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Managerial axing nearly set off players’ revolt at Thurlow Nunn First Division Great Yarmouth Town

06:50 08 February 2014

Mike Derbyshire, front, with Mike Hepburn. Picture: James Bass.

Mike Derbyshire, front, with Mike Hepburn. Picture: James Bass.

Archant Norfolk © 2013

Angry players at Great Yarmouth Town considered going on strike after their manager was fired.

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Mike Derbyshire was axed by interim chairman Len Beresford on Monday in a decision which stunned figures across the region’s non-league scene, none more so than the devastated footballers who ply their trade for the Bloaters.

A statement issued by the players, read out during BBC Radio Norfolk’s ‘local report’ with Nick Bowler last night, said: “As players we would like to take this opportunity to say how disappointed and angry we are at the committee’s recent decision to sack our manager Mike Derbyshire. We feel the decision was made too quickly, was not justified and more importantly we do not believe all committee members were appropriately consulted.

“Mike was a popular manager who had made massive progress in his short time at the club whilst always trying to play a good style of football. He was a true gent both on the sidelines and off the pitch. We wish him well in the future. Yarmouth’s loss will definitely be another club’s gain. We would also like to thank his number two Bob Hepburn and the rest of Mike’s coaching team.

“The most obvious thing we could of done as players was to strike. But we have decided to leave the bad PR stunts to the board, stick together, play for each other and the town. The continued support from the local community, and everyone in local football is needed by the team now more then ever.”

Hepburn was also sacked this week while coaches Rob MacKechnie and Clayton Buckenham are understood to have resigned. Reserve boss Lee Hackleton will take charge of Yarmouth for their First Division Knockout Cup quarter-final at Stowmarket today.

Derbyshire, who took charge of Town in September 2011, said he was “overwhelmed” by the support he has received from his players and was “very proud of them for sticking together”.

In other news, a host of Premier Division and First Division games, including matches involving Norwich United and Thetford, have already fallen foul of the wet weather. Many more were in doubt overnight.

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