And another door Coyle’s been shown
Owen Coyle has departed Blackburn Rovers today. That’s the fourth time he and his backroom staff have been told to leave a club in just over four years.
He was removed at Bolton Wanderers in October 2012 after manoeuvring them from a position ten years ahead of us. He then got the Wigan Athletic job but quickly fell out with players, fans and, more importantly, chairman Dave Whelan, who I can inform you once broke his leg in an FA Cup Final. He kicked off the 2013/14 season at the DW Stadium but he’d gone by the beginning of December.
From there he tried his hand at soccer, according to a song I’ve heard, but Houston had a problem and they shipped him out. Then, incredibly, he returned home and landed the Blackburn job in June of last year.
I don’t write this from a neutral position. I think everyone knows where I stand on the Coyle issue at Burnley. I haven’t forgiven him and that’s something I’ll never do, but I did think it was funny how badly he was doing down at Ewood.
When he got the job I was asked as to how I felt. My thoughts were that the club I dislike most had appointed the manager I despise most. It seemed perfect to me, keeping all the crap in one place, but even I didn’t think it was likely that he could so quickly turn them into relegation candidates.
I was at Padiham watching an FA Cup tie when they kicked off their season at home to Norwich. The news quickly started to come through from Ewood. It was 0-1 on 12 minutes, 0-2 five minutes later. With 25 minutes gone they trailed 3-0 and eventually lost 4-1.
Two away defeats followed at Wigan and Cardiff. They conceded five goals in those two games with Shane Duffy, then a Blackburn player, scoring three of them. Things really were looking up.
My one real concern was that Paul Lambert had left him a couple of decent coaches in Alan Irvine and Rob Kelly who might influence things. They did; they both got out just as quickly as they could to Norwich and Fleetwood respectively. That allowed the tried and trusted Sandy Stewart, John Henry and goalkeeping coach Phil Hughes to come in. At that point I was much more relaxed about things.
There were hiccups along the way and certainly Rafa Benitez and his Newcastle players need to take a long hard look at themselves. How on earth could they lose twice to Coyle’s team?
The good news is that since the second win against Newcastle, on 2nd January, they’ve only had one league win. They were beaten last time out in the league at Sheffield Wednesday and on Sunday lost in the FA Cup against Manchester United.
And now the Venky’s venom has struck. It’s mutual consent, of course, the polite way of sacking a manager these days. He’s gone and he’s taken Stewart, Henry and Hughes with him. It was a brief enough statement confirming it was to give the club the best possible chance of climbing to safety.
I did like the line from the statement which read: “The club would like to place on record its thanks to Owen and his staff for all their efforts this season,” and I can confirm that Up the Clarets would also like to place on record its thanks to Owen and his staff for all their efforts this season. It’s been great fun and I’m only disappointed that he hasn’t been able to stay to complete the job in taking them to League One.
Have I forgiven him because of his work at Ewood? Not on your life. Would I have forgiven him had he stayed and taken them down? As much as I would have loved it, the answer remains a resounding no, I could never forgive this man. I just hope he’s done enough at Ewood, I really do.Share this page :