By Ryan Booth

When listing the many controversies within football it’s likely that club ownership, and more importantly, managers’ relationships with these owners will be towards the top of your list.

With over 40 years’ worth of management experience, Roy Hodgson is likely to have had his fair share of disputes with his bosses throughout his time in the game.  

Speaking exclusively to UCFB as part of the LMA Insight Series, the Crystal Palace boss insisted that it is crucial for managers to forge a strong working relationship with club owners should they want to be successful.

He explained: “I think that the relationship with the owners, the chairman or the CEO with your technical director, these are unbelievably important relationships because these are the people that have got the final responsibility for the football club.”

The former England boss continued: “(They are responsible for) keeping the club going, maintaining the legacy of the club, and moving the club forward in the right direction. They make an important decision when they appoint you as manager because they’re investing a lot of responsibility and authority in you, they’re virtually saying to you: ‘we’re trusting you to lead our club forward.’

“So you need a good relationship with them, you need a very strong bond of communication so that they are aware of all the things you’re trying to do for the club, and the thoughts that are going through your head. They’re not sitting in some ivory tower somewhere while you’re in your ivory tower wondering what on earth is going on. So, I think that’s a vital importance.”

Managers and supporters are often frustrated with their owners’ actions, however, Hodgson suggested that club owners are regularly required to work under difficult circumstances.

“You’ve got to realise I think, as a manager, that they have these enormous constraints on the business side,” he says. “They have budgets to fill, they have losses and profits to take into consideration, and some of the things that they might want you to do for their club in order to help keep the club afloat on a financial basis are things that you’re going to need to take into consideration, because once again, we don’t work in isolation.”

Despite showing a level of understanding towards the constraints many club bosses face, Hodgson stressed that managers should primarily be left out of business matters, and that their focuses should be shifted towards what happens on the pitch.

He concluded: “I think that the job of being a football manager should really be restricted, or as restricted as much as possible, to doing the job that you’ve been appointed to do and that you’re being paid to do. That is to make certain that the players at the club placed at your disposal are getting the best work they can do and are going out onto the field every weekend in the best possible shape to get a win.”