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Hurst Gets Another Season
By: Rob Sedgwick
THE Grimsby Town board have decided to continue with manager Paul Hurst for another year, despite the team failing to progress beyond the play-off semis for the second successive season. Some fans felt that Hurst was too defensive minded and would have liked to see a change.
Hurst has a rolling one year contract, so any decision to replace the manager would have probably reduced the playing budget for next season, and meant a smaller playing squad.
Hurst has probably been the most consistent manager over the last two seasons in the Conference who has stayed with one club throughout that period, but Town - like England - seem to be only able to get so far when it comes to the big games. Two successive fourth placed finishes had got Town to the play-offs but defeats by Newport and Gateshead have seen other teams head to Wembley for the ultimate decider.
This year was the first time that two fans representatives were on the board, so the voice of the supporters was present during the meeting, as well as those who have one eye on the balance sheets.
Town director John Fenty explained the board's decision to the Grimsby Telegraph: "We've been talking only about the future, looking to next season and planning on how to improve what have been two good seasons.
"We've got a manager here who has taken us to the play-offs in successive seasons and the objective of yesterday's meeting was to see how we can go one step further.
"It was an extremely positive discussion - as it needed to be, because we've got to pick everyone up and demonstrate that we've got the ability to go again next season. You have to believe that you can improve on your past - that's what we're looking to do.
"People mustn't lose sight of what we've done in the last two seasons.
"Yes, we faltered at the end for one reason or another, but we need to find a solution - that's all that we're interested in working towards."
Hurst has his work cut out this summer as nearly the entire squad is out of contract. It's likely that the Grimsby Town team will have a lot of new faces in next season.
Grim Rob Says: On balance, it seems the best decision. Without Luton, next season will be a much more level playing field and if Town maintain a competitive budget they should be able to better their fourth place finish, and maybe challenge for the Champions trophy and one automatic promotion place.
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