Often Partisan

Another month of speculation

Birmingham City were plunged into more speculation last night with the news that Derby head coach Paul Clement has been sacked. Gary Rowett has been touted by many Derby fans as social media as their ideal choice for the manager’s job in the immediate aftermath .

Rowett, who moved from Derby County to Birmingham City as a player, is known to still live in the Derby area and enjoy a close connection to the club. With Blues having risen from relegation candidates to playoff hopefuls during Rowett’s tenure it’s unsurprising that he’s already been linked with the job even though Darren Wassall (another former Blues player) has been told it’s his job until the end of the season.

I made a conscious decision last night on hearing the news (and consequently being bombarded with messages from fans asking me how likely it was that Rowett would go) that this will be the first and only post I will write about this speculation. This isn’t because I think the media and the internet talking about Rowett going has any effect on whether he will go or not – but more because I don’t want a month or more of “will he, won’t he”.

I saw some people online saying Rowett should make an unequivocal statement saying that he won’t be going to Derby (something he didn’t do about the Fulham job) but I think that would mean nothing. As a commenter on here eloquently quipped last night, there are only two things permanent about Blues – the fans and the main stand.

It’s inevitable Rowett will leave us sooner or later – especially if he continues to do such a great job – and I think rather than crapping ourselves every time he’s linked somewhere else we have to just get on with supporting the club. Football has shown that there is an inevitability that if a club does better than it should do, it will get predators circling to pick off the better players and ensure that another club can’t break a well-established hierarchy. There is no such thing as loyalty in football – whatever anyone says football is a short career which can be ended by one bad injury and as such players (and managers) have the right to maximise their playing earnings.

What I would say though is this is why I’m so interested in the here and now – why I think we must make the push for the playoffs this year. The last time Blues had such a great chance was under Hughton; we failed and he was gone. What followed was a few years of gradually diminishing returns in placing and I fear that is what could follow this year too. I want Rowett to stay and to take us to the promised land of the Premier League – I fear that should we not do it this year he will be snapped up by someone else with much more money and there won’t be much we can do about it. C’est la vie.

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73 Responses to “Another month of speculation”

  • kazakblue says:

    I believe that GR will stay at the Blues, and the favourite to take the Derby position will be Brendan Rogers, hope so anyway, they will end up below us, KRO.

  • Lichblue says:

    Spot on Dan. We can’t do anything about the speculation. We can’t do anything about Rowett choosing to leave. Hopefully he stays and sneaks us into the play offs and we are the outsiders that go up. Either way i’ll still be there next season along with the main stand. KRO.

  • Luke says:

    Betfair is the only bookie that has a market on this one so far. Wassall has marginally shorter odds than Rowett. Looking down the list, there’s no Rogers, or Moyes for that matter.

  • Mortonsblue says:

    Do you think Derby hierarchy will admire Rowetts brand of football? The main reason they sacked Clements was that he had not moved the football style forward enough not on his record, he only lost 5 games.

  • Paul says:

    I firmly believe GR will stay.at the Blues at least until the end of this season

  • StaffsBlue says:

    The way things are these days, I wouldn’t be surprised if Rowett went, but I would be disappointed that he buggered off before finishing the job he started. That would put us back to square one and all the doom and gloom would start all over again. Heaven forbid.

    But, if the worst comes to the worst, we move on and find another manager. The club will always be bigger than one individual.

  • edd77 says:

    Be lovely to think Rowett would stop here for the nxt 5 or 10 years but the truth is he’s an ambitious young manager and with our budget and uncertainty about ownership etc there will come a point when he feels he’s taken us as far as he can ,I’m sure Burton Albion fans wanted him to stay at their club ,it’s the nature of the beast I’m afraid ,on the bright side the work he did at Burton left them in a great position and made the job easier for the managers that followed him KRO

  • Mickey07 says:

    No takeover = no rowett, baggies or Derby for him by the summer also if Wassall isn’t doing the business from the off then I can see them coming in for rowett earlier.

