Manager Derek McInnes leaves Aberdeen as eight-year spell in charge is brought to end after dismal run in the Scottish Premiership.
SunSport Online revealed on Monday night that 49 year old McInnes is on his way out of Pittodrie, with the Dons also parting company with his No2 Tony Docherty after talks with club owner Dave Cormack.
McInnes became their boss in 2013 and guided the club to a League Cup victory in 2014, and have had four second-place finishes in the Premiership with McInnes bringing in millions of pounds in transfer fees.
🚨 BREAKING 🚨
HUGE news in Scotland tonight.
Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has left the club following an eight year spell in the Granite city. pic.twitter.com/BW43YLriOY
— Switch the Ball Podcast (@switchtheball) March 8, 2021
He also showed remarkable loyalty by rejecting the chance to become Rangers boss in 2017.
However it’s understood his relationship with club chief Cormack has been strained in recent months over behind the scenes decisions.
Now they want to go down a different direction with McInnes being shown the door.
Aberdeen have won just twice in their last ten games – a run of results which has seen them score only one goal.
McInnes had vowed to battle on and take the club into a top three finish behind champions Rangers and Celtic.
But the club will now look for new boss.
Aberdeen Football Club and Manager, Derek McInnes, have agreed to part company after eight years.
The Manager and his assistant, Tony Docherty, will leave the Club with immediate effect.
AFC Chairman, Dave Cormack, said: “During his time in charge Derek raised the bar and delivered a level of consistency not seen at the Club for many years, qualifying for Europe each season, and delivering a memorable Scottish League Cup win at Celtic Park in season 2013/14 with 43,000 Dons fans in attendance.
“Clearly, results since the turn of the year have been disappointing and frustrating for everyone. Derek and I reviewed where we were and agreed that this was the right time for him to step down. The Club now has the opportunity to appoint a new manager ahead of the new season where, with a number of players out of contract, we have work to do to build a competitive squad.
“Derek and Tony leave with our thanks and gratitude for what they have achieved during their tenure. We wish them well for the future.”
Over the remaining six league games an interim team, led by Paul Sheerin and supported by Barry Robson and Neil Simpson, will strive to deliver European football with a third placed finish.
Cormack added: “The Board will start the search for the new management team immediately and has a clear timetable in place. In the meantime, we believe we have a robust interim solution for the rest of the season and the Scottish Cup which is still all to play for!”
Commenting on the announcement, Derek McInnes said: “This season has been unprecedented due to a number of factors and I am as frustrated as anyone that results haven’t been of the high standard which we set.
“My motivation to deliver success has never wavered and during my eight-year tenure my staff and I have worked hard to elevate expectations and set a minimum standard which should be demanded at a Club like Aberdeen FC.
“I would like to thank all the players who have featured in my teams over the years, my current staff and players for their efforts and all the staff behind the scenes for their hard work and endeavour. To the supporters for their continuous backing and, of course, the Board for their support during my time at the Club.”
After their game against Hamilton, he said: “We needed that first goal which helps with confidence, it forces the opposition to change. If you don’t score when you’re on top, it can come to bite you and though it didn’t in the sense that we didn’t lose the game, those are two points dropped.
“Keeping clean sheets is a hugely important part of the game, we’ve done it in half our league games now which is a fantastic return but I’m fed up of that only getting us 0-0 draws.
“We all have to take responsibility for not winning that game today.
“We have to take belief from having created chances and the fact that we’ve come a point closer to Hibs after today’s games but it feels like a missed opportunity because we should have won.
“As staff, we have to reiterate to the players that they are good enough and remind them of their abilities and what they are capable of. They need to be more instinctive, more natural in the box, but they also need to keep getting in there and trying to make things happen.
“What we saw after a couple of missed chances was that they became a wee bit more anxious.
“The only way that we resolve that is by scoring goals, winning games, finding that rhythm again and hopefully it will turn.
“I felt there were signs of improvement in the attacking play but not enough and now we go back to the training field, work with the players over these next two weeks and make the difference against Dundee United. They need to believe they will score rather than hope they will when opportunities come, but if we get our noses in front at Tannadice, I’m pretty sure we’ll see more goals starting to come for us. We need to go into the post-split games on the back of a win there, which is never easy, but is not beyond us.
“The positive is that Fraser Hornby, as things stand, will be fit for the Dundee United game and that is so important for us because he is a different type of striker. He was brought in to lead the line for us and he gives us the presence that we lacked today, especially second half. Him being added to the frontline will help us in the remaining games, no doubt about that.
“At this stage of the season, results are everything. That’s what defines your season now. Third is there for us, I firmly believe that, but we have to take more responsibility to win these kinds of games, go and make it happen. We’ve still got it all to do but that’s what we want, despite all the challenges we’ve faced this season, despite bringing money into the club by selling three key players, that would be a fantastic outcome.”
Fans reacted as the manager leaves Aberdeen after eight-year spell in charge…
@craigbarlow80: New Celtic manager apparently
@pieandbov: HANDS OFF GOODY!
@Fraser21_s: Gerrards no gonna have room on his mantle piece for all these managers he is collecting
@danielleagnewww: @CelticFC don’t even think about giving derek mcinnes the job
@muncherdave: Bye Derek McInnes. Cheers for the early years, but this was overdue. Stand Free #aberdeenfc
@ATcfc88: The Gerrard effect 🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧
@Arran_98: Holy shit finally
@jhendy_10: I’ve said for Months that Dave Cormack is a banger. But this has to be his banger-iest move yet. He’s forced out Aberdeen’s best manager since Alex Ferguson and they will definitely be the worse off for it.
@TattieMash: What a season 😂🇬🇧
@louise_ton22: Make it happen @Morton_FC
@broxburnjambo: Seems like strange timing, must have someone already lined up.
@ImF55linit: So glad McInnes never ended up as our Manager… I guess it shouldn’t be too costly for Aberdeen to find a Manager that only needs paid for 4 games a season
@rangersnt: How different things could have been at Rangers if we signed him , we made the right decision in the end and by fuck how happy i am at that decision, Stevie G forever a Rangers Legend .
@pwmcomms: Just seen that Aberdeen have parted company with Derek McInnes. I will let Aberdeen fans comment on his reign but from my point of view Derek is always easy to approach and work with. Wish him well on his next adventure.
@RangersSpares__: They should’ve just done a straight swap instead of sacking Lennon and McInnes for them to take each other’s place 😂😂😂
@Sneddon0472: Neil Lennon to Aberdeen
@KevinRohan3: No denying that Derek McInnes made us fall back in love with our team when he arrived. The memories of Parkred, Sociedad, Rijeka (first time) and Groningen will live with me forever…
@Raymondo1903: Derek McInnes – thank you for the 8 years of commitment to our club!! It wasn’t an easy job having to replace your best players every season … We had some good times under your reign but now is the right time for a change… All the best & Stand Free !!
@RyanCryle: Shouldn’t be forgotten Derek McInnes gave my generation of Dons fans, who had only known misery, one of the best days of our lives in 2014, and I really thought we were going to go one better in 2017.
@ShonaDuthie4: Am I sad it ended this way? Yep. He brought us our first cup in years but it felt as though it was stale, stagnated and neither party were particularly happy at the end. Time for a change sadly. Wish Derek McInnes all the best. #Aberdeen #StandFree
For me, I can understand the Aberdeen decision to sack Derek McInnes after fan revolt leading to harrowing scenes such as this.
— CMOnTheRocks (@CMontheRocks) March 8, 2021