Oct/13

12

Opinion: Federer should re-hire coach Peter Lundgren

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Paul Annacone has been dropped by Roger Federer as his coach.

Clearly, Team Federer needs a change in chemistry.

Perhaps a good choice to replace Annacone would be former coach Peter Lundgren, who was able to spark the best out of Federer during his early years on the ATP World Tour.

Lundgren is a jovial, fun-loving sort of person who also has a proven track record of knowing how to maximize a player’s talent.

Lundgren and Federer had a special chemistry, as former ATP player, opponent and sometime practice partner Attila Savolt remarked about Roger for my book “Facing Federer.”

“He was very friendly at practice. With Lundgren, they would always be laughing, relaxed, always in a very good mood. It was a nice energy around them, even on the practice court. They don’t take it so serious. They were joking around, they were very relaxed, really enjoying time together. I really thought that they really fit together very well.”

“I think also Lundgren was an effect on him. He’s a very open guy, very relaxed, very nice guy too. I found that they really fit together. There was always a smile on both of their faces.”

Could Peter Lundgren be the missing piece of the puzzle? Could Peter Lundgren be the guy to kindle the Federer fire once again? Could Peter Lundgren be the guy to make tennis fun again for Roger?

Lundgren is likely available right now. He worked with Francesca Schiavone at the US Open this year but the Italian was bombed out in the first round by eventual champion Serena Williams.

34 comments

  • Dan Markowitz · October 12, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    Scoop,

    Lundgren is coaching Frankie Schiavone now. I don’t think he’s held too highly in the coaching ranks anymore.

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 12:01 am

    I have learned my lesson: hire the pierce family.

  • Roger Laver · October 13, 2013 at 2:53 am

    If it means Roger bringing back that weird hairdo, I would say no!

    Seriously though, I say hire Agassi/connors – they complement Roger’s brilliance and I am thinking they know a thing or 2 about playing late into their careers.

    I have a poll on my site asking the questions who Roger should hire.

    http://sportzcosmos.com/2013/10/13/roger-federer-bids-adieu-to-paul-annacone/

  • Mitch · October 13, 2013 at 9:58 am

    I wonder if Larry Stefanki is waiting by his phone.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 9:59 am

    Why wouldn’t Lundgren be held highly in the coaching ranks? Look at his body or work, Safin, Federer, Stan… You don’t think PL would resign from Schiavone to rejoin Fed? I do.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 10:00 am

    No way on Connors. And just can’t seen Agassi working as a coach for any player.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Larry Stefanki does not pick up his phone Mitch, I must’ve called him eight times to talk about Rios for my book and he never responded to phone calls or emails. )

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    Federer – Lundgren is over. That ship sailed.

    Federer – Stefanki won’t happen. That would be a step down.

    A big coach is not in the works.

    At this stage it’s about Federer and how he wants to end his career, seems he’d want to do it within his team – they brought in Annacone, and I’m sure they decided it was adios Annacone time. His game’s still there somewhere (it still works), slam semifinals aren’t too far fetched yet.

    I think Federer’s best shot is in bringing back the brat in him – the racquet breaking Federer who beat Nadal in the 2005 Miami tournament. This image of Federer as benevolent charming king has to stop. He just isn’t as respected on the court as he was, so he will have to unleash the brat.

  • Dan markowitz · October 13, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Fed is never bringing back Lundgren because that would mean he made a mistake firing him and Fed never makes mistakes. The only answer is Sampras now that Annacone’s out.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    It’s a tough situation for any coach. is there anybody out there who realistically believes Federer will improve or change his game or win another major or ven contend for one? I doubt it. The guys ahead of him are just too good, too strong and too young. Taking on the job of coaching Federer would be not unlike being named captain of the Titanic. There appears only one direction for Team Federer to go right now. Next year will be hard for Federer after every loss the media is going to be harping with the “when will you retire?” questions. Seles went through the same thing for a couple of years and she seemed annoyed by it.

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 2:44 pm

    Coaching Federer like the Titanic? No way. The ship is more worn, not a great ship that hit an iceberg.

    The big elephant in the room is Federer’s age. But other players have played good ball and turned it into slam semifinals at ages well beyond Federer (Agassi of course, McEnroe, Connors – even some lesser names). So Federer, being as or more talented than all of the above, should be able to get another semifinal.

