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Date: 07-01-14 gif Steve Burr and the Harriers part ways
Following two months of worrying about what would be the outcome of Steve Burrs supposed talks with Forest Green today we found out when the clubs board, ie the Serrells, announced that with immediate effect Steve Burr had been relieved of his duties and was no longer with the club.  To say that it had come with bad timing is an understatement of the highest order considering our finishing position in the League last season and then the better start to this that culminated in last Saturdays home draw against League 1 Peterborough in the FA Cup and possibly the chance to play at Premiership team Sunderland in the next round.

Steve Burr That alone begs the question as to why on earth would a club on the cusp of greater things, for our level, want to throw it all away on the whim of a chairman who cannot see below the bottom of his floppy fringe.  You could say that our recent league form hasn't been any great shakes but then I could point to that opening run of five straight defeats and then five straight draws last season and that totally overshadows our four losses in four weeks that we are going through at the moment.

No, that cannot be the real reason.  A decent chairman would have given a great, highly respected manager much longer and not come out with tripe like this:

"The Board of Directors would like to state explicitly again that its sole ambition for this season is to achieve promotion back to the Football League and that they are fully committed to taking whatever step necessary to reach that goal."

And then later on:

"It's fair to say the board of directors have been considering a lot of things over the last few weeks....It was felt in the best interests of the club - in terms of achieving our aim of promotion to the Football League this season - to carry on without Steve."

"It was the board's decision."


That explains it all then.  We must have an even better manager lined up to take over at a lower price than Steve Burr was being paid because there's no way this club can afford to pay any more than that.  How about the failed Hereford manager Martin Foyle or the flash in the pan Kevin Wilkin at Nuneaton?  These are the names that have been mentioned so far and, like me, I'm sure Harriers fans can wait a little longer before that comes to fruition.

So let's get back to the start then.

Steve Burr was appointed as the new Kidderminster Harriers manager on January 21st 2010 following Mark Yates' departure to Cheltenham Town a month previous.  Burr got off to a great start at Aggborough with an unbeaten eight game run that, by the end of the season, saw the club just missing out on a finalists place in the FA Trophy and a drop in form seeing them end in thirteenth place after having been in the play-off places just a few weeks earlier.

Steve Burr The following season Grimsby Town asked permission to speak to Burr in relation to their vacant managerial position but the club, led by Mark Serrell, refused them and instead gave Burr and his assistant Gary Whild an enhanced contract extension until the end of this season.  Burr repaid that faith by taking the club to sixth place in the 2011-12 season and just missing out on the lucrative play-offs.

Last season we went four better and finished as runners up behind Mansfield but lost in a two legged play off against Wrexham to decide who would play Newport in the final at Wembley.  Steve Burr managed that even after that disastrous start mentioned earlier on.  He was named as the Blue Square Premier Manager of the Season rather than the manager that actually won the title, Mansfield's Paul Cox.

Two months ago it was announced that Burr had been given permission to speak with Forest Green Rovers about the vacant managerial job there but he turned down the offer and elected to stay at the Harriers.  Some thoughts were centered around Steve Burr not actually wanting to talk to FGR, but had been told to, then calling a bluff by saying he was no longer interested in the job.

Some felt that after that episode Steve Burr had 'lost the dressing room' and the players weren't happy with what was going on but going by players tweets etc that was far from being the case.  Ok, he must have fallen out with a few that he thought weren't pulling their weight or had been bought in without his say so but you get that at all clubs and generally the squad seem to be a contented lot.

The recent results may have been something to do with it but as said before it's only a handful of games and we are still vying for a top five place and have remained in the FA Cup a lot longer than many other clubs at a much, much higher level.  It could be that our manager has been talking to other clubs since that fateful FGR episode and some rumours are surfacing that he could have been in talks with Northampton Town last week with a view to joining them.  I, personally, find that hard to believe and feel that the real reason is down to another rumour doing the rounds.

That rumour is that the club have been courting a consortium with links to Swindon Town and with that group being led by someone that lives in or around Evesham who also has links with a failed manager of that towns football club.  That failed manager has also been seen at Aggborough in recent weeks.

It has also been mentioned that the Serrells want out of the club and that they have put their house on the market with a view to leaving the country to live in Turkey.  It doesn't take a magician to conjure up something from that.

If that is the way those within the club are thinking then it's no wonder that Steve Burr has left the club he loves and the fans that loved him.




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