Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

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ourla
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Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by ourla » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:17 pm

Simple enough question you might think. But in my eyes anything but. There are a few statistical and subjective measurements that might be wheeled out...

League position
Play off achievement
European progress
Wealth
Stadium
Watchability
Coaching staff
Training facilities
Player welfare
Attendance
Media coverage
Number of international players
Number of academy players making it to the first team regular

But then there is the question of how long something must go down to be labelled a complete decline. Clearly you can't win everything every year.

Then there is the question of the relative competition. If you "stand still" but everyone else gets better, does that constitute a decline. Or perhaps more realistically, if you get a little better but several others get a lot better, does that mean we are decline.

So let's hear it folks. On what measure do you base a "decline", over how long and relative to others?
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Grimlish
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by Grimlish » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:25 pm

And whatever the answer to that question, is it a good thing for the game of rugby and/or the PRL?

Cagey Tiger
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by Cagey Tiger » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:27 pm

To "quote" Sir Humphrey Appleby

"Very brave Prime Minister"

I don't think "can of worms" will do justice to what you have just set in motion :smt036

darganj
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by darganj » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:31 pm

I think all of your measures are historic.

To assess a decline you need to look to next season and see if things will be different......

And currently they won't be.

We are missing a 7, centre (preferably someone who plays 12 and 13) and a full back. 3 crucial positions for the way that Leicester play and ones that need big investment. Until we have 3 quality players signed up in those positions then it looks like it will be another trophyless season.

I'm so bored of Leicester banging on about cultural fit and all the usual rubbish. 95% of players won't be a problem so stop whingeing and just get signing.

Can't rely on Allen and Manu. People keep saying "oh we are so unlucky" but Manu is away with England half the time and Allen has had so many injuries. We need quality centres.

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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by RagingBull » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:35 pm

I would say we have been in a slight decline since the HC final But it wasn't till last season things became more apparent with a mix of other teams getting better and us just not clicking (IMO a lot due to injuries to key players).

Our game plan hasn't developed since MOC left he had the joys of Manu and Alex being in his back line to give constant go forward ball with a general limited game plan, he also had senior players at the time of Flood and Murphy in 2 key positions for us. IMO if MOC had the back we have had available it wouldn't have been any better,

Forwards have stayed gone up after a slight dip last season Balmain has developed to be a excellent TH cover.

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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by Noddy555 » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:42 pm

It's too early to reach a conclusion on that, at this stage I would prefer to say that other clubs particularly Saints, Sarries , Wasps, Bath and Exeter have made greater strides over the last 12 months than Tigers. I think we are guilty of taking our eye off the game, whether that has been due to financial constraints, poor coaching & training choices or amateurish management decisions at the top of the club's structure, I will leave you to judge. Personally I think it's a combination of all three of those things. We cannot go on keep blaming the injury situation, other clubs have suffered simimarly and got through it. If it is the injury problem then we must re-examine our training methods and medical backup setup.

Coops
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by Coops » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:54 pm

"Are we in decline"?


Almost certainly yes but why is another debate entirely?

Is it that during Dean Richard's reign there were a lot of very good players gelling at correct time, very much like the RWC in 2007? Johnno et al, and there were only a relative handful of "good" clubs - Tigers, Bath, Gloucester. Are we now suffering because the pool of "good" clubs is increasing - Saracens, Northampton, Exeter, Harlequins - and players have a much better choice. Is the salary cap actually having a diverse effect on Leicester's ability to recruit? When the game turned professional, Leicester were perhaps the only club (operating as a true business) who could afford the decent players - now everyone can bar a few.

Have the other clubs now simply "caught" us up and Leicester haven't moved on in terms of players and playing style?

Is the coaching? Cocker's win ratio is not that far from Dean Richard's - 67% vs 72% respectively. Pat Howard is often viewed as a great era in Tigers history yet only had a win ratio of 67% (oh look the same as Cockers).

I don't know what the problem is but for sure we are still there or thereabouts this season with a few games to go. Top 6 is crucial for me, Top 4 would be great, Play Off Final would be even better. Realistically I think we'll make top 4 but fall at the first.

The Boy Dave
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by The Boy Dave » Tue Apr 28, 2015 3:16 pm

Big losses this season, Slater, Croft, Manu and Allen.
Allen is a leader for others to thrive off.
Slater is a massive workhorse, his type pave the way for the Croft's and Manu's to threaten the wider channels and make linebreaks.
Linebreaks are crucial in rugby and the set up of a team will dictate this ability, personal attributes and the knock on effect on the ability of other players to gel as a team.
Leicester have become rather narrow in attack, the main threat coming from the likes of Mulipola and T. Youngs because the ability to go forward is clearly limited elsewhere.
It's all well and good saying injuries should not be excuse's but the fact remains they are genuine reasons.
I do agree replacements for injuries have been inadequate and in those areas perhaps the word decline does suit.
A club simply canno't lose four of the best players in it's league and not suffer some consequences.
Cheery chappy

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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by mightymouse » Tue Apr 28, 2015 3:24 pm

looking at it logically and point by point

League position - without doubt worst its been for a long time - not out of it yet but realistically unlikely to progress. Is it a blip because of injuries? - last year not that great either (possibly two bad injury years ) - prior to that - won the title - so is 2 years a decline? - .... I suppose it is marginally.