  • Mitchell says:

    GR is a good manager but not a great one. In our eyes he is a saviour purely on turning us around from fodder to a respected play off chasing club. Games at home this season where we should have won and therefore catapulted us into a great position have not materialised. Important games that would have changed our fortunes also. Derby supporters want a tactical experienced manager who can get them over the line.GR would be a real gamble.If and it is probably unfair of me to say that had we had got points at home against dire opposition and particularly last Saturday where a managers know how was required-then I would probably rank GR much higher.

    • atko says:

      Think you’re being more than a little unfair there. The manager isn’t responsible for players performances on the pitch. Players not sticking to a game plan and a lack of concentration from the first whistle to the last is what costs us just like it did last Saturday. Sure bringing Fab on was a bad move when Davis was a better option but it was a gamble that backfired. GR doesn’t make too many mistakes like that thankfully. The only thing that will drive GR out of Stans is fans who won’t leave him alone to do the job he is paid to do and stop bloody moaning. Blues fans simply will NEVER learn when it comes to personnel. Whether its boards or managers Blues fans often manage to talk their way in to having to replace them.

    • Hillfield Blues says:

      You are completely out of touch with reality I’m afraid.
      Not a great manager and tactically unaware??

      • atko says:

        He’s a bloody good manager with what he has got to work with and if you can’t see that then you should be the other side of the city! He’s got predominantly a bunch of freebies fighting for a playoff place whilst clubs who have plenty more money than us are no better off. Management is easy when you have plenty of money to spend. Good managers can do it from any financial position!!!

    • Shirley Blue says:

      Yes we have lost a few games at home we should have won but we have won games we expected to lose eg Derby- that’s just the way football is sometimes – there is another team trying their best to win a game on the pitch as well. He hasn’t been a manager long enough to call him a great manager but based on what he has done for us over 16 months I don’t think he deserves what you said there. Sheffield Wednesday were a good side but we missed chances to go two up – is that the managers fault? Their equalizer was top class in terms of the build up and finish and nobody’s fault and their winner should have been disallowed. If he goes Derby or anyone else will be getting a very good manager and it will be our loss. I just don’t think he will.

  • Gary is his own man and realises that the only way he is going to be successful is if he does it HIS WAY ,I don’t think he would get that at Derby , well he would for a few games until he lost a few games , Gary knows that at this time in his career if he gets shot down it could take him a long time to get back up , and if he got the sack at Derby with his son being a supporter it would hurt for ever, , and his son could be the whipping stick with his friends every time Derby lose a few , Its a close call but I think Gary will stay to make this team his own .

  • Martin Wright says:

    Love the comment about the only permanent things at BCFC, still thats why we support them ,never a dull moment KRO !

  • John says:

    More gloom and doom, why dont you all wait and see instead of expecting the worse? What will be, will be,

  • Ken says:

    Like a lot of Managers, GR has publicly said that he relishes having a relatively free hand at Blues and he would not be interested in a “Head Coach” role reporting to a Director of Football…which is how DCFC operate. You would think that financially, the contract that he has just signed puts him on a par with the better performing Championship managers. Apart from the fact that he lives in the Derby area and his eldest son is a season ticket holder at DCFC there’s no reason to think he will go there. But, of course, he will go some day, sure as eggs is eggs. Virtually every manager Blues have had has been hailed at the outset as some sort of messiah….normally it’s quite the opposite when they go! So really it’s best not to get too agitated over all this…and would he really want to go to a place where they sack a head coach after 8 months with the team in the play-offs….

  • southcoastblue says:

    My personal loyalty is to my family, friends with ’employer’ quite a long way down the list. GR’s a shrewd guy – he’ll probably look closer at Derby than at most other jobs because of the local connection (won’t have to move house, schools etc) if it looks good enough he’ll go for it. If there are too many negatives then he’ll wait for something better. Any new job’s got to look significantly better than Blues to be worth the upheaval………………so we’re probably safe about Rotherham.

