The Sporting Chameleon

an absolute cheesecake of a sports blog

Peterborough Fry up an odd choice

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PETERBOROUGH UNITED yesterday confirmed the appointment of Mark Cooper as their new manager to replace Darren Ferguson, who was sacked last week.

Ferguson was sacked, sorry left by mutual consent, despite signing a new four-year contract in July, after leading Posh to back-to-back promotions and taking them to the second tier of English football for only the second time in their 75-year history.

This is not the first example this season of a club sacking a manager, only months after great success.

The nation’s armchair football fans were treated yesterday to Huddersfield Town’s 6-0 demolition of Wycombe Wanderers in League One.

This was Gary Waddock’s fifth game as Wycombe manager and he has not won one of them, leaving them as rooted to the foot of the table as they were when he arrived.

Former England manager Peter Taylor was sacked by Wycombe, sorry left by mutual consent, just five months after guiding them to promotion.

But Wycombe replaced Taylor with a manager who achieved success with a club just one division lower.

Peterborough director of football Barry Fry and chairman Darragh MacAnthony have replaced Ferguson with a man, who has no league managerial experience.

Cooper has had two successful seasons with Kettering, leading them to the much-coveted Conference North title in 2007-08 and an eighth place finish in last season’s Conference Premier, with the Poppies currently sat third in the league this season.

His only other previous managerial experience was a spell at Tamworth, who sacked him, sorry he left by mutual consent, after he won fewer than 30% of matches in his two and a half seasons at the Lamb Ground.

I heard from a very reputable source (I earwigged two blokes in the pub) that Gareth Southgate and Steve Coppell both applied for the vacancy and MacAnthony admitted that: “Some (of the applicants) were previous international managers and ex-England internationals, foreign managers and managers with experience.”

In November 2007 Port Vale appointed Lee Sinnott as their manager after he guided Farsley Celtic to the Conference Premier with three promotions in four seasons.

Less than a year later Sinnott was sacked, actually sacked, by Port Vale, following a relegation and an abject start to the new season and Sinnott’s last involvement in football was his sacking, sorry he left by mutual consent, from the Unibond Premier’s Bradford Park Avenue last month.

Either way Ferguson should not worry too much, as a new job should come knocking soon (he turned down Reading and QPR in the summer).

It may even be the perfect time to enjoy some quality time with the family, before stepping into his dad’s shoes at Manchester United, if the old man decides to call it quits at the end of the season and the Glazers decide to make the Old Trafford managerial post a hereditary role.

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