MARK MAGUIRE accepts the Chester board were left with no option but to part company with manager Jon McCarthy after a dire sequence of results.
The 47-year-old was sacked from his role as first-team boss yesterday following Tuesday’s dismal 2-0 defeat at Solihull Moors, a game which McCarthy had been informed he needed to win if he was to retain the backing of the club.
The Blues board opted to end McCarthy’s 17-month spell in charge after taking just seven points from the last 42 available, leaving the side 21st in the National League.
Yet it was Chester’s home form which has truly cost McCarthy, overseeing a club-record equalling winless home streak of 14 matches, which caretaker manager Tom Shaw will now look to bring to a halt when the Blues tackle Ebbsfleet United on Saturday.
“This is a decision which has been made by the board. We took the decision at the end of last season to back the manager, in particular in the summer with the recruitment,” he explained.
“However, we knew the first 10 games this season were crucial in respect to that poor run of form at home from the end of last season. It needed to be a strong start to the season, sadly it hasn’t happened.
“There’s been a strength of feeling from the supporters but it’s important in these instances as a board to remain balanced and to go about things in a professional manner.
“Performances this season have not been as we’d hoped but we felt there were two winnable fixtures at Torquay and Solihull, where we needed to see not only some positive results, but also improved performances. Sadly that was not the case.
“We took the decision not to be too reactive last week but this is a business which boils down to results. Sadly we came to the decision this morning to terminate Jon’s contract with immediate effect, and that was done with a heavy heart.”
Maguire conceded there had been ‘tearful goodbyes’ at the Swansway Chester Stadium yesterday morning as McCarthy spoke to his backroom staff and volunteers around the club.
“Let me say this: Jon is a fantastic individual and it was tears all around the office and the ground this morning as Jon said his goodbyes, he’s extremely well liked here and amongst his backroom staff,” Maguire continued.
“There are a number of criteria required to be a successful football manager and Jon has done a fine job in many regards. He’s a thoroughly decent man who could not have worked any harder to try and deliver success for the football club.
“The CFU Board and the Operational Board have acted professionally and we’ve been strong in making sure we didn’t respond in a reactionary fashion.”
The Blues will look to have a new manager in place for the home game against Maidenhead on September 23, with Shaw set to be assisted by Dave Felgate and Calum McIntyre for the next three matches, which includes long trips to Gateshead and Dover Athletic next week.
“We go into the process with a completely open mind in terms of Jon’s successor,” Maguire added.
“There will be a meeting tonight of the board to finalise the criteria required, and an advert will go out with a deadline for applications.
“We’ve asked Tom, assisted by Dave and Calum, to take charge of the next three matches. We therefore would hope to have someone in place by the Maidenhead game.”
See full story in the Chester Leader