THE latest managerial upheaval in football is interesting in many ways and causes me something of a dilemma.
I like to think I’m on good terms with both John Sheridan and Joe Royle so it’s commiseration to one and congratulations to the other after the events at Oldham Athletic.
I saw Oldham twice in the early part of the season and they were terrific in seeing off MK Dons and Hereford United.
‘Shez’ admitted to me even then though that he was operating with a thin squad that would be stretched to the limits by any injuries.
Oldham have been in the top six of League I virtually all season, but they’ve hit their worst run (just one win in six and two in eleven) at the worst possible time.
However, you suspect John might have survived that but for an ill-advised bonding night for the players at the dogs.
It ended with him in a headlock, applied by Lee Hughes – not a man to tangle with – and two other players allegedly coming to blows.
A worst-of-the season 6-2 defeat at MK Dons sealed his fate.
If anyone can get the club back on track it’s Joe, my old sparring partner on FIVE, and one of the best people in whose company you could wish to be.
Returning to Ice Station Zebra, as he calls Boundary Park, is just the sort of challenge he's been seeking since leaving his last job at Ipswich.
Everyone wishes him well but the point I’m coming to is that players get managers the sack.
Even though Shez denies he’s lost the dressing room a team that was unbeaten in their first eight games of the season shouldn’t be losing so frequently now.
On the same theme Manchester City go to Aalborg for the second leg of their UEFA cup-tie tomorrow and I hope Robinho turns up.
The Brazilian dazzled at times at Eastlands last week, as he has done most of the season, but I’m told his performances away from Manchester have been either ‘abysmal’ or ‘pathetic’.
In other words bad enough to incur the wrath of his teammates and put pressure on Mark Hughes.
Whatever the mega-rich owners in Abu Dhabi say, they won’t tolerate too many sub-standard performances under the former Welsh manager.
They could also be sending out an emergency message for a former manager – Joe Royle!