Penney has gone
will he coin it in? Oldham Athletic manager Dave Penney has parted company with the club. It is a move that will please 90% of Athletic followers after a dreadful season that has resulted in the Latics just avoiding relegation. The football has been dire and attacking play has been forfeited at the expense of stopping the opposition from scoring at all costs. Admittedly, the Oldham defence has been excellent but the fair on the field has been on the whole excrutiatingly boring. The fans voted with their feet and only 2,833 fans showed up to witness the loss at home to Brentford back in March. Major predicted season-ticket loss of sales must have had a significant bearing on the dismissal of Penney and many fans had stated that they would not renew their season tickets if Mr. Penney was still in charge. Chanting for "Penney out" at recent games has gained momentum and it would have been be financial suicide if the powers that be at Boundary Park were to have ignored the pressure towards having the manager ousted. Penney took over the club just over a year ago but he never made that so important gesture of getting the fans on his side. At one stage of the season he exclaimed that he "didn't give a monkeys what the fans thought" which is a recipe for self destruction, particularly in view of the fact that Oldham Athletic have the most fickle, bigoted and expectant fans in the Football League. Simon Corney told BBC Radio Manchester, "Perhaps even Dave himself felt things were not quite right so we decided to part company. It is a hard job here, there's no doubt about it. We have had a season where we are in a division with the likes of Charlton, Leeds, Norwich, Southampton and Huddersfield. You're talking there about clubs with four or five times our budget. It's very, very difficult to compete and the fans have to realise that. Alan Hardy added, "We have had a lot of injuries but some poor performances too and we have lost quite a lot of fans because of that. I think the fans haven't been happy and they have showed that by not coming to the games." Former Oldham legend and ex-manager Andy Ritchie added his two pennorth by admitting that many supporters still hoped for a repeat of the glory years when the Latics graced the Premier League. He said, "I think they need someone with experience now it's not worked out for Dave. They do remember those times and that's right but it is going to be one hell of a journey to ever get back to that. And, being a realist as I am, I don't think they will hit that, though I think they can make the Championship. To get back to the heady days of the Premiership, you need an Uncle Jack Walker, God rest his soul. Being brutally honest, when you go to Boundary Park now it's looking tired and one of the major stands isn't there any more." Assistant manager Martin Gray will take temporary charge of the Charlton Athletic game on Saturday.
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