Red card

The sudden sacking of a football manager days after the club’s board had given him a vote of confidence has become so commonplace that it doesn’t shock the outside world anymore.

So it went with Feyenoord’s dismissal yesterday of trainer Gertjan Verbeek plus his assistant coach and technical director.
The Rotterdam club has had a poor season so far and is currently languishing in lower half of the premier division, 22 points behind the league’s leader AZ of Alkmaar.
For a top club this position is unacceptable. Fans have been baying for Verbeek’s head for weeks, a demand the board ignored until Wednesday. The deciding factor was not the poor results or the fans’ disgruntlement, but the opinion of the players.
The team rebelled against Verbeek during a training session earlier this week. And then when the coach admitted that he no longer has the support of the squad, it was definitely time for a move. What is a shame, is that technical director Peter Bosz has also been booted out. Bosz had been responsible for helping to revitalise the Rotterdam club.
As for the players, they should be analysing their own massive role in the club’s decline rather than complaining about their coach’s disciplinarian approach.
And the board has to be realistic about what the club – which is short of funds to buy new quality players – can achieve. Feyenoord is certainly not the European top club it used to be.

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