Play off achievement - as above

European progress - this is without doubt a real problem - no progression to QFs and in prior years no final since Edinburgh and no win since Cardiff and that was when Adam was a lad - so decline here - no doubt

Wealth - we seem to make money most years and do fairly well financially each year - No we do not have a benefactor with pots to spend but the question is - Does anyone actually want one of those? - not me for certain! - actually I think if the club wanted such a character then I think we would be first on the potential candidates radar - because of the natural fan base, merchandising and other good commercials going on - the fact is we don't - so in my view not in decline

Watchability - hmm not great at the moment - but then we have been through grim periods before and as long as we win who cares - it's now it looks poor and results are poor it starts to matter - we have also been through times of watching some good rugby and it would be good if we could get back to that

Coaching staff - debatable - would be better if Deano and Pat Howard were here but they are not - not great at the moment - a definite decline but next year could be good

Stadium - good and getting better - no decline there
others have football stadiums - we could of had one and declined it - some may think Ricoh is better in my view it is far worse - capacity may be an issue but is slowly being addressed.

Training facilities - look good and they are looking to move to better - certainly no decline - looking at other places on TV they seem no better to me

Attendance - still good figures and ST figures - most clubs would be very grateful for our regular attendance - a lot of noise is made about the football stadium clubs with big crowds but they are fickle and most of the tickets are free or cheap - lets see if they stand the test of time like ours

Player Welfare - it would seem to me we are one of the best in this area - guys injured for months and still paid - concussions victims given proper breaks and not pressured back to play - new contracts offered to long term injured - if they choose not to take them up then that is a player issue not the clubs. no decline there

Media coverage - good locally - nationally not sure what is meant - coverage comes with success - if we were winning we would be covered more - simple - slight decline but that is linked to success

Number of international players - seems plenty - not all English but we still trot out a fair contingent of those. - no real decline there

Academy players in 1st team - fewer than there were but then there seems plenty in others teams so we must be doing something right, maybe we are just more fussy than them!

overall there are declines in on pitch performance but not really in off field - get in a new coach, done, some new players , partly done, get back the injured , hopefully done by next year and we should be able to compete domestically. Europe is the harder one to solve. the solution is probably higher wage cap but I think that would not benefit us in the long run

ourla
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by ourla » Tue Apr 28, 2015 3:25 pm

darganj wrote:I think all of your measures are historic.

To assess a decline you need to look to next season and see if things will be different......

And currently they won't be.
Respectfully I disagree. A decline can largely only be seen historically. We can look back over the last 20/30/40 years and make an honest evaluation of both the on and off field situation of the club and how it compares with now. We have a very limited view of the future. We know of certain changes... Mauger, new signings, new stand being built. But we don't know how all that will work out, whether we make other signings (backs), when the training ground move will take place, etc. We also know how other clubs are situated both on and off the field now and compared to the past. So the question is directed at what we know and can judge. At least 90% in my view of which is historical.
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darganj
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by darganj » Tue Apr 28, 2015 3:55 pm

Rugby pre 2000s is incomparable to the game now.

Premiership rugby of 2008 is incomparable to Premiership rugby now. Whole landscape has changed. Financially especially. It is a lot harder to win now than 10 years ago. It is a decline but it can be fixed if Leicester move with the times.

Looking at Premiership wins over last 15 years is like comparing Gareth Edwards to Will Genia. Can't be done.

voice of the crumbie
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by voice of the crumbie » Tue Apr 28, 2015 3:58 pm

Good summary mightymouse. Agree with your comments. :smt023
Tigers for the premiership and European Cup. Get behind the team and make some noise!!

Phil B
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by Phil B » Tue Apr 28, 2015 4:02 pm

ourla wrote:
darganj wrote:I think all of your measures are historic.

To assess a decline you need to look to next season and see if things will be different......

And currently they won't be.
Respectfully I disagree. A decline can largely only be seen historically.
I agree, you can only assess a decline by looking at how things have got worse, and over time.

I personally don't think we are in decline.

We have not done as well as previous years, (obvious statement) and we are not as powerful as we were (perhaps not obvious, but that is my assessment. I think this is because the others have gone ahead, whereas we, relatively, have stood still).

For me it's a case of regaining ground rather than any form of major surgery.
I could agree with you...but then we'd both be wrong.

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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by Downsouth » Tue Apr 28, 2015 7:46 pm

Are we in decline or have other clubs caught up? Can we really expect to be top of the table with the injuries we have had this season and other clubs (allegedly?) ignoring the salary cap whilst we are still balancing the books whilst improving the stadium.

If you take Northampton, if North had been injured for the same time as Manu, would they be top of the table? Bath, Wasps and Sarries could all fall flat on their faces financially (why anyone would invest in Wasps with all the warnings in their prospectus is beyond me).

What does concern me is the often lack of penetration in attack without Manu and Allen. That is where I hope Mauger will improve things (especially if he can sneak Savea out of NZ with him).

We can't accept mediocrity, but 4th place this season would be a good result.

tigercaspian
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Re: Are Leicester Tigers in decline?

Post by tigercaspian » Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:23 pm

Cockers would appear to agree with Downsouth then??

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/rugby-union/32496700

I am very happy we have made it to top 4 and in with a shout. I am also very confident that with less injuries we would have had a better season.

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