  • Retroblue 73 says:

    Much as I like Rowett and am a pretty optimistic Bluenose I think that if Derby do come calling then he will be off…unlike the QPR & Fulham roles there is a far bigger pull with Derby. He played for them, lives in the area, Derby have far more financial power than us at present and attract far bigger crowds consistently. I think his family are Derby fans too? The other scenario is that Wassall has it till the end of the season then Rowett takes over in the summer. Hope I am wrong but…

  • Farmerfizz says:

    What a fickle lot we are. When we lose at home to Rotherham he’s a mug. When we beat Derby away Rowett is God. I don’t think he is either of those he’s just a good young manager doing an exceptional job under equally exceptional circumstances. At 55 years of age I’ve seen it all down the Blues and I for one won’t be losing any sleep over our managers future. He’ll do what everyone of us would do and that’s do what’s right for him (and family) and his back room team. All I know is if he left now he’d leave us in a ridiculously better position than when he joined and that is all you can ask of any manager.

  • The word has it that Clement was sacked for not doing it the Derby way , old big head Brian Clough was accused of doing the same , by the board that is ,,,proof of the pudding Gary , proof of the pudding …which goes to prove that he who looks through extremely expensive sun glasses sees things in a different light from everybody else….KRO

  • Bluenosesol says:

    I fear that Blues home performances this season will be what restricts us to top 10 rather than the play offs, though I would add that the Play Offs are not an impossibility, just improbable. If GR gets us into a top 10 finish again he would have done a grand job with available resources. Should GR go to Derby a top 10 outside the play offs would be deemed a massive failure. Someone has said GR is not a great manager. I would qualify that by saying that GR is an apprentice, he could well become a great manager. The Derby job could be the move that totally undermines his growth potential. He is a very intelligent guy. He will stay with us and become a great manager! KRO!!

  • ChrisG says:

    If Derby had any sense they would go for Nigel Pearson, if Rowett left us then WE should go for him. I never understood why the vile didn’t go for him considering their current predicament & what he did at Leicester

  • Dave Mann says:

    I agree . KRO

  • DaveP says:

    If GR does go, and I personally think he’ll lead us to promotion next season rather than this, then we could do worse than get Garry Monk in. He did a great job at Swansea and I reckon he’d do a bang up job for us.

  • AdamTrueBlue says:

    I do not understand some of the statements here? GR has publicly said he is happy at Blues, he is getting the support he needs and has a budget to work with, he also said that the goings on in HK are having no effect on him but quite the opposite, it is giving him freedom to do it his way, he has signed a new contract! WHY has this subject risen its ugly head again it is just propoganda that does not deserve our time or effort. END OF. Kro

  • Bluejohn says:

    Gary Rowett has previously stated that when he goes home to Derby there are no supporters ‘in his face’. He also stated that it is one of the reasons that the Blues job is so appealing, and the Derby job would make life ‘uncomfortable’. GR is not going to Derby! I was at the game on Saturday and I thought Sheff Wed’s forwards were streets ahead of ours in technique and the ability to create a goal out of nothing. We do not possess a natural goal scorer and if we fail to make the playoffs (heaven forbid!) then that will be a major factor. Hurry back Cotterrill!!!

  • Gerard says:

    The end of the season will determine everything- at the moment you are all crystal ball gazing, if we get promoted, if Carson Yeung wins his case ( that is worse than GR leaving ) if E Y sort out the financial side, if we get a proper take -over with real investment and genuine owners who care, plus what influence will Panos have in future ? all depends on the on such much uncertainty, once the picture becomes clearer then GR will decide, if the picture is still unclear in 4-5 months then I suspect for his own future sake he will move on, as he is highly intelligent ambitious and does not suffer fools, it maybe Derby I doubt it ? In the meantime why go to Derby now they have a head coach-he will not report too, an interfering board, also he cannot sign players to improve them except for the loan system, he will stay at BCFC for the short term as we are much mOre stable than Derby presently, however beyond that look into your crystal ball.

  • Bluey says:

    He hasn`t gone yet and fans are looking at replacements.Relax and see how it pans out. I very much doubt he`ll be gone before the end of this season at the earliest.

