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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Notts a Clue

So Ian McParland has been sacked by Notts County. I'm actually very surprised by this decision. Not because it is a shock that he has been let go so early in the season.

No, I'm shocked because I thought the new owners of Britain's oldest Football League club, Munto Finance, would sack the unfortunate soul as soon as the club dropped points.

Maybe they wanted to prove a point and didn't want to be seen a merciless idiots who don't know the first thing about running a football club?

Maybe they flipped a coin and decided his time was up? Or maybe they just got bored with his face?

Whatever the reasoning was, I don't think anyone is surprised by the decision.

McParland found himself between a rock and a hard place when the Middle East Midlands revolution took place. He was still deemed to be the manager of the club but he had the mighty Sven-Goran Eriksson overseeing everything he did.

Although McParland did try to convince himself that every decision was his own, it was clear to see that he was operating within the boundaries that had been established by his superiors.

The difficulty didn't end there though. The gaffer found himself in a lose-lose situation.

If Notts County had a good season and steam-rollered the league - which a lot of so-called "pundits" expected them to do - then the success would rest on the perfectly groomed head of Sven.

And if the club struggled to achieve what was expected of them then the blame would lay at the feet of Ian McParland.

Now, admittedly, Notts County have had an abysmal start to the season. 21 points from 12 games is a shocking return for a club who have spent trillions of pounds on players.

What's that? They're fifth and only four points off the top? And they haven't spelt trillions of pounds on players? So why has he been sacked?

Now I can understand that many people would expect the Magpies to finish top this year, and they may still do so, but you have to realise that this is a club who have enjoyed mid-table obscurity for the past few seasons and have never really looked like mounting a serious promtion push.

McParland (left) was always uncomfortable with the new County regime

The money spent and the players brought in have turned the club into promotion candidates, but that's it. They haven't turned into League Two's greatest team overnight and they were never going to walk away with the league.

The ridiculous media coverage has everyone believing that they are equal to Chelsea and Manchester City and should win every game from now until they get promoted to the Premier League.

So who are they going to bring in to take charge of the club? Sven has already said that he will remain in his position as Overlord of All Things Football and will not become the manager.

This means that Munto Finance are going to have to do a bit of research and find someone who is suitable for the role. Someone who has a good track record and has knowledge of the lower leagues.

The papers seem to have put this together and come up with the name of David Platt.... wait, that can't be right can it? This is the same David Platt who almost destroyed Notts County's city rivals Nottingham Forest?

At the beginning of the season, I said that this Middle East Midlands revolution would eventually end in tears.

I didn't know how long it would be before Magpies fans would be reaching for the Kleenex but if things continue to progress at the current rate, then I'd recommend sending one of their company representatives to the city in the next few months.

McParland was never a popular figure with the Munto Finance crew but he was doing a decent job and would have probably got the club promoted.

Now the board need to find a new manager and I for one am fearful that they will look for a big name who has no clue how to manage in a division such as League Two.


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