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Ludo*1

Your Manager, As A Player

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I've done this sort of thread a few times over the years, the most recent being:

So here goes, Championship edition:

1. John Robertson
2. Allan Johnston
3. David Hopkin
4. Gary Caldwell
5. Stevie Crawford
6. Robbie Neilson
7. Ian McCall
8. James McPake
9. Jim Goodwin
10. Dick Campbell

Really tough one this time round as other than McCall, Johnston and Robertson the rest were more the type that were all about making the absolute most out of limited ability and some did so better than others. I've tried to be fair and judge it on their careers, their performances and indeed, subjectively how much I liked each one as a player has probably sneaked in. For example, I'd have McCall higher than Caldwell in 4th in terms of ability, but McCall woefully underperformed in his playing career considering his talent.

I'd have McPake ahead of Neilson but Neilson had the better career arguably. And it feels harsh putting Goodwin down in 9th. I think this list is the most subjective one I've done as it's arguably the weakest too and as such it's easy to argue over positioning. Over to P&B.

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7 minutes ago, Ludo*1 said:

I've done this sort of thread a few times over the years, the most recent being:

So here goes, Championship edition:

1. John Robertson
2. Allan Johnston
3. David Hopkin
4. Gary Caldwell
5. Stevie Crawford
6. Robbie Neilson
7. Ian McCall
8. James McPake
9. Jim Goodwin
10. Dick Campbell

Really tough one this time round as other than McCall, Johnston and Robertson the rest were more the type that were all about making the absolute most out of limited ability and some did so better than others. I've tried to be fair and judge it on their careers, their performances and indeed, subjectively how much I liked each one as a player has probably sneaked in. For example, I'd have McCall higher than Caldwell in 4th in terms of ability, but McCall woefully underperformed in his playing career considering his talent.

I'd have McPake ahead of Neilson but Neilson had the better career arguably. And it feels harsh putting Goodwin down in 9th. I think this list is the most subjective one I've done as it's arguably the weakest too and as such it's easy to argue over positioning. Over to P&B.

I don't think there's anything remotely arguable about it, Neilson had a much better playing career than McPake did. Easily.

I think it's a surprisingly good line up to be fair this year. We've a lot of high level experience in Management chairs in the Championship. Part of it are pretty subjective. Gary Naysmith for instance would probably go straight in at No 1 if he'd still been with us considering he has 46 caps and was an English Premiership regular for almost a decade.

Dick Campbell is clearly 10th with a career confined largely to Scotland's lower divisions and non League.

I think McPake and Goodwin are a bit of a coin toss in 8th and 9th. McPake played most of his career outside the top division though he certainly had spells with Hibs and Dundee (and briefly with Livi) at top level in Scotland and played a couple of season in the English Championship with Coventry. Goodwin played most of his career outside the top division too, indeed mostly outside the top two divisions in England but he did spend time in the Sottish Premiership, won the League Cup and got one cap for Ireland.

Ian McCall could have been so much better as a player than he was but he had a long career with a good few stops, most of it outside top level. He had undeniable talent though. 7th probably right for him.

Robbie Neilson and Stevie Crawford are also a bit of a coin flip. Genuinely surprised to see on checking that Crawford has 25 Scotland caps. I thought he had 4 or 5! Neilson only got 1 cap but generally played at a higher level for better teams for longer than Crawford did.

Top 4 are probably a level beyond the others though. In terms of caps, Gary Caldwell has 55, Allan Johnston has 18, John Robertson has 16 and David Hopkin just 7. Caldwell however played at a time when Scottish talent was more sparse, particularly at centre back. Robertson and Hopkin were up against some quality players for game time in their eras and Johnston suffered a lot with injury. Caldwell played for Celtic and won the League up here twice. He had a reasonably long and successful spell with Hibs too and played a couple of seasons in the English top level with Wigan. Robertson only ever really excelled with Hearts where he made over 500 appearances and won the Scottish Cup at the end of his career. He barely got a look in at Newcastle. Johnston had a lot of clubs and didn't settle massively long at any of them but he played a year for Rangers and had spells at Sunderland and Middlesbrough in the English top level as well as in France with Rennes. He also had 4 or 5 years with Kilmarnock in the Scottish top level at the end of his career. Hopkin spent the vast majority of his career down South which makes him slightly harder to compare but he played a lot of decent level football down South between Premiership and Championship though, bookending his career with spells at his home club Morton.

