New O’s boss to end the chaos

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Joshua Richards

FOR­MER Italy in­ter­na­tional Fabio Liverani yes­ter­day be­came the fourth man in three months to pick the Ley­ton Ori­ent team.

But the 38-year-old is con­fi­dent Bris­bane Road’s man­age­rial merry-go-round is set to stop spin­ning now he has come to the fair.

After long-term in­cum­bent Rus­sell Slade left for Cardiff City in ac­ri­mo­nious cir­cum­stances at the end of Septem­ber, his for­mer as­sis­tant Kevin Nu­gent and Ori­ent’s ap­par­ent jack of all trades Mauro Mi­lanese failed to in­spire an im­me­di­ate up­ward spike in re­sults.

It led to Ital­ian bil­lion­aire owner Francesco Bec­chetti ap­point­ing Liverani as boss on a twoand-a-half year deal ear­lier this week, with Mi­lanese re­turn­ing to the sport­ing di­rec­tor role he orig­i­nally as­sumed in the sum­mer.

On Thurs­day, how­ever, he acted as in­ter­preter for his for­mer Peru­gia team­mate Liverani, who in­sisted his decision to un­pack his suit­case and lay roots in east London was not an act of naivety.

“The chal­lenge is very good and I’m en­thu­si­as­tic,” said Liverani, whose only pre­vi­ous man­age­rial ex­pe­ri­ence was a six-game stint at Genoa.

“The project is not short-term, it’s longterm. Ev­ery gaffer needs time, I’ve got a long con­tract, so I have the chance to try to play well and get points to climb the ta­ble this sea­son, but also to pro­gram the play­ers for the fu­ture.

“The sit­u­a­tion isn’t good, but I will try to do my job to trans­form things for the Ley­ton Ori­ent sup­port­ers.

“Re­al­is­ti­cally, to be suc­cess­ful this sea­son is to chase down the teams in front of us and climb the ta­ble as quickly as pos­si­ble, to keep away from the bot­tom four. The tar­get is max­i­mum points for ev­ery- one and we’ll see our sit­u­a­tion. The next six games we will see where we are and what we can achieve for the du­ra­tion of the sea­son.”

The Ori­ent hi­er­ar­chy in­sist the plan since Slade’s de­par­ture has al­ways been to iden­tify a “good coach for the long-term” with Nu­gent, then Mi­lanese, only ever act­ing as “bridges”.

Liverani and Bec­chetti first spoke two weeks ago and since then the new boss has used Wyscout –a painstak­ingly de­tailed data­base, used by

clubs all over the world – to learn as much as pos­si­ble about his play­ers as well as the strengths and weak­nesses of the in­di­vid­u­als he is set to come up against in League One.

And while Liverani ac­cepts he can­not trans­form Ori­ent’s for­tunes overnight, he hopes some sub­tle changes will see them start to re­sem­ble the side that reached the League One play-off fi­nal once again.

“For a group that was so close at Wem­b­ley last year, it is im­pos­si­ble that they are in this sit­u­a­tion,” added Liverani, who, in 2001, be­came the first black man to play for Italy. “So I’m con­fi­dent we will climb the ta­ble and that this group is stronger than they are show­ing now. With work and at­ti­tude, we can make progress.

“The sys­tem they have played in the last four years is the base, be­cause to try and change ev­ery­thing is not easy with lit­tle time. “At the mo­ment, what I want to do is play with the same sys­tem but make the play­ers play to their best.

“If dif­fer­ent teams play 4-4-2, not ev­ery 4-4-2 sys­tem is the same as the next, so it will be about talk­ing to the play­ers about lit­tle changes to their ex­ist­ing roles, not a com­plete change of sys­tem.

“At the mo­ment I’m learn­ing about foot­ball, about the pitch, about the sit­u­a­tions I’m pre­par­ing for in train­ing.

“But I can see the play­ers con­cen­trate, they want to do well, and the most im­por­tant thing is a good start.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Images

LIMITED EX­PE­RI­ENCE: Liverani took charge of Genoa for six matches MU­SI­CAL CHAIRS: From left, Rus­sell Slade, Mauro Mi­lanese and Kevin Nu­gent have all picked the Ley­ton Ori­ent team this sea­son

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