Bristol City worse off after sacking Steve Cotterill

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The chairmen and the boards of football clubs never learn do they?

Whether it be Leeds United and the ridiculous Massimo Cellino or the possibly even more ludicrous Roland Duchâtelet at Charlton Athletic, you would think that Steve Cotterill would have been cut a little slack at Bristol City having saved them from relegation one season then gained promotion the next, winning their first league title since 1955, plus the Johnstone's Paint Trophy.

All the while playing with an exciting brand of football that is normally more accustomed to the Premier League, not League One where it was being carried out nearly every week, twice a week. But no.


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Of course being 22nd place in the Championship is not good, but with his record at the club that had not one blemish on it, he deserved a much longer stay of execution (they were 23rd in the division below when he took over).

It's not as if Cotterill came in while they were going for promotion or were mid-table in the Championship having spent a fortune on players that didn't work out.

Club chairman Keith Dawe said last season's success "will live in the memory for a long time" but added: "Sadly, since the highs of last March and May things have not gone our way on the pitch.

"The club's aspiration is to ultimately become a Premier League club and this decision has been made to achieve our overall strategy for growth and player development."

What a load of cobblers. Typical chairman/non-football-person-speak. Once again, the person with the most power in a football club treats his manager like a picker/packer in a warehouse who hasn't met their targets. Football is an entirely different ball game. There are teams competing against each other and not everyone can win.

One could say ''well, he's been beaten, so his game plan is wrong,'' but this would be ignoring other factors such as expenditure and dodgy decisions going against a side during a match. Despite City being in the position they are in, Cotterill was building something there.

In the last ten years or so there has been a few instances when a club has struggled one season in England's second tier then gained promoted the next: Hull City (2007-08), Blackpool (2010-11), Crystal Palace (2012-13) to name but a few.

Interim boss John Pemberton said: ''We lost a good guy and the players were disappointed.'' Cotterill obviously had a rapport with the players both on and off the pitch and this was a difficult spell they would have likely got themselves out.

It is a club with a lot of potential, thanks to the size of the city and their fan base, but that promise could have been far greater had they stuck with Cotterill.

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