Feature / Football League / Huddersfield Town

Simon Grayson sacked: Why he had to go

Not even six years ago I was sat in a ICT lesson at high school when I noticed on the BBC website that fans favourite Peter Jackson had been sacked. Back then before the world of social media, other fans weren’t commenting on your team without knowing the full story and managers had less pressure as you didn’t have several thousand of your own fans tweeting “#JACKSONOUT”.

Instead that day I felt nothing but sympathy for Jackson, a hero amongst fans who had returned to a club who only had eight players on the books and a club who were financially close to ruin. Jackson took us up through the Division Three play-offs and nearly made the play-offs in our first season back in Division Two, the season after we did make the play-offs and narrowly lost to Barnsley, whilst managing to push Chelsea close in the FA Cup. This was all done on a shoe-string budget and you never heard other people except your own fans commenting on the sacking only a season after nearly taking us to the Championship.

You may think I have gone off on a wild tangent and I am completely ignoring the sacking of Simon Grayson, but I am instead complaining about social media and football. Yes it is a fantastic tool to talk to and meet fans from not only your own team but other clubs too. However, once again today I am seeing the dark side of Twitter.

PROMOTION: Grayson finally did what Lee Clark couldn't (pic: Huddersfield Examiner)

PROMOTION: Grayson finally did what Lee Clark couldn’t (pic: Huddersfield Examiner)

Nearly a year ago when Lee Clark was sacked we saw Twitter outrage as the whole of the world was bemused by Chairman Dean Hoyle’s decision. The likes of Stan Collymore, Wayne Rooney and Jack Wilshere declared that football had gone mad and fans from around the world threw insults at Huddersfield Town, Dean Hoyle and its fans, yet they didn’t know the full story.

Once again, all I see across Twitter is fans undoubtedly not “in the know” throwing insults at my football club. Things like That’s what you get for sacking Lee Clark”, “Huddersfield sack Simon Grayson. How has sacking Lee Clark worked out for you lads”, “Wonder how much Huddersfield are regretting sacking Clark”, “Huddersfield Town… The latest team to join the crazy sacking trend”.

Obviously I have left out the more hateful and un-publishable comments, but to see these comments from other fans and even journalists annoys me. Huddersfield Town were more than justified in Lee Clark’s sacking through promotion, albeit through the play-offs, yet other football fans and again journalists are questioning Dean Hoyle’s decision to sack Simon Grayson.

To those football fans out there who question any club sacking a manager, always find out what the fans think and look at the results. Whilst Nigel Adkins sacking was astonishing not only to the normal football fan but many Southampton fans, Huddersfield Town’s decision to sack Grayson is nothing more than an understandable decision.

GONE: Grayson has unsurprisingly been sacked (pic: htafc.com)

GONE: Grayson has unsurprisingly been sacked (pic: htafc.com)

Grayson has gone 12 games without a win with declining performances and resorting to the wholly unattractive long ball game, it is not a shock as a Huddersfield Town fan that he has been sacked.

Whilst some Town fans never really wanted Grayson as manager due to the Leeds United connection, I was quite pleased, especially with his track record of getting clubs out of League One. However, in his time here the football has never set alight the John Smith’s Stadium crowd. Of course Town managed to finally get into the Championship after the exhausting penalty shoot-out, but some of the football played before that was dire and defeats and draws were peppered throughout the second half of the season.

The start of this season surprised many fans with impressive victories against Blackpool, Sheffield Wednesday and Wolves, along with some attractive football, but in the last three months the good feeling around the club and the football has fizzled out.  A more telling fact than the current 12 games without a win is that Town haven’t come from behind to win a game this season. Along with that Grayson’s Huddersfield have only twice scored three or more goals since being promoted to the Championship and only four times in his tenure, the attractive football all fans strive to see was quite simply not there.

Game after game more Town fans turned against Grayson. The Christmas period was horrible for any fan to watch and ultimately the heavy defeats against Leicester and Watford were the tipping point for Chairman Dean Hoyle. In today’s statement made by the club one sentence told of why Grayson had gone and every fan agrees.

