is well short of that. (Not just my opinion either.... If he was anywhere near World Class, NRL sides would be all over him). 

    OK - in that case we have no world class players in SL then. Which is probably the case. 

    • Like 1
  11. I won’t quote EEP, as it was such a long post, but I am not convinced by the central thrust. The club’s problems - as clearly identified - are a direct result of believing that there is an inherent advantage in developing and relying on our own players. That has been the club’s focus, and it has lead to massive disinterest and an unfair reliance on players who are simply not good enough simply because we “developed” them. We are getting the wrong answers because we are asking the wrong questions - the only question the board should ask is how can they get star players on the field. Forget where they come from. Every hour spent on anything else is an hour wasted. I am not suggesting that we ditch our Academy entirely, though I would be happy enough with a Wigan Borough approach, but that we should instead invest in the first team’s success instead of carrying out “community” development, or other non first team activities. 

    I agree that marketing needs to be improved, but it’s far far easier to do that if you have star players to sell. You can have as many fancy dress themed game nights as you like, but Wiganers will only come out every week to watch players like Amos Roberts rather than Liam Byrne. Ditch everything non core, invest in the best possible coach, and entertaining stars, and then market them. We have plenty of resources to do all of that, but are deliberately choosing to try to sell an Academy side as first team for a major club. And fewer and fewer people are being fooled by it. 

    Incidentally, I think this is a mistake the whole game is making - wasn’t it Hearn who looked at us as a sport and concluded that we had no stars? He was dead right. 

    With the NRL having cut off the rest of the world, and seeing us solely as a feeder league, and union having left us far far behind, then, unless we as a club and a game aim high again, we are toast as a sport. 

  12. 5 minutes ago, ELBOWSEYE said:

    Cameron Smith was not a bums on seat player. But was not just world class but an all time great. I think your getting the two area's mixed up. 

    No I am not, I very clearly set out my test and then applied it. I wouldn’t take my kids to watch Cameron Smith play as their first game, as what he does is prosaic and admirable rather than entertaining. I would rather show them Clark, or would have rather shown them Cunningham in his prime, as you only need to watch them for a few minutes to realise how hard but exciting our game can be. 

  13. 9 minutes ago, M j M said:

    Two points from the above - 

    Wigan haven't been much in the entertainment business since Michael Maguire pioneered anti-Rugby. That's something the club can address with its coaching appointments as much as anything else. Reappointing Wane as it seems they've done isn't going to fix that although it may put a bit of backbone into the team.

    Secondly I think you need to ask exactly why it is that Wigan academy products appear to want to leave the club more often than their contemporaries at the other big clubs. Of course you're going to struggle to build a dominant team whilst that keeps happening. The NRL will be appealing for some for sure but there doesn't seem to be much on the other side of the equation that makes players want to stay. And that to me suggests some sort of cultural issues at the club.

    You may be right, on both counts, but my central argument remains the same - the only thing that should matter to Wigan Rugby League Football Club Ltd is first team success, and employing dozens of people to do “development” seems (purely from where I am sitting) to be at best draining resources to no ostensible benefit, and at worst leading the club on a downward spiral. The bottom line is that we would get far better crowds if we had star overseas players in a winning or even entertaining side than fielding the dozen home grown “god loves a trier” players we currently have. Looking over the Hill, I don’t remember Scunthorpe and Long having gone to Cowley...

    • Like 1
  14. If the test of a great player is whether they can do something which makes us gasp with amazement, then I can only think of one box office player in SL, and that’s a fit Tom Johnstone. I can’t think of a single current SL player who would get into a best of SL team. That said, all of the players mentioned above are good players, and Clark in particular is very watchable, they are just not so good that I would go out of my way to buy a ticket to watch them as a neutral. 

    • Like 1
    • Confused 1
  15. 2 minutes ago, M j M said:

    I thought you were on a wind up the first time you posted this. But apparently not 😐

    It is a simple enough argument - a club who can field an Ellery Hanley will inspire more people to watch in person, and on the TV, and to become involved in the game than any number of one week training camps lead by, with respect, well meaning sporting nobodies.

    I have only been following Wigan for 40 odd years, but I have relatives who have been following us for over 80 years, and love our club to bits. And who inspires them - Billy Boston, Jim Sullivan, Martin Offiah, Brett Kenny, and the greatest of all, Ellery. None of them Wiganers.  

    Watching these players is what inspires people to join clubs, buy boots, throw a ball around. I don’t wish to denigrate the well meaning efforts of many associated with the club, but they are wasting everyone’s time and millions of pounds if they think that the best way forward is for Wigan to develop Academy players, for them to leave as soon as they get the chance. Ferguson and Kenny were here for barely a full season between them, but they left an indelible mark on the club and its supporters. We are in the entertainment business, and we aren’t doing any entertaining. 

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