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Roeder, Ferguson and Groves??

By: Bill Osborne
Date: 09/05/2003

DESPITE the very worst of intent, it seems that the recent rumours surrounding Terry Cooke are unfounded. In his statement to the Grimsby Telegraph recently he said he has performed professionally and has not been a problem.

No one at the club has yet rebuked that statement so we have to assume it was correct.

The 'official' reason given for his absence from the squad was that he had to play for his place thereby indicating that the players chosen before him are better. But those who have seen him play say that is not the case.

Therefore, the suggestions that it is a clash of personalities with the manager that has affected his selection, may have some validity. But we might never know until Cooke leaves the club.

If it has been personalities that have been the cause, it is fair to point out that managers do not have the right to exclude players for personal reasons. If the player is good enough he should be selected and the manager should not let personal differences get in the way.

Last Saturday, Paulo DiCanio scored a goal that may well have saved West Ham from relegation. Yet DiCanio was frozen out due to personality clashes with the manager until Brooking brought him back into the team. The exclusion of DiCanio might also cost the manager dearly.

Last season Alex Ferguson paid a price for getting rid of Jap Staam, which again was down to personalities. United's defence took some time to recover from the loss of Staam and may have been the reason they lost the championship.

Managers have a responsibility to use their best resources to achieve their aims regardless of personalities. In a club that is very short of resources, it is plain stupidity to allow personalities to affect its outcomes. Let us hope that this was not the case in relation to Cooke, but I have my suspicions!

I am not suggesting for one moment that Grimsby Town would have avoided relegation with Cooke in the team but he is rated by a great number of fans as much better than some of the players who were chosen before him.

If Groves does not offer Cooke another deal, and the latest indications are that he won't, his time at Blundell Park has been a waste of money. All Grimsby Town are left with is another disgruntled player and wasted wages. Oh! I nearly forgot, and a few of the regular donkeys vying for another season on 40 quid a week!

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