Something had to give at Millwall in the stalemate between chairman John Berylson and manager Ian Holloway.
Saturday’s heavy defeat to Norwich City proved to be the tipping point and first thing on Tuesday morning Holloway was sacked as manager.
Berylson had been very reluctant to sack Holloway (and reward him for failure) while Holloway at the same time was reportedly holding out for a sizeable pay-off.
It’s been an expensive decision to make but it had reached the stage where Holloway could no longer motivate the team. It was not just a question of whether we would stay up this season, but whether he was the man to rebuild the club in the division below.
Lions legend Neil Harris has been put in temporary charge of the team until the end of the season with former fellow teammate David Livermore assisting. There is even the carrot being dangled that he might get the job permanently if he fares well in the coming matches.
It’s a big ask for Harris to turn this club’s fortunes, let alone the almost impossible task of keeping us up, but he will have the support of the crowd as the joy expressed by supporters following Holloway’s sacking was overwhelming on Tuesday. Of course there was the odd dissenting voice, but they were very few and far between.
The defeat at the hands of Norwich City was yet another disgraceful display. We are now in the period of our worst home form in our 130 year, with no wins in our last 12 home matches. Things had started to turn nasty.
On Saturday Holloway had to hide in his dugout for most of the second half to avoid the boos and abuse from the crowd who were angered at watching the team succumb too easily to the Canaries.
With Holloway in charge of the club you could not see us winning another match this season. With Harris in charge we still have the same players, the majority of whom do not look good enough for this level.
But the collective lift a new manager and especially Neil Harris has given the club feels like we have a new start. We should give everything we have to try and beat Bolton away on Saturday. But anything less than a win at Bolton on Saturday and we can effectively go back to planning for League One football next season.