    I don’t see Sampras as coach but maybe his wife wants him to get out of the house more. Touring with Federer isn’t a bad gig, but Sampras would need to turn his ego inside out and I don’t see it. Why would Sampras want Federer to further cement his status as GOAT unless Sampras doesn’t want Nadal to have it? It’s just a weird position to be in.

    Maybe Federer draws in Edberg or someone we haven’t heard from lately – high profile but not so high as to distract from team Federer. He always said he saw himself more in their line of play, so maybe he’ll put his $ where his belief is.

    Personally I think Federer is back to self-coaching. Luthi and Federer’s trainer get him back in the game for one more big year and Federer then says goodbye to the game. The game won’t be much fun for him if Federer slips out of the top 10. But I think we are in the finale of Federer’s career. I think he is thinking 18 slams, 19 max (so the goal is probably 19). He doesn’t want Nadal and Djokovic to think they can get there just yet.

    Probably wants Uncle Toni to think twice.

  • Roger Laver · October 13, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    Great discussion guys. Any feelers on what/who is going to coach Roger. In some sense Federer is beyond being coached by humans. He should hire Deep Blue , that computer that played chess with Kasparov as the coach.

    How about Cahill? Federer resepects Aussie ethos and aussie coaches. Last time – Cahill was averse to the travel. Any chance he might change his mind? surely there should be a dollar amount that can persuade even the toughest of them.

  • Mitch · October 13, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Cahill had a tryout for Federer a few years back. I don’t think he’s willing to go full-time and give up either the ESPN gig or his Adidas team role.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    Cahill may not believe Roger can do it. I remember after Roger lost that Aussie final to Nadal in five sets, on ESPN after the match Cahill’s words did not seem to indicate that he believed anymore in Roger’s chances. I believe Cahill and Federer did meet shortly after and spend some time together but they did not decide to join forces.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Maybe Dan Markowitz can send in his resume to Federer Headquarters. Dan has a coaching resume, he coached college tennis, and also almost got the job as Spadea’s coach if my memory is correct. Somewhat thin credentials but hey, Dan’s voice (ask Safin or Fish) would surely be better than silence with Annacone now gone. How about Spadea and Markowitz as a tandem along with Severin Luthi? : )

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Roger Laver’s suggestion of Cahill would be a great pick

    Cahill is respectful like Annacone, seems to care about his reputation but not about his status – makes him serious but lower profile. That’s a perfect match for team Federer.

    But it’s not likely. Maybe once you do TV announcing you stop top-level coaching. Conflicting interests put the tv analysts in weird spot of calling matches when they should be coaching (incidentally, Jon Wertheim’s main criticism of Pat McEnroe, who he thinks has to dump tv for full time USTA work).

    To me Federer’s going back in house. He knows more about the game than anyone anyways.

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    I bet Spadea would be game, but Dan can’t do it because of the T-P duties. That would be like Gilbert abandoning TV.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 13, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    Fed did ask me, but you’re right, Andrew, I said my T-P duties were way too important and lucrative to just toss away for what, as Scoop said, like being the captain of the Titanic.

    Also, Andrew, 18 or 19 slams, are you kidding? If Fed gets slam #18 it would be one for the ages! You know when Sampras won the Open the last time 02, it wasn’t a cake draw. He had to beat Rusedski, then #3 Haas, then Roddick. He got a gimme in the semis with Schalken, but then he beat the resurgent Agassi in finals. He had to beat two guys he’d lost to earlier in the year (Haas and Roddick).

    Ped would probably have to go through at least 2 of these guys: Djoko, Nadal, Murray, Delpo and Tsonga. He can’t do that anymore, not even in a regular tournament. Geez, the last two slams he’s gone down to Stakhovsky and Robredo.

  • Bryan · October 13, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    I have no idea which coach would be the best fit to turn around Roger’s game but it’s obv he needed a change.

