And they say a week is a long time in politics.

A manager, the public release of games ahead and the return of a certain sports manufacturer and all of a sudden the proverbial clouds disperse.

It does seem somewhat fitting that such events coincided with a more than generous Gulf Stream allowing us to bask in warmer climes, naturally interrupted with the occasional grievance that 'It's actually too hot'. 

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Regis Le Bris officially begins his tenure this week. He has much to contend with - assessing players, alterations to coaching staff, examining the ethos and, of course, the expectations of the broad support. 

His arrival has provoked understandable debate, the glass half full elements endeavour to showcase his first full season as Lorient manager as an indication of things to come.

Countering, are those who seek to illuminate the shortcomings that were contributory to a side going from a laudable finish in the top ten of the French elite to a side no longer facing such prestigious company for at least another season. 

Occupying the middle ground is Le Bris' sizeable time and experience of working with younger players far from the maelstrom of first team management. 

The primary, or polarising, arguments are valid, both factual in nature yet without greater understanding of the French game at a domestic level it is challenging to offer a view that is more definitive around strengths and weaknesses. 

In his favour is arriving in the aftermath of adversity. Similarly, a summer appointment tends to reinforce the notion of new beginnings, that things will be different and for the better.

All this in complete contrast to Michael Beale touching down in a December that was dreary in more ways than one, with a reasonable section of supporters steadfastly loyal to the recently departed Toby Mowbray and both uninspired and unconvinced by Beale and new age rhetoric. 


Coming weeks will offer an up close and personal take on Le Bris. Pre-season visits to non-league neighbours provides fans with their first familiarity and whilst the games don't have much more than fitness and fine tuning at stake it does allow for first impressions. 

When things become more serious it is Cardiff that lie in wait. The hope will be for a performance and outcome reminiscent of the most recent visit to South Wales. 

The following week will see Danny Rohl on Wearside. The hope on this occasion that it bears no resemblance to just a short time ago when Sheffield Wednesday put everyone out of a collective Mackem misery as the season concluded in May. 

Le Bris’ written contract may start in July. By the end of August we will know more about the verbal conditions - whether he will be afforded financial wherewithal to compete with those that many a bookmaker senses will be likely to return to the promised land. 

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And, of course, the club has started the summer by scoring the proverbial open goal.

There may well be more recognisable brands but hummel has a special place in the hearts and minds of many a supporter, notably those of a certain vintage, and the release of the home strip allows an official club strip to mingle with the retro versions that have been very popular for some time. 

Will it sell well? To remain in the Danish theme.... probably.