Bristol Rovers has relieved Ian Atkins of his managerial responsibilities at the club. Speaking on Radio Bristol a club director revealed that Atkins had been informed on Wednesday that his contract would not be renewed at the end of the season, and then told after training today that he was no longer First Team Manager.
Atkins, a man whose reputation as a football manager comes almost entirely through his own self-publicity and selectivity of memory, has never endeared himself to Yeovil fans, dating back to the F.A. Cup meeting with his then club Northampton Town in 1998, which The Glovers won 2-0. But his stock hit an all time low when his behaviour in the October 19th 2004 match between Bristol Rovers and Yeovil Town at the Memorial Stadium led to three separate charges being levied against him by the Football Association. Atkins spent several weeks spreading disinformation and insinuations through the local media whilst trumpeting that he would fight the charges against him to the bitter end. He got the hearing delayed, supposedly to further prepare his defence, and at the end of all this............ pleaded guilty. Even then he couldn't leave it alone, asserting in the Bristol Evening Post that he couldn't comment further because the police were pursuing further inquiries. Oddly only a few days before an unidentified source - who wouldn't have been Atkins, oh no not at all - had claimed the police were investigating individuals from Yeovil Town FC and considering charges. This was of course completely untrue as the police subsequently made clear : they were investigating no one and nothing. A mysterious illness - chicken flu perhaps - struck Atkins down for the return at Huish Park, and he did not show up.
Before Atkins gets to work on promoting his own version of his achievements at Bristol Rovers we'd better get his real stats at The Gas on record : won 31%, lost 31%, drawn 38%.
So let's er, randomly choose a good manager for comparison : won 52%, lost 27%, drawn 21%. And not a whinging whining excuse along the way. Give Gary a ring, Ian, and ask how it should be done.
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