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Assistant manager sacked by Notts County over ‘inappropriate comment’ to player

Assistant manager Maurice Ross has been sacked by Notts County over an ‘inappropriate comment’ he made to a player recently.

The former Motherwell coach, who was also a player at Wolves, Rangers and Millwall, has left his role as at the Magpies after less than two months.

He departs the club as they sit 10th in the National League table, taking 54 points from 25 games played with seven games remaining.

The club posted on their club website, confirming that Ross had left. A short statement read: “Assistant head coach Maurice Ross has this afternoon left the club with immediate effect.

“We will be making no further comment.”

The Daily Record report Ross as apologising for the comment. He said: “During Saturday’s match at Altrincham, I made an ill-judged comment to a member of our playing staff which has led to my departure from the club.

“I deeply regret the comment, which is not a reflection of the type of person I am, and would like to place on record my apologies to the player in question for the upset I have caused. While it was said in the heat of the moment with no malice intended, it was nevertheless unacceptable and I’m devastated by the impact it’s caused.

“I would also like to apologise to the club’s board of directors, supporters & Ian Burchnall, all of whom I have enjoyed working with immensely. The club have handled today’s events impeccably and everyone at Meadow Lane has my full support for the rest of the season and beyond.

“I will be taking some time to reflect on my actions and learn from this experience before continuing my coaching journey.”

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It comes after he was dealt with ‘privately’ by Motherwell after Celtic and St Mirren were left enraged by comments he made back in October 2020.

At the time of being a Fir Park first-team coach, he sparked unhappy responses from Celtic, St Mirren and Kilmarnock following his guest appearance on BBC Radio Scotland’s Sportsound programme.

Stephen Robinson said: “I just dealt privately with the matter and any issue that’s been going on this week in any shape or form I have dealt with privately, and that’s the way it will remain. I conduct my business in private.

“Any issue I have dealt with and it’s over now and we are concentrating fully on football matches. We haven’t had one for a long time.”

Then-Celtic boss Neil Lennon revealed Robinson had “apologised profusely” following his coach’s analysis of Rangers’ Parkhead win, while the Motherwell boss has also spoken to St Mirren boss Jim Goodwin.

Among other things, ex-Rangers defender Ross claimed Celtic’s starting line-up was the weakest he had seen in 20 years, queried how long it took Leigh Griffiths to get fit, questioned Celtic’s recruitment policy and claimed their understanding of their 3-5-2 formation was “very basic”.

After Motherwell had games at Kilmarnock and St Mirren postponed because of Covid-19 outbreaks among their opponents, Ross claimed clubs could theoretically use the pandemic to get matches postponed if it suited them.

St Mirren chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick wrote to Fir Park counterpart Alan Burrows to express his disappointment at the “unfortunate and unhelpful” comments while then-Kilmarnock boss Alex Dyer claimed “there’s no need to make headlines”.

With the assistant manager sacked by Notts County over an ‘inappropriate comment’ made to a player, fans reacted over on social media…

@bigdaz_rigley: No further comment he’s obviously upset someone or probably twatted someone cos they’re not doing as they are told.

@mgsevs: Quite simply FFS. How can we be imploding this fast from top 5 with games in hand, one game from Wembley and now this… Utter joke club

@BirdyP63: Could it be that we got shut of the person that has been holding it all together for s couple of years – just a suggestion

@neilmetcalf69: Good that’ll make the questions go away

@NottsCounty1991: Well totally unexpected! He’s just gave a great interview other day and filled many with great hope and now this

@jacquimee: Say what??? Well that didn’t last long. Is Burchnall safe? What is happening at ML.. More exciting than LOD. 🤣

@stema_steve: Clubs become a joke again, unless the guy has abused someone or told a few the truth something is soooo wrong.

@CraigHumf3: Get rid of the other muppet too

@ITWASCOMINGHOME: That didn’t last long. Wtf is going on at Notts recently?

@roweypw: @Official_NCFC yet again a complete farce of a club. Time for the owners to show their face again.

@djnoel8: One down one to go. Usually though they both go at the same time

@jmetrcktt: Ardley should have never gone. Stupid time to sack him after building a team. Deserve to be where they are

@ColinMetcalf3: It’s a total shambles, the club really has to come out and answer fans questions or they are in real risk of losing them. Questions on recruitment appointments and the plans all need answering or it will turn very toxic. I’m sick of the constant pantomime at notts.

@Dazzler39: It’s Notts County. Nothing should surprise us anymore!

@VinnieVonStarr1: Strange thing to happen. I had more faith in him than I do Ian Burchnall. He was always the one that seemed to talk more sense and was bellowing instructions from the touchline whilst IB just stood with his arms folded looking confused.

@DanWestwell: WTF?!??

@Fraser1874: Probably of no consequence to Notts fans but Maurice Ross is a particularly odd individual

@safetywatto: What the actual fuck!

@neil003: Wonder if he has dared to speak some home truths to some snowflake footballer.

@chriskew_1: Ah FFS. I’m really jaded by us sacking managerial staff. Can we have a club policy of not sacking any manager who hasn’t taken us to relegation.

@NottsCounty1991: WTAF?

@Scott_Thraves: Now Burchnall please.

@dkh_ncfc: Hopefully he told the players how shit they were

@dharvey4: Hard to believe Coventry played Notts in the playoffs just 3 years ago.

@Andrewk1978: We are currently even by our own standard, well words fail me. Objectively we were playing pretty crap but 4th, games in hand, 4 unbeaten, a semi of cup. So sack manger as I think phrase was should be doing better”, not personally convinced things have got better……

@steviefreez1: Maybe the owners have asked what the hells going on and Mo was hung out to dry

@achandler2409: I think it’s time the OWNERS came to the table and told us what is going on

@AndrewJames0511: Would be great to know what due dilligence was done over these appointments. Burchnall came in on a ticket of “working with Graham Potter”. On Saturday, Potter told me he didnt know IB very well, now this. Its quite disturbing.

@HarveyHough: What the hell is going on behind the scenes at the club! Thought these owners were here to provide some form of stability and they have thrown this season out of the window

@hgiles1976: And the merry go round continues it’s about time the owners came out and spoke to us loyal fans something is not sitting right with me and I am very worried about what is going on at the club I love

@adamjamesred: In all the years I’ve supported Notts, I can’t recall us sacking an assistant manager. Plenty of assistants have left with managers, but never just an assistant on their own. Something pretty big must have kicked off behind the scenes for the club to take this action.

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