Pundits slam Cardiff City boss Steve Morison over his treatment of young player
Former professional football players Danny Gabbidon and Iwan Roberts have hammered Cardiff City boss Steve Morison over his treatment of young Bluebird Isaak Davies.
Speaking on this week’s Elis James’ Feast of Football podcast, the pair took aim at the City manager for the way he publicly took the youngster to task over his performance away at Bournemouth.
Brought on as a second half sub in the 3-0 loss to the Cherries a week ago, Wales under-21 forward Davies then found himself substituted with 15 minutes to go.
When asked about subbing the sub, Morison didn’t hold back.
He said: ”He wasn’t good enough. It’s not sending a message, he just wasn’t good enough.
“If you come on, I bring you on to change a game, to help us and he was more a hindrance than he was a help.
“So we made the change. It’s not nice, it is not something I wanted to do, but I needed to try and do something to stem their flow.
“It’s harsh, people will say I only did it because he’s a young lad, but ultimately I did it because he wasn’t good enough in that moment.”
However, former Cardiff and Wales defender Gabbidon and former Wales international striker Iwan Roberts were dismayed at the way Morison had chosen to publicly criticise the youngster after a match which saw the game swing Bournmeouth’s way when Leandro Bacuna was sent off for a reckless challenge.
Roberts said he was “angry’ at Morison’s actions, which he added were “unwarranted”.
“I was looking at Isaak Davies’ performance, defensively for me, he didn’t do anything wrong,” said the former Norwich and Huddersfield forward. “He got back, he covered. He lost one ball in the centre circle because he was slightly too slow moving the ball and he got dispossessed. Honestly, that’s the only time he had the ball because it was backs against the walls stuff for Cardiff..
“I was shocked and surprised when I read his (Morison’s) comments and it’s not the first time. He did it up at Preston in November where he took Chanka Zimba off at half-time on his debut.
“These are young boys starting their careers you’re hanging out to dry with comments like that. But it did make me angry. It made me angry because I don’t think he did that badly in all honesty, because Cardiff were down to 10 men. To be dragged off after half an hour, it really did surprise me.
“The only two people that he’s really come out and criticised since he took over since that first game against Stoke, are the two young boys, not mentioned the defenders who were letting goals in left right and centre. Not mentioned the midfield that’s got no creativity in there whatsoever.”
Danny Gabbidon, who acts as a mentor for the Cardiff City youngster, was equally as dumbfounded, and questioned Steve Morison’s man management.
“Everybody knows that I mentor Isaak Davis,” he said. “Steve is a little bit more old school and he tends to treat everybody the same way. Man management is probably not one of his stronger points.
“But I think you’ve got to treat everybody differently, particularly young players. These young boys are learning the game and coming into a team that has been struggling for most of the season, it’s not the most perfect environment to breed young players
“You have to treat every player differently, particularly the young players because if you say or do the wrong thing you can dent confidence and lose them quickly.
“That’s how you lose players coming out with comments like that. So I thought it was disappointing and poor management, because for me, it felt a little bit like he was trying to wash his hands of the result and just maybe create some kind of excuse. And it’s easy to blame one of the young lads.
“Bacuna, obviously that was probably the biggest turning point in the game with a red card and I didn’t see too much said about that.
“If Isaak wasn’t good enough, you tell him in the dressing room and leave it at that and then come out in the press and defend the young lad and say well, okay, it was a tactical situation. I didn’t like what was happening. Bournemouth were getting too much of the ball and I had to change something. Even if he didn’t really think that and you told the lad different in the dressing room, I think to come out and dress him down in public, embarrass him and dent his confidence was a really strange thing to do.”
You can listen to the latest Elis James’ Feast of Football via BBC Sounds and other podcast providers.