I think in achievements you'd have to put Caldwell 1st. He has more caps than the others added together and probably more trophies too. The other three could be ranked variously depending how you want to look at it. I think I'd be inclined to have Robertson 2nd, and Hopkin / Johnston more or less tied in 3rd and 4th.

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Crawford number 1.

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Caldwell probably deserves to be higher, but it doesn't feel like he should be.

Does that make any sense?

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Caldwell has 3 goals in the Champions League. OK, they're all own goals but you don't get to score them if you don't play in it. Also won the FA Cup in one of the bigger shocks in the final I can remember in 30 years, probably since Wimbledon beating Liverpool in 1988. 

He's definitely had the best career in terms of trophies and moments, would say Robertson and Johnston were better players.

Also this might be worth 1st on its own

Spoiler

Image result for gary caldwell france

 

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Caldwell is a weird one. His career suggests he should probably be number 1 but his actual ability is more reflective of the lower placings.

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McCall, a bit unlucky to be 7th

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4 minutes ago, ecto said:

McCall, a bit unlucky to be 7th

Possibly the most talented but his application at times prevented him having a career to meet his talents, imo.

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3 hours ago, Skyline Drifter said:

I don't think there's anything remotely arguable about it, Neilson had a much better playing career than McPake did. Easily.

Did he? They both received a cap from their respective countries.  They both played in Europe. They both played for the respective Edinburgh sides followed by a stint at the Dundee clubs - Both in the top flight of Scottish football.  McPake appeared in about double the English Championship games Neilson did (According to wiki - Neilson listed as 26 with McPake at 68).  Neilson played in a lot more top flight games in Scotland with Neilson at around 221 and McPake nearer 130.

I'd shade it to Neilson, but I wouldn't say there is a massive difference between their playing careers tbh. They even retired around the same age (Although McPake was done at the age of 31) which in my opinion, 3 more seasons of top flight football would have meant his stats were identical to Neilson's.

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Neilson played for better teams in the Premiership though, Hearts were better while he played for them than McPakes Hibs team. 

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10 minutes ago, Grant228 said:

Neilson played for better teams in the Premiership though, Hearts were better while he played for them than McPakes Hibs team. 

Yep, hence why I shaded it to Neilson.

 

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I have to admit, I always thought Neilson had a better career than it actually looks like he had, maybe playing for so long in decent Hearts team influenced that.

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1 hour ago, Ludo*1 said:

Did he? They both received a cap from their respective countries.  They both played in Europe. They both played for the respective Edinburgh sides followed by a stint at the Dundee clubs - Both in the top flight of Scottish football.  McPake appeared in about double the English Championship games Neilson did (According to wiki - Neilson listed as 26 with McPake at 68).  Neilson played in a lot more top flight games in Scotland with Neilson at around 221 and McPake nearer 130.

I'd shade it to Neilson, but I wouldn't say there is a massive difference between their playing careers tbh. They even retired around the same age (Although McPake was done at the age of 31) which in my opinion, 3 more seasons of top flight football would have meant his stats were identical to Neilson's.

Maybe a personal slant then although I still think your stats show it fairly clearly in Neilson's favour. I confess I didn't realise McPake even qualified for Northern Ireland let alone had played a game for them, but Neilson played a lot more games in a better Premiership side than any of McPake's.

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Goodwin was a decent player, not just a thug.

The guy nutmegged David Villa and made it look easy.

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Stevie Crawford was part of one the greatest non-OF strike partnerships in modern times, played 25 times for Scotland and scored over 150 career goals.

He also played for all 4 Fife senior sides, which I believe is very rare indeed. Halfway to managing all 4 as well!

I'd take him over AJ, Caldwell, Neilson or Hopkin any day...maybe not as a manager though.

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Davie Hopkin is comfortably on top of that list. 

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                                         Wright

Neilson --- Caldwell --- McPake --- Campbell

McCall --- Goodwin --- Hopkin --- Johnston
                          
                       Crawford --- Robertson

I've borrowed Tommy Wright from St Johnstone to have a go in goal but that's not a half bad team.

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