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Shearer in the P&J


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Ex-Don Shearer cuts to the quick

Halting Aberdeen’s SPL freefall will be McGHEE’S BIGGEST MANAGERIAL TEST, SAYS DUNCAN

 

By Paul Third

 

Published: 13/04/2010

 

Former Aberdeen centre forward and assistant manager Duncan Shearer fears the Dons are plummeting to the bottom of the SPL and only the First Division will break their fall.

 

Shearer, who served the club with distinction as a player before returning to Pittodrie from Caley Thistle as former manager Steve Paterson’s assistant, is deeply worried at his former club’s dramatic fall from grace.

 

Sunday’s 3-1 home defeat by St Johnstone leaves Mark McGhee’s side just six points off the foot of the division with five games remaining and Shearer knows the slim margin is cause for alarm. He said: “Everybody with a connection to the club should be worried. I was asked when Mark was given the job if he would be a good appointment and the truth of the matter is no one knows how things will turn out.

 

“I said at the time he had to be given a couple of years to put his own stamp on the club but I didn’t envisage this scenario happening.

 

“I saw a few games in the first half of the season and, from the first match against Sigma Olomouc, there has been cause for concern. Only in sporadic moments have we seen quality.

 

“You look at players such as Mark Kerr and Charlie Mulgrew, who are out of contract in the summer, and realise the deeper the club falls into the mire the less chance there is of these lads sticking around.

 

“It all adds up to the toughest fight of Mark’s managerial career.â€

 

McGhee called his side’s defending against the Saints ridiculous and a joke but Shearer insists Aberdeen’s perilous run is no laughing matter. He said: “I can see where Mark is coming from when he talks about complacency but there has been a fear factor at Pittodrie for a long time. The problem now is will quality players want to come to Aberdeen?

 

“If you have had a good season at Hamilton or Motherwell you are going to think twice about coming up to Pittodrie. It begs the question is Aberdeen still a big club?

 

“The budget at the Dons must be higher than Falkirk, Motherwell and St Johnstone but there is no difference between the sides.â€

 

The visit of bottom club Falkirk on Saturday has become critical for McGhee and his players. Should they lose and St Mirren beat St Johnstone and win at Hamilton, Aberdeen’s advantage will drop again to three points, increasing the pressure. Shearer hopes the Dons can maintain their place in the SPL.

 

However, he believes the directors must support their manager in the transfer market if he is to avoid a repeat of his miserable debut campaign at Pittodrie.

 

He said: “Aberdeen are hell bent on reducing the wage bill and bringing down the debt. The supporters will have to bite their tongues.

 

“I feel for Mark as I know how tough it is. When I returned to Pittodrie with Steve Paterson we were in a similar situation of needing to reduce the budget, but our problems were self-inflicted.

 

“I know Mark and Scott Leitch are putting in the hours in an attempt to turn this around and I wish them all the best.

 

“They have two options. They can accept their fate, curl up and give up, or they can come out fighting. I know which one they will be choosing. I hope they get the results they need before ripping up the squad and starting again in the summer.

 

“It has been said for many years now there is a poison at the club which needs to be ripped out but Mark needs help to do it and it can only come from the board.â€

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“I feel for Mark as I know how tough it is. When I returned to Pittodrie with Steve Paterson we were in a similar situation of needing to reduce the budget, but our problems were self-inflicted."

 

Interesting quote.

 

Anyway a lot of good albeit obvious points from one of the best strikers I have ever seen.

 

I think its a disgrace Mark Kerr is club captain who refuses to sign a new contract.

 

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Anyway a lot of good albeit obvious points from one of the best strikers I have ever seen.  :thumbsup:

 

I think its a disgrace Mark Kerr is club captain who refuses to sign a new contract.

 

You should just have stopped at "I think it's a disgrace that Mark Kerr is club captain".

 

For me he was never the right guy for the job, he just hasn't got the presence and I've never thought he was that good. The only real option for club captain amongst the current squad has to be Zander?

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