City could rue axing players

Last updated : 20 May 2007 By Ben Collins
Credit to the board for making a swift decision on sacking Stuart Pearce but I wonder who exactly is running the playing side of things now that Pearce and his backroom team have gone.

City released eight players last Tuesday, and while four of those never featured for the first team, I believe the decision to axe the other four could be critical mistake.

DaMarcus Beasley and Hatem Trabelsi hardly set the world alight after joining City last summer but much of that was down to Pearce. He chopped and changed the line-up and when they did feature, Pearce didn't use them correctly. They were Pearce's signings so he should have had an idea where he wanted them to fit into his plans.
Pearce also failed to motivate them properly, but although he failed in that department, what's to say a different manager could have got the best out of Beasley and Trabelsi? After all, that's why clubs make managerial changes.
I'm sure the new manager - whoever he may be - would have liked two proven Champions League players on his books, so with Pearce departing, who exactly made these decisions?

I feel the same about Stephen Jordan and Trevor Sinclair, the other two players to be released by City.

Although Michael Ball impressed after joining City from PSV Eindhoven in January and established himself as the first-choice left-back, surely there is still room for Jordan in the City squad. The Academy graduate was never going to be a superstar but he now has 57 Premiership starts under his belt and that kind of experience would have been a useful asset. With Ben Thatcher having been let go earlier in the season, we now have no cover at left-back.

Obviously, Sinclair is getting on a bit and was hampered by injury during his four years with City, making just 65 Premiership starts, but again, surely a player of his experience was worth having around for another year. The new manager should at least have been given the option of keeping him, and the rest of the players we released.

There are financial concerns for the club, with Beasley, Sinclair and Trabelsi probably on decent wages, yet if the board acted with this in mind then it adds weight to Pearce's claim that he didn't feel he was backed enough by the City board.