    • Dave Mann says:

      I don’t think he will leave before the end of the season Bluey but it’s the summer time that worries me and I think our league situation might have a bearing on it but as you say let’s wait and see . KRO

  • John says:

    Did Gary have a release clause in his new contract I wonder? … I also think our noisy neighbours will be looking for a new manager come the summer

    • almajir says:

      His release clause will be the value of his contract – as I understand it’s one year rolling. Pay that up and presto…

      • Bluey says:

        If he decides he wants to go there`s nowt we can do and i,for one,wouldn`t blame him. We`d have more chance of him staying with the ownership sorted and money in the coffers to improve the squad.This is why it`s so frustrating because if GR had a few million to spend i`m sure we`d have a heck of a chance of promotion.But,as usual, at our club the off-field issues are holding us back. There seems no forward momentum on the takeover and i despair of it happening any time soon.

  • Tony says:

    Its inevitable that Rowett will leave us for Derby at the end of the season and who can blame him? they have a lot more money than us and far better players, he has more chance of promotion there than with us.
    All this crap going in in HK has been going on for years with no sign of an end to it, he has done a great job in building a spirit and organizing the team, he has however made mistakes, elementary ones at that.
    Fabbrini was never a priority as far as I was concerned we needed a goal scorer desperately, not a luxury playmaker like Fab who should never have played in those conditions we had on Saturday he was not suited to it. Rowetts failure to bring Davis on was a mistake.
    For all the running Donaldson and Vaughan do neither are natural scorers Don needs four chances and Vaughan six to score maybe eight.
    If he goes I will be sorry but not heartbroken he is not the long term answer, there have been quite a few occasions this season where we have won if the opposition had taken half the chances we would have been soundly beaten. We rarely seem to control a game completely and fly by the seat of our pants too often for my liking, Sheffield Wed had quality players and it showed.
    Remembering the disastrous charlatan that was Clark and his comic sidekicks who just milked the club dry Iam eternally grateful to Rowett but if he wants to leave then so be it.

  • Gerard says:

    To add to Johns comments the crap across the city will certainly have GR on their radar- as far as arrogance and all the other bad virtues in life they are the best believe me, I actually said at the Ipswich match to my friends and people I have sat by for years when Remi Garde started sounding off about being misinformed by the Vile hierarchy – that GR was an obvious target for them the Vile know no bounds of decency believe me.

  • Texas Pete says:

    There is something wrong at a club when the manager is fired for maintaining a play off position during the season and having high probabability of being there in May. Prospective managers deserve compensation for taking on a job like that.

  • Once again the same old episodes of Dallas will be played out with the news that Derby have sacked their manager , once again a managers contract as been ripped up as if he was only a temp , what the hell do the football league get paid for , as they have created a soap out of the beautiful game, The fit and proper test isn’t worth a light ,the leagues OK of BIH was as much good as the £2 1/4 million that was missing , football managers are treated like temps ,football players contracts are like confetti at a paupers wedding , supporters spend their hard earned cash at the turnstiles and those that watch the match on the tv all goes to to keeping clubs in business are treated like dirt and shouldn’t have a say young players are whisked away on the cheap , I think it is time for change in football .

  • There is a league managers association for what it’s worth .

  • Gerard says:

    Texas Pete- I am good at my job but if they want rid maximum I would get is 3 months pay at the age of 65- football managers getting sacked in the 2 top leagues compensation my backside- how much do they walk away with minimum 1 years salary anything from say 250, 000K to 5 million plus if your name is Jose- spare me the tears , they know exactly what they are letting themselves in for at the beginning and if the fail- indeed if they fail they are guaranteed a pay off of substance – some never having to work again as they are financially secure by virtue of failing – yes there is a stigma also another mug waiting to employ them again just around the corner granted there are few exceptions now like our last manager LC- but he was paid off twice in 4 years I would guess over 500,000 k – so thinK again- and there is an unofficial managers union unlike nurses doctors fire and ambulance service to name a few get castigated and condemned for being poorly paid and simply BELONGING TO A TRADE UNION having the gall to ask for more suggest you read the Ragged Trousered Philantropist by Rober Tressel published over 90 years ago but still so truthful- and in still in the top 500 books sold in the UK enough said. FEEL SORRY FOR SACKED FOOTBALL MANAGERS IN THE TOP 2 DIVISIONS NEVER.

