If there’s one thing I know about team-building exercises it’s that those involved despise them. This is probably because it happens at the behest of a desperate manager who has lost all trust and cohesion in his team. That and the fact the team are so much at each others’ throats they are no longer aware of how dysfunctional they’ve become.
Which all makes the Scottish ‘tour’ a bit bewildering. There is little to suggest any dysfunction in the squad although there may be a lack of cohesion with all the new faces. Perhaps it’s simply a traditional ‘summer tour’ for having a few bonding beers with the lads away from those distracting fillies and their pretty ankles.
But, it’s a long way to go to for a getting to know you exercise. It does get us away from the leg-breakers of Brackley and its surrounds but it’s difficult to see why we need to go to the expense of playing a couple of games 300 miles away.
Maybe it is beneficial to play teams outside the English pyramid – it’s much harder to calibrate our progress from destroying Morton and being tanked by Rangers. Where would they play in the English structure how much have we progressed as a result? Perhaps it’s just to make some good contacts (particularly at Rangers) and build our brand awareness on the Scottish west coast. It’s what all the modern clubs are doing nowadays.