Friday 19 January 2018

Hard to replace big Sam - Coyle

Former Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce. Photo: Getty Images
Former Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce. Photo: Getty Images

Bolton boss Owen Coyle believes Blackburn will have to "go some" to recruit a better manager than Sam Allardyce.

Allardyce was surprisingly dismissed as Rovers boss on Monday with his team 13th in the Barclays Premier League, with club owners Venky's stating he did not fit in with their "long-term vision".

But Coyle, whose side beat Blackburn 2-1 on Sunday in what turned out to be Allardyce's final match in charge, was unimpressed.

He said today: "Sam Allardyce has done a fantastic job at Blackburn Rovers - as he has done everywhere else - because he is an outstanding manager, and shocked is probably an understatement.

"The way it was done, we know in football that that happens, but it doesn't make it any easier.

"They are going to have to go some, I would suggest, to get a better replacement than what they had in Sam Allardyce.

"I think Blackburn have lost an outstanding manager and, in my opinion, it is going to be very difficult to replace somebody of that stature."

Stoke boss Tony Pulis was also baffled by Allardyce's departure.

"It happened with Chris Hughton at Newcastle the week before," he said.

"There are situations that occur now at clubs which are very disappointing.

"Chris left after doing exceptionally well with Newcastle, and Sam has done a fantastic job at Blackburn and yet has got the sack, and that is really, really disappointing.

"Goodness knows what is going on out there.

"We're in an industry where change is made on a regular basis, but usually when you're not doing so well, for poor performances.

"Those two managers have done exceptionally well with their clubs, yet have still lost their jobs.

"I think a lot of clubs could look at the way (chairman) Peter Coates handles and runs this club and take a leaf out of his book."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger - who has clashed with Allardyce in the past - was surprised by the decision to dismiss the former Bolton manager.

"It came as a surprise to me because I think he had done a good job there," Wenger said.

"He stabilised the club last season and Blackburn are in a strong position this year.

"I think they played quite well Blackburn this season."

Press Association

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