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I bucked the trend at Accrington Stanley says John Coleman

Former Stanley manager John Coleman admitted he bucked the trend at Accrington with his 13 years in the hotseat.

John Coleman

Former Stanley manager John Coleman admitted he bucked the trend at Accrington with his 13 years in the hotseat.

Chairman Eric Whalley and Ilyas Khan kept faith with the manager through plenty more good times than bad times. But sadly for the 50-year-old he experienced the other side of the coin on Monday when Rochdale chairman Chris Dunphy sacked Coleman after just a year in charge at Spotland, following a run of eight defeats in 10 League Two games.

“You know it’s an occupational hazard if you don’t get the results,” said Coleman, with former Dale boss Keith Hill replacing him at the Spotland helm.

“At Accrington, I bucked the general trend as I managed there for 13 years but I think the average time for a manager nowadays is 11 months and that’s how long I lasted at Rochdale.”

Coleman, who was on a one-year rolling contract at Spotland, brought in ex-Reds Peter Cavanagh, Phil Edwards, Kevin McIntyre, Terry Gornell and Bobby Grant, as well as Ray Putterill and Ian Craney – who were both released earlier this month.

Putterill has gone to Hyde while Craney has been linked with League Two Aldershot.

Striker Gornell has signed a short-term contract until the end of the season at Rochdale after he came from Shrewsbury for an undisclosed fee.

But Coleman wasn’t given the time to turn it around – as he didn’t even hit his one-year anniversary on Thursday – although he felt he was getting there.

“We should have won more games that we did but we know that eight defeats in 10 games always leaves you vulnerable,” he said.

“The frustrating thing is we were close to winning a couple of those games and, had we done, we would have been pushing for second or third and it is tight margins.

“I knew what we needed. The attack was fine and we would always score goals but I knew the defence was too young and I was trying to get an experienced defender in this month.

“But the one I earmarked went somewhere else for more money and you can’t do a lot about that.”

Coleman upped his playing budget in his switch to Spotland but still felt he was trailing behind the Bradfords and Chesterfields – which only serves to highlight what a good job Accrington do in at least preserving their league status every year.

He said: “I think, on the budget we had, we were in a higher position than we should have been but playing-wise we should have been higher.

“I have high expectations of myself and no one is more disappointed than myself with the way it has worked out.

“I expect to be challenging for promotion and don’t forget, I had the lowest budget in the league at Accrington, but I took them into the top six and that’s what I expect.

“I put myself under a lot of pressure so any outside pressure didn’t matter to me but, at the end of the day, the board has the right to make their decision and they have.”

Coleman admitted he was ‘shocked’ by the decision and still debating what the future holds for the former schoolteacher.

 
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