I donít see Rusk as the problem. He is a symptom, rather than the disease for me. I have said here recently that if you want success on the pitch, the most important person at the club is the manager. Not the DoF, star signing, award winning keeper or similar. It is the manager.
I donít really need to nail my flag to the JG mast here as I have made my thoughts very clear on him many times. Certainly not perfect, sometimes gets it wrong, but gets more right than wrong and has a truly unparalleled record as manager of this club. Of all the issues Mark Stott faced when setting out his plan to get us to the Championship, who should be manager was pretty much bottom of the list.
I have worked at Board level of businesses for over 20 years now and fully understand the need for solid corporate structures, lines of reporting, etc., and I really do understand why Stott put in place the structure he has/is doing. However, what he has done is failed to appreciate the unique nature of what is required to make a successful football club. You only have to look at the number of managers who get sacked every season to realise how difficult it is to get a good manager who fits a club. I remember when Alan Pardew took Charlton to 8th in the Premiership for something like the 4th time in 5 years and faced a charge from the fans that heíd taken them as far as he could and it was time for some one else to take them to the next level. Charltonís demise after removing him was swift and long standing.
Stott has placed his faith in the corporate structure, but it is almost always the case in such businesses that when there are operational problems, it is the operational managers who are changed, rather than the directors. Whilst Simon Wilson is DoF and pulling the strings, I can see little benefit from changing the manager. Rusk is, in my eyes, dull, uninspiring and somewhat out of his depth, but he has been in charge for less than a year. I honestly canít see what is to be gained by changing the manager right now whilst the current structure remains in place. Unless Mr Stott changes the power base within the club away from the DoF and to the manager, we might as well stick with Rusk and give him another year of two to see if he can develop the skills he is purported as having and turn around the playing side of the club.
For me, Stott has got his biggest call since he took over totally wrong. It saddens and angers me deeply that we have simply become another Salford, Harrogate, Fylde, North Ferriby, etc. by chucking wedges of cash at the playing budget and hoping that enough of it will stick when there was no need. It is not MY Stockport County anymore and not what I want to see. For those happy to see the grandiose plans for the future and the unsustainable levels of cash being thrown at the club, enjoy the ride. I hope it gives you what you want. I have felt nothing but sadness and loss of my club over the last months and still do feel empty about the club I have loved over 40 years.
Good luck Simon Rusk, you need it right now, but what is happening is not all your fault.
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