Ben Kensell updates supporters following the announcement that a new Director of Football will be appointed.
Here’s the full breakdown from his interview with Hibs TV.
The decision to bring in a Director of Football
We haven’t been good enough on the pitch and we know that. Just before the World Cup, we started a review based on previous transfer windows and as a result of that, we have restructured. I have 100% backing from the Board that we will be bringing in a Director of Football.
In my career to date, I’ve worked with Directors of Football, so I’m comfortable with this appointment and know what they can bring to the table. We now have to get the right person in place to take the Club forward.
It’s a big step, it feels like a big step and I’m delighted that we can do this. I’m really pleased with the support I’ve received from the Board, and Ron is a fantastic owner that wants to take the Club forward. I’m really pleased that we know what we’re working on, know what we have to do to get this right, and ultimately, I hope the fans feel as excited as we all do regarding this new appointment.
The Director of Football’s domain
Ultimately that person will lead from a footballing side from a strategy and structure perspective. They will review all areas of the footballing side, report to me as the CEO, and have visibility to the Board. Budgets will be held by the football club, and by myself, but they will be working with me, hand-in-hand, to take us forward.
The characteristics, skills & experience required by the Director of Football
We’re looking for an experienced head, someone to take charge and lead on a medium and long-term strategy. They will work with the Academy and all areas at HTC and will be the glue and the strategic lead in those areas. I would like them to have experience in Scottish football and an understanding of how we can be better in the areas we need to be.
What I’d expect from this individual is someone that comes with Scottish experience, that has football knowledge, contacts in the game and someone that’ll come in to make us better. We want someone that’ll put processes in place that ensure we correct some of the things we got wrong and can move us forward.
How the Director of Football and Manager work together
Ultimately with Director of Football should be there to support the Manager. The Director of Football should work hand-in-hand with Lee and a lot of the staff at HTC, whilst reviewing and improving. It’s about support at the end of the day and about football knowledge, nous and driving a football strategy that makes us better – that’s all we want at this club from the staff to the fans to the Board.
How the appointment affects recruitment
It means a lot (for recruitment), but it also means that it’s one of many areas that a Director of Football will need to work with and alongside. We want someone with a recruitment bias, they need to have experience in that area. I need someone with knowledge in the Scottish game. I want them to have worked with and for big clubs in senior positions, and I want that football expertise. There will be a review of all the processes and practices that we have in place, and Ian (Gordon), and the recruitment team, are no different. We need to improve in all aspects of our football strategy.
When will one be appointed?
Ultimately, I’d like to get the right candidate that brings all the qualities we’ve talked about, rather than get someone in quickly. I want the right person in-place, so that’ll take as long as it takes. This is a fantastic club, so I can’t imagine we will be short on quality applicants for the role. We will then get them in, as soon as possible, so they can hit the ground running and affect what we do on a day-to-day basis.
What happens now?
As the Manager has stated publicly, we have to trim our squad, so we’re focused on outs. If there’s someone we can bring in that is better than what we have, and brings real quality to the squad, then we will do that, but it has to be quality over quantity. In the immediate short-term I will continue to negotiate the terms of the ins and outs, and I’m sure it’ll be a busy window from that perspective.
The future of Ryan Porteous
Firstly, we have to say he’s been a fantastic servant for the Club, and we’ve had nothing but positive conversations throughout. Ryan is likely to leave this window. There are several options for him to choose from and we’re looking to strike the best possible deal for the Club, whilst also keeping an eye on the best possible deal for Ryan.