harriers-online aggborough news
19th October 2003 
Who's pulling the strings now?

With the rumours flying round Aggborough in the past few days it seemed only a matter of time before someone would crack.  That finally came at lunchtime yesterday when the Express & Star released the news that had been fed to them that Ian Britton was to be sacked, irrespective of the result at Swansea, and that Jan Molby was to return to Aggborough.

Who fed the story to them is a matter of conjecture seeing that it's Colin Youngjohns being quoted but I don't think they are Colin's words:

"We are in a results-driven business and we are not getting results".

Ian BrittonJan Molby This comes soon after the news that Ian Britton, who had just sealed the signature of Wayne Hatswell from Chester City, had been told that the other two new faces he had lined up had been put on hold.  The one would have been a keeper, Anthony Williams from Hartlepool, and the other was an unknown striker who had got crocked in a midweek game.

"We halted the loan deals because we wanted to sit back and have a good look at the situation first.

The playing side is under constant review, but particularly so when we are not getting results."
  Said Youngjohns.

With the signing of Hatswell being bankrolled by someone other than the board then Brit must have known that his time was up.  The money lender had played his hand and the next step was to prepare the way for a new manager.

Or should that be 'old manager'.

It's no secret that the major shareholder at the club isn't happy with the way the club is being run at the moment but it's also no secret that Jan Molby left the club under a cloud when he decided to go to a real football club at Hull City.

Now Molby is set to return will it also be a return of Lionel Newton as chairman?  Yes, I believe it will.  Mr Newton seems to have a bit more clout by being 'behind the scenes' but his successor Youngjohns is seen as being weak and not the type of man to be running a football club.  Now that the wheels have started turning I expect Lionel to be back in office very soon.

Does this signal a return to the old days of players being cold shouldered by Jan and Lionel getting angry with local industry for not supporting the club?

For the first point, yes.  Jan Molby is a very headstrong man and not one to change his ways overnight.  I see dark days ahead for some of the squad.

Mr Newton, I hope, has mellowed and will probably accept that Brintons, Sealine and other major employers (are there any?) will still not be prepared to back the club and that he will need to have some damn good pockets in his trousers.

It's the fans that will be most bemused by all of this.

When Jan first came to the club we were in the Conference and although we weren't struggling we did seem to be going nowhere.  In only his second season he got us into the Football League with the help of Mike Marsh and won the hearts of all Harriers fans.  Anyone who went to Woking will never forget the non stop chanting of 'Jan Molby's Barmy Army'.

After a steady debut season in the League things started to turn sour with Jan falling out with players, bringing in under performing new signings and Lionel Newton criticising fans and industry alike for not turning out in their thousands with their thousands.

The crunch came before Cheltenham with the rumours going round that Jan had been tapped up by an ambitious chairman at Hull City and that he would stop at nothing to get him.  As a team we were still holding our own in a tough division but that wasn't enough for Jan.  He felt the time was right to go but he could at least have given us a farewell wave at Waddle Rd.

That was what upset the fans most.  His failure to acknowledge that it was the fans who had stuck by the club and by him.

The following season at Hull things weren't going according to plan.  The fickle Northeners couldn't understand why the ball was being passed around with out any goals being scored.  They wanted a bit of good old route one.

Again it was Kidderminster that was the breaking of Jan Molby with the much hyped return just over a year ago when he bought his Tigers down here.

The roar of derision towards him from the North Bank was probably expected but not the manner in which his new side collapsed.  How the score was kept down to 1-0 was a miracle but the fact that HIS signing, Bo Henriksen, was the one to twist the knife was the killer.

Two days later Jan Molby was sacked from Hull City and Peter Taylor was installed soon after.  The Tigers had got their long ball back.

Now how do the fans feel about having their Molby back?

According to the official message board, (no one posts on this one anymore!), as the news first broke the voting seems to be 75/25 against but as the Official Announcement draws closer on Monday morning I think it will start to even up.

At first some of the more honourable fans will cease to come to Aggborough but if Molby's magic comes back with him eventually the dissenters will return.

If the magic fails to appear and everything goes pear shaped what then?

All we need now is for Bobby Gould to get the job and I'll look a bit daft!
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