The nature of football management was shown this week, as two League One managers lost their jobs.
Crawley Town, who sit 12th in League One, have parted company with manager Richie Barker after almost 16 months in charge of the club. After seven games without a win and just one goal scored in that spell, Barker finds himself out of a job – but maybe not for long. After League Two side Portsmouth sacked manager Guy Whittingham, Barker has become the frontrunner to take over on the South Coast. Meanwhile, Crawley striker Gary Alexander has been installed as the favourite to replace Barker having joined forces with Martin Hinshelwood to take interim charge of the club.
Former Crawley boss Sean O'Driscoll also finds himself unemployed, with his spell at Bristol City finally coming to an end. Just two wins from 18 games this season have cost the former Doncaster man his job, and the Robins will now head to Preston North End on Saturday with John Pemberton taking charge. Vice chairman Jon Lansdown stated the reason for O'Driscoll's departure in an email sent out to supporters.
"We have given the situation as much time as we could to improve but have become increasingly concerned about the club's league position and have decided that a change of head coach will give the club the best possible chance of improving this,"
"The league table does not lie. We are currently in the relegation zone and have been there for most of the season. This is not acceptable and the board feels that it needs to take action to try and rectify this; we need to move to ensure that results on the pitch keep up with progress off the pitch.”
Finally, the situation regarding Preston's mystery sending off seems to have been resolved, with Neil Kilkenny absolved of any wrongdoing, and striker Joe Garner instead punished. Garner, who went on to score twice in North End's 2-0 win at Port Vale when he shouldn't even have been on the pitch, will now serve a three match ban for a scuffle with Vale midfielder Anthony Griffith.
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