    Peter Lundgren may have had a jovial approach and kept Roger relaxed but that doesn’t mean it would work on a second go around. It’s easy to be at ease when you’re in your physical prime and beating everyone.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    If Fed gets number eighteen Dan told me he’s officially changing his name to Roger Markowitz. )

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Federer and number 18 is the mission make no doubt about it! Otherwise why cut out Annacone? This is the final stage for Federer’s career and it is clear he wants to go out feared rather than loved. It is somewhat quixotic – but Federer is arguably better than other players like Sampras who went out memorably . I would think he still believes he has Murray’s number , to some extent if he catches a break like Sampras with Schalken he could square off against Djokovic and put it all out there and let the chips fall where they may.

    That is assuming a lot by why make this move ? I think it means Federer saw the possibility of not qualifying for wtf as worse than he expected and this whole year showed him he has been well off the mark. Seeing that is reality.

    Given that Dan is declining team Federer officially there is only one other option : Marcelo Rios. Now THAT would throw the rest of the tennis world for a loop. The Nadal squad would never know what hit them.

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 10:05 pm

    ( I.e. Rios would prove you CAN teach how to play like him just NP one asked him).

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 10:07 pm

    For my Federer book Richard Williams talked about Federer and interestingly he said Federer could win more majors if he was “rougher and tougher.” Maybe Richard Williams can send in his resume to Federer Headquarters.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 13, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    I think it mostly comes down to Fed being a guy who watches his coin and he doesn’t want to pay an Annacone big bucks if the results aren’t there.

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 13, 2013 at 10:54 pm

    It’s hard to imagine Annacone saying much that could have helped Federer. Federer knows how to play tennis a lot better than Annacone ever did. It sure looked a lot like Annacone was riding Fed’s coattails for those three years. Who out there is qualified to coach Roger? Does anyone believe Fed can still get the upperhand on Murray, Rafa and Djokovic at a major?

  • Andrew Miller · October 13, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    I believe almost anything can happen at a major. Some players will never get a slam. But if you know how to win them you have a shot.

    Here is my version of Annacone coaching Federer .

    ” so what is the plan Paul ? ”

    ” same as last time . just play your game. ”

    ” anything else ?”

    ” yes , remember you have 17 slams he doesn’t and he knows it . ”

    ” anything I should try to do ?”

    ” just do it . ”

    ” thanks Paul. ”

    ” sure thing Rog. You the man ! “

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 14, 2013 at 8:11 am

    That’s funny Andrew. And probably the truth )

  • Roger Laver · October 14, 2013 at 11:09 am

    LOL @ Andrew Miller’s Paul Annacone-RF conversation.

    I believer Roger’s got #18 in him. If for nothing, at least for the fact that I predicted that number in 2003! [I am sure that has definitely made a believer out of all you Fed-doubters!]

    I had upgraded that number to 20, after that 2009 FO win, but I have [wisely, some might say] stopped talking about it :D

  • Dan Markowitz · October 14, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Please, No. 17 was outrageous. If Fed makes another slam semis I’d be shocked.

  • rogvolly · October 15, 2013 at 11:39 am

    This could be the stupidiest article/ dissucussion i have ever seen . First off the problem is entirely mental not a god damn thing to do with age . Since the wimby loss and raquet change his confidence is abosolutely zapped he should have never panicked , but now he is going to get back into to the proper frame of of mind and i assure all of you it makes little differnce who is coaching. Much better results are in the very near future

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 15, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Rogvollystradamus hath spoken. I agree Rogvolly, Fed is one of those players like Tilden Kramer Gonzalez who does not need a coach. And you can never count out a great champion like Federer from refinding that key to winning a major one more time. Sampras did it at the end. So can Federer. I think Federer is more likely to do it than Sampras was because Federer is the overall better player than Sampras, however he has the more formidable obstacles in his path. Thanks for your comment Rogvolly and welcome to the site.

  • Andrew Miller · October 16, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    Father time got Lendl. Becker. Agassi. Sampras. JORDAN! No one is immune.

    I think Federer has one, two more big slam runs in him, probably 50/50 shot on whether they result in a slam win. And he wouldn’t fire Annacone if he didn’t think so.

  • gustarhymes · October 20, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Stefanki?

  • Author comment by Scoop Malinowski · October 20, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    Stefanki has dropped off the face of the tennis world. Dan and I should try to do an interview with him, if he would be interested in coaching Federer. We have his contact info.

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