    • Texas Pete says:

      My apologies for not explaining fully. I was talking about any manager that takes a job at Derby should be receiving compensation when he takes it on, not when he is fired. I was meaning that the expectations of the club are sick and unreasonable if the team is attaining a playoff position and that is seen as not good enough. It is a very tough league and ten teams could emerge as the top three.

  • Pods says:

    Bring back Lee Clark

  • Bluenosesol says:

    I think GR will stay, however not long ago, we were in dire straits financially according to our board, we were stuck at the bottom of the table and we had just sacked our manager and then suffered a humiliating home defeat 0-8. Our gates were dipping below the 10k mark. A new and relatively inexperienced manager came along who was not on many people’s preferred list. Move the clock on a little and we are much more stable financially, we are pushing for the top third and we have decent gates pushing 20k. A proposition that would excite many a decent manager. We love GR and pray that he stays (which I think he will), but if he goes, then it isn’t doom and gloom, its the beginning of a new and exciting era!

    • atko says:

      I think the problem is GR was THE best manager outside of the top 2 divisions and we managed to get him. Why was that so important? I think if we had brought in any other manager who had Championship experience they would have struggled. Panos is a businessman and knows his stuff and getting GR was a stroke of genious because he was used to building a team that cost very little and getting a little success with it. This is the kind of manager we need until this bloody takeover is done and dusted. This kind of manager is the only kind that can bring success in my opinion until it’s all done. Personally, I don’t think GR will leave Blues. Derby are not really any better off than us from a footballing point of view and I highly doubt he will leave for a rival club as it won’t actually better his career by doing so. If he were moving to a Premier League team that would be different. He has already said a month or so ago he is staying after the QPR fiasco and I don’t see anything has changed since then. He’s even signed a new contract so I am happy to ignore the media and social media BS.

  • I have never seen a manager walk out of a club with a smile on his face , the realisation that you have been classed a failure no matter how much you will get is gut wrenching , Clement has been a coach at Chelsea , PSG and real Madrid , and in his first job as manager he gets the best points total ever in the first half of the season , has a short poor spell and is sacked , from sows ear to silk purse in 8months , I don’t think so , I think Paul is like GR a nice bloke and some might around Derby might have thought that as a weakness , hence Mel telling the players off in the dressing room , which wouldn’t have gone down well , if I was treated like many managers are treated I think I would want a good settlement ..

  • Mitchell says:

    In response to annoying some commenters regarding the status of GR. I totally agree that he is a good manager as my opening sentence stated earlier in the day .My issue is that he is not that great a manager where clubs queue up for. To us he has turned the club around and we are all grateful but not forever on our knees in gratitude. GR has flaws which is normal – defeats at home to Rotherham,Charlton,Wolves,Huddersfield and now Sheff.Wed. is not tactically clever when at home.Signings of Fabbrini and Buckley not imo needed at all. Crying out loud has been the need for a bloody good CH to partner Morrison. Had this tactical action been taken months ago then perhaps our one step forward and two back all the time would be history. If this still annoys Atko then I am sorry but don’t just come back with crossing the city- you are better than that.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      There are good managers and very good managers, as there are poor managers and very poor managers. The great ones are very few and far between these days. You have to earn the right to be called ‘a great’ and you don’t do that in 2 or 3 years, or even 5.

      Rowett has proved he’s a very good manager… only time will tell if he’ll become a great. I hope he does, but it’s unlikely to be with us.

    • Hillfield Blues says:

      Utter nonsense.Isn’t GR trying to address our home form by signing the likes of Buckley and Fabrini to give us some creativity?
      Our defence has shown play off form all season so how does signing defenders enhance our push for a playoff place?…….did we not sign Shotton anyway?
      I’m also interested to know that if GR isn’t good enough as a manager to have a que of clubs after him what more could he have done with the resources he has had?.Is a good challenge for the playoffs not good enough?…or do you want automatic?

