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McDermott should be left to get on with the job
ONE of my other former clubs, Leeds United, have been in the news over the past week.
Manager Brian McDermott was relieved of his duties on Friday and then reinstated on Sunday in a roller-coaster weekend.
Never before in football have I heard of that happening, and it’s a shame it happened at my old club.
Brian, who was a member of Oxford United’s Division 2 title-winning squad in 1984-85, had to sit at home on Saturday and hear his team win a Yorkshire derby against Huddersfield, and then he returned to take training on Monday morning.
Apparently he was sacked by prospective owner, Italian businessman Massimo Cellino, who has 20 years experience as a football club owner.
If you have ever seen Brian give a post-match interview he speaks very calmly and is very laid back.
That’s his personality, but when you are around him for long enough you will discover he is also a funny guy.
I know Brian from my time at Reading, he was my reserve team manager along with his assistant, Nigel Gibbs.
Leeds is a massive club and has finally got some stability after years of financial uncertainty.
Situations like this one will only take the club in a backwards direction and not a forward one.
More than 31,000 Yorkshire folk made their voices heard at Elland Road on Saturday, and let the powers that be know that they do not like the way their club is being handled at the moment.
I hope the situation at Leeds gets sorted, and Brian is just left to do the job that he was hired to do.
THE January transfer window is now closed and when the cash registers were counted up, the amount clubs spent added up to a massive £130m.
That figure was more than January 2013 (£120m), but less than the record level seen in January 2011 (£225m).
The January window is not to everyone’s liking, and that opinion ranges from the terraces to the boardroom.
Should it be allowed? Is it good for the game? Does it only help those with money? Is it just a distraction?
All those questions and many more are what you hear throughout January.
I like the transfer window. I think it adds to the excitement of the season. Seeing which players are going where is great. As is seeing which new face is entering your club, and to see if those long-running transfer speculation stories were true.
There are always transfer rumours and whispers, which start from the papers or internet, but usually by some joker down the local pub.
I moved on the last day of the 2007 January window from Stoke City to Reading.
It wasn’t anything like the exciting last-minute transfers that you might see on Sky Sports News. I wasn’t doing my medical at 11pm at night and waiting for paperwork to get faxed minutes before the window closes.
No, in fact mine was quite the opposite. I think I did my medical in the morning, and then signed my contract around midday. There was no rushing around, no television cameras in evidence, in fact it didn’t make breaking news. Quite a boring move compared to the ones you see flashing on your TV screens on deadline day.
Either way the transfer went ahead and it was a good move for Stoke, Reading and myself.
Finally, I want to say that I got some stick last week because in my column, some felt that I was sitting on the fence with my opinion of the new manager of Oxford United.
I gave a description of the type of manager I felt should be in charge of the club next. It isn’t my job to name candidates for the job that fit that mould.
That would be unprofessional of me to just start throwing names about, Well, at least my column has them talking and difference of opinions is one of the beautiful things about football and sport.
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