Steve McClaren is on the merry-go-round of management again having just been surprisingly hired back at Derby County where he was fired last year.
That was after Derby basically collapsed in the second half of the 2014-2015 season when for some strange (and unknown) reason Managing Director Lee Charnley of Newcastle wanted Steve to replace the recently departed Alan Pardew.
And it’s a lucrative business being fired and returning quickly to another job, because you get a big payoff when your are fired – usually a year’s wages – so Steve will not be short of money.
Steve McClaren – a typical stance on the touchline while at Newcastle
But it’s a difficult business when you switch clubs, especially when you return to a former club you really wanted to leave before you were actually fired – but never actually said that.
That was Steve’s position last year when he was still managing Derby County and when he did join Newcastle for a completely disastrous spell on Tyneside, he said Newcastle was a club he always wanted to manage.
So given that rather murky background, here’s what Steve carefully said when he was appointed as Derby County manager on Wednesday:
“I am a very, very lucky person, I feel very lucky, very honored to be given the opportunity to come back.”
“My mistake was not quashing the Newcastle speculation (last year), not dampening that, and not committing.”
“That is my fault and I apologise for that, by the time I had committed to the Derby, the club had every right to sack me, and they did.”
“I could have no qualms about it.”
He was then asked if he can see why Derby fans might be angry at his conduct last year and this is how he answered that:
“Absolutely and I can understand it. As I said, I failed to quash that, calm that, and that was my mistake. I did not do it quickly enough and, by the end, it was too late.”
“I always felt I had a good relationship here with people, the staff, the players, the supporters.”
“It was really just an unfortunate end last time that has really soured things: for myself, the staff, the players, the supporters, for everybody.
“I have to accept some responsibility for that, and I do, but I am looking forward to what is a fantastic challenge.”
“Now we have to work together and produce a team the supporters can once again be proud of.”
Now having heard what Steve has said rejoining Derby – here’s what he said when he was appointed as the Newcastle manager on June 10th last year after returning from his summer vacation in Greece:
“I am privileged to be appointed head coach of Newcastle United. This is a big club with a wonderful heritage.”
“St. James’ Park is like a cathedral on a Saturday afternoon, a symbol for the city and I am excited to be given this opportunity.”
“I know how important Newcastle United is to the city and the region.” “The supporters are some of the most loyal, passionate and devoted in the world.”
“Despite everything they maintain their faith. We owe it to them to do everything we can to reward them with success.”
“There’s a lot of work to do, but the Club has made it clear about wanting success and I would not have come here if I didn’t believe they were serious.”
“This Club has waited far too long to win a trophy. That’s one of my primary objectives here.” “I am privileged to be appointed head coach of Newcastle United.”
“I’ve already won trophies as a manager, and a club the size of Newcastle United should be winning cups and finishing in the top eight in the Premier League.”
After all those fancy comments Steve was the one who now has the worst record of any Newcastle manager in the Premier League with 24 points from the first 28 games.
While he is supposed to be a good coach on the training pitch he doesn’t seem to have the man-management necessary to be tough with players when you have to be.
Here’s his dismal record at Newcastle where he was completely out of his depth.
When you are a manager who regularly changes clubs because you get sacked then you have to be very nimble on your feet when you are interviewed for the new job and adjust your comments accordingly.
What Steve really thinks about all this is anybody’s guess.