  • Your right Mitchell but I see Gary as a good long term manager as I think he as a lot going for him , I think he will in time make the club good for the best reasons , my own personal thoughts on fabbrini is that he is needed to up the anti ,for young players will learn his skills , and against some teams whereby we just cannot penetrate there defence there will always be Fabs magic tricks , at the moment he is fed up with being brought down and is trying to take advantage of the fact but its not working , he will come good , Buckley was the business not long ago and could be again., what I am trying to say is that in the long run is cut out the Jan window ,all contracts should be binding from summer to summer at least , apprentices for young players should be signed by parents at 16 and be binding until they are 20 and then would require a normal fee if sold ,

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Darren Wassell caretaker of Derby and Nicky Eaden caretaker at Rotherham. Both ex-Blues.

  • Mattblue says:

    Mitchell: Fair point and I agree we should have signed a CH and LB. However, we don’t know what goes on behind the scenes. Were CHs and LBs available that are better than what we already have? If players were available, were they within our price range and wage budget? Rowett talks a lot about bringing players in with the right mentality; I think a lot of our success has been down to this. I would loathe to see mercenaries like Hleb and Bentley at our club again. The players we have at the moment seem to gel and work hard; I appreciate that as a fan.

    Anyone know how much Diego is actually on? Toral is class. Shinnie’s achilles heel was his strength but I still thought he was a great player last season. If Diego is on a lot of money, it must be a signing made with next season in mind; I think it’ll be difficult to keep hold of Toral.

  • ChrisG says:

    Are bluenoses the most paranoid supporters ever?. Why do people keep second guessing GR?, i’ve seen comments saying “if he don’t go now he could go in the summer”. WHY?, How the hell does anyone know this when Rowett probably doesn’t?. He’s just signed a new improved contract, he’s got a good relationship with Panos, he’s not bothered by the ownership issue, he loves the fact the fans are getting behind the team & most of all he has the opportunity to build something special at BCFC & be given time to do it, which is something very few managers get, in turn gaining hero status. He could stay at Blues another 5 years yet & still be young enough to forefill all his ambitions if that’s what he wants.

    • AdamTrueBlue says:

      Here here, well said, I get totally peed off with people saying if he doesnt go now he will in the summer, why will he? How do they know? To many clairvoyants on this site, can they give me the lotto numbers. Kro

    • Hillfield Blues says:

      Completely agree.His stock is high at the moment and he’s still learning at this level.Too many flapping around every time s job comes up imo.

  • .KC says:

    Only GR knows what his intentions will be. Going forward he must be proud of what he has and is achieving at Stans but on Radio Derby on the return journey he did comment how much he liked how their structure was developing and it was obvious there was an element of admiration.

    He has got us in to a fantastic position but he will make a few mistakes. Yes we could have done with a specialist centre back, and if Vaughan doesn’t start to look a little more dangerous , even though he has generally only made cameo appearances, a proven goalscorer- not easy to find.. And BM is certainly not the solution. I cannot understand the early criticism of Fabbrini. He was brilliant for us last season and adds something very different but both he and Buckley have come into a midfield/upfront that looked very settled and successful. It was probably wrong to bring him on Saturday but I can understand GR being torn between him and Davis at that point. When he was on he was awarded two free kicks and then was definitely fouled in the build up to the 2nd goal and most refs I’m sure would have given a penalty when the defender conveniently left his leg dangling when Fabbrini was on the move. As said before ref should rule on reality not perception. KRO with GR,Fabrinni, Toral etc etc

  • andy says:

    There may not be such thing as loyalty in football other than Steve Bull! But Gary Rowett has made it clear that he and Birmingham will gradually build over the next 2-3 years so I would say that in itself is a statement of intent and failure to win promotion this season doesn’t mean GR will do a Chris Hughton because Blues are in a better place under the guidance of Panos right now

  • Yes Chris G your right Bluenoses can see the sky falling , and we are letting off enough steam to open all the coal mines up again , I think we should start singing Que Sera Sera at blues next game after our anthem keep right on ..so start us off Chris G …from the left QUE SERA SERA what ever will be will be , daft as a brush the lot of us ….KRO

  • stay with us Gary we have a dream steer us through the journey to glory


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