It seems fitting that, thirteen months after I wrote why Parkinson was the wrong man for the job, I have the honour of writing about his departure.
It’s quite an easy thing to write about to be honest. We are almost exactly where we were then. We’ve a squad who should be producing much more, players with potential not showing that talent and, even worse, not making it on to the pitch at all. There are rumours that players aren’t happy; feel they don’t know their jobs and are being asked to play in styles that don’t suit their natural games.
Parkinson is the footballing equivalent of a dementor from Harry Potter. He sucks the life out of every performance we’ve witnessed. The inevitability of a decent position at half time turning into a dreadful defensive, nervous second half hopefully now leaves the club. And, to be honest, that is more than enough said about an awful thirteen months for the club. Let’s look forwards.
Normally, when we talk about who the club should get rid of during takeover rumours we end up with quite a list – chairman, academy director, first team manager, operations director, head of recruitment, director of football… Luckily, if the rumours are true and KLD is days away from arriving, he will need to get rid of none of those people – they’ve already gone.
The club feels like one massive blank piece of paper and the key is how it is filled in. I hope they don’t rush to appoint a manager but rather appoint as part of a complete overhaul. We need a director of football who can manage the whole process from under 8 to first team, an academy director and recruitment structure that supports the first team while bringing through youth, a style of play which all can agree on within the structure and only replace cogs within that structure with cogs that will work within that structure.
The immediate rumours are of Poyet making a return. It makes sense if Sartori is to increase his ownership percentage and rumours of Uruguayan clubs forming part of the KLD empire that a fellow Uruguayan might be involved. His knowledge of the region, of English football generally and the fact he took a team from League One to the top of the Championship all make him an obvious choice, but what if he doesn’t want it?
On the basis we’re looking for someone who can fit into a structure, is used to working in the lower leagues and bringing younger players through, I’d go for the Cowley brothers. Their success at Lincoln is well known and having achieved their target at Huddersfield, it seems an extraordinary decision to have sacked them. But perhaps Huddersfield’s loss is our gain?
The next appointments throughout the club could define us for the next ten years. They are fundamental decisions and the owners, old and new, need to look to create structures and relationships that will support the club’s long-term strategy.
The club needs to become something that fans are proud of, that players want to play for and where the fans are talking about players and performances on the pitch, not who said what in the boardroom. Let’s hope the next appointment is one of a number of appointments that takes the club forwards at all levels.