LOOKING: Dean Hoyle will now turn his attentions to finding a new manager (photo: hud.ac.uk)

LOOKING: Dean Hoyle will now turn his attentions to finding a new manager (photo: hud.ac.uk)

“Whilst we would all have hoped for even some modest signs of improvement to begin to emerge as the weeks have passed that has not been the case. This has made the position untenable.”

The last three months have been difficult for any Town fan, in fact I still find it hard to fathom how the same side the ripped Wolves to shreds in the first half of the fixture back in October has gone on this devastating run. Not only that, but the deterioration of the football from fast flowing moves to the dreaded hoofball all fans hate to pay and watch.

The question is who now comes in to try and stop the rot. Luckily this time Hoyle has made his decision when the transfer window is still open, so if Huddersfield Town do appoint a manager in the next week he may have time to try and improve a squad that already lacks in strength of depth.

Whoever the next man in charge of Huddersfield Town is, all you have to do is keep Town in this division. All we really want is to see attractive football, some passion and fight from the players and not to be rolled over like we have to Millwall, Leicester and Watford away. Is that really too much to ask?

And to the football fans and journalists on social media sites, namely Twitter. Please don’t criticise or insult Huddersfield Town or any other club for that matter when they sack their manager, without knowing the full details. I only hope what I’ve written here can help those who earlier commented on Grayson’s sacking understand why Hoyle has done so.

By Greg Marah@mrgregmarah

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6 thoughts on “Simon Grayson sacked: Why he had to go

  1. Excellent article, and very true, I am an armchair fan these days as I got a bit disillusioned last year hanging onto Clarke so long!, also Since Beckford arrived when he has occasonally played the team seems to be fashioned around him.
    I think a proper striker in the mould of Billy Sharp is needed, someone for Novak to play off, as he is not the player he used to be under Grayson.

  2. Came to this blog from BBC page and understand your frustrations re twitter an think it is a well thought and written article. I am a non Huddersfield fan who is a bit shocked at this decision as it seems premature considering you have had some very tough fixtures. and apart from the 2 drubbings it has not seemed that bad even if a win is long overdue. Think managers deserve more time to turn around slumps of form like this. That said it is your club and respect your views and opinions, especially as you have so eloquently explained them rather than just ranting at people as some people have on the BBC site. Thanks

  3. I have been saying exactly what this article says. The footballing world may stay confused and shocked by another Huddersfield sacking, yet it is fully understandable to those who are close. I don’t want to see managers sacked. I was even Lee Clark’s biggest fan and still watch out on Brum’s results closely, yet I could understand Hoyle’s decision last February. I hope his decision is justified once more, hopefully for a bit longer than 11 months though. Long Term stability is a must, albeit short term goals must also be reached in order for the long term to have a chance at all.

    Great article.

  4. Good article. I’m exiled in London at the moment and have watched the matches at Charlton, Milwall and sadly Watford. There has been a noticeable downturn in performances, culminating in another 4-0 defeat down here. With Leicester around the corner (who I’ve no doubt will end yet another cup run on Saturday) it’s time we had a change of plan. We shouldn’t forget that Grayson got us over the hump and into the championship but we have to stay there, if we dont financial woe will befall us again, and that run of performances was just desperately poor.

  5. I enjoyed reading that. I’m a Brighton fan but always look out for Town results. The amount of times last year when I had to explain to people the reality behind the Clark sacking. I think Grayson’s dismissal is vindicated too, I’d be sad if Town got relegated, I think it would really deflate the club, send you back 5 years etc etc.

  6. The thing with the Clark sacking was that the Town fan-base was split on it. You had some (ie most of DATM) saying it was about time and hurling insults at Clark saying he was a terrible manager etc despite losing just 3 times in 50-odd games. The there were others, like me, who thought it was both wrong and poorly timed. I didn’t see anything in Grayson last season which made me believe Lee Clark couldn’t have achieved the same thing. And I definitely didn’t see any of his teams roll over nearly as many times in 3 years as we have in the past 3 months. People have a right to their opinion, but the DATMers saw anyone who didn’t share their opinion as clueless whilst applauding those who did.

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