Dale unveil Coleman as new manager
Reporter: Martin Culshaw
Date online: 24 January 2012
Accrington Stanley manager, John Coleman, has been named as new Rochdale manager.
Coleman takes the Spotland hot seat after Steve Eyre was sacked back in December.
He brings with him his assistant from Stanley, Jimmy Bell who will work alongside him as the pair try to stave off the threat of relegation.
Speaking at a packed press conference today, the new man in charge said: “The opportunity came to me from a local club to move up in my career. I’m ambitious, I want to compete at a higher level and I felt Rochdale gave me that vehicle to help me go where I want to go which is the highest level I possibly can.
“It’s a big ask to keep Rochdale in League One but we will be playing in big games and we will be playing in entertaining games. My main focus at the minute is the game against Bury on Saturday which will take us a baby step towards the main aims we have got which is survival.
“Myself and Jimmy have met the players and had a training session with them today. There will be no day off for them this week as we try and get a bit a belief in them. Make them realise it’s a new start for everybody including myself and Jimmy. There are good players that have been brought to the club by previous managers so we will work with them, maybe make one or two additions before the transfer window shuts next week.”
He added: “It’s a big wrench when you have been somewhere for 13 years and it wasn’t a decision we took lightly. We know a lot about Rochdale after playing against them for a number of years, we have seen the success they have had. We have seen how well they are run and you speak to people about the club, including the last manager (Steve Eyre) and they have nothing but great things to say about them. We knew we were coming into a place where you will get the opportunity to move on.
“We had to let our heads rule our heart when we left Accrington. No disrespect to Accrington but the infrastructure here is better than at Accrington but they haven’t been a league club as long as Rochdale.
“There were a lot of tears when we left there and we have made a lot of friends who will be friends for life. Even yesterday I was having second and third thoughts but I know I have made the correct decision.
“Saturday’s game against Bury will have extra needle as it’s a local derby, it will be passionate for the fans but if I had to sum up myself and Jimmy’s philosophy in football it would be passion and you won’t get a more passionate game than here on Saturday.”
Rochdale Chief executive Colin Garlick, added: “It’s no secret that the season hasn’t gone the way we had planned so the Board considered their options with regards to where we go in the future and we believe we have got the right man to take us where we want to go in the immediate future aswell as the long term.”
Chairman Chris Dunphy was unavailable to attend the press conference due to a pre-arranged business trip but in a statement he said: “I would like to welcome John and Jimmy to the club. We, as a board, felt that John Coleman was the right man to take us forward and I’m delighted to secure his services.
“This season hasn’t panned out the way we wanted, and we of course find ourselves in a difficult position in the league. Since the departure of Steve Eyre in December we have been looking at all our options and I believe John and Jimmy are the right men for the job now and in the future”
Coleman’s first game in charge will be against local rivals Bury when the Shakers visit Spotland on Saturday. You will be able to read a full match report from that game on Rochdale Online after the game.
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