Burnley and Cotterill part company

Last updated : 09 November 2007 By Tony Scholes
It came via an email, a suggestion that Steve Cotterill had left Turf Moor, but it wasn't clear who had made the decision, if in fact any such decision had been made. Not for one minute did I think Steve was on the brink of quitting, he certainly didn't give me that impression when I last spoke to him.

Having said that, he looked down and very subdued at the after match press conference on Tuesday night and was clearly disturbed at his inability to get players in on loan to bolster the squad. Not as though the fans were happy either, it had been a dire night for anyone with any interest in our club.

I wasn't so sure that a change of manager was on the agenda for the board either. Recent conversations had given no hint at all, so when the news was confirmed not too long after 1:00 p.m. I was stunned, even though by that time it seemed as though every man and his dog in town had heard.

"Burnley Football Club can confirm that first team manager Steve Cotterill has left the club by mutual consent," came the news. In other words, he'd been sacked in this new modern way that football clubs do it. He became the first Burnley manager to be dismissed part way through a season, and the first to have his contract terminated since Jimmy Mullen departed in February 1996.

It leaves the Clarets looking for a new manager for the first time in over three years, and such is the role that in that time Steve Cotterill had become the 12th longest serving manager in the Premier and Football Leagues and the longest serving in the Championship.

There will be more on Steve Cotterill - but for now he goes with my best wishes.