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Former Newcastle player says Derek McInnes showed his ‘ambition’ when turning down Sunderland

4 years ago

It was a major surprise when Derek McInnes turned down Sunderland after being interviewed for the managerial vacancy.

The Aberdeen boss had been given permission to speak to Sunderland and spoke positively about the Wearside club, only to then get cold feet and decline their offer.

It is usually seen as a massive step up going from the Scottish Premier League to a Championship club with hopes of getting into the Premier League.

Only last December, Robbie Neilson left Hearts when they were second in the league, seeing it as a career progression to join League One MK Dons who were fighting relegation to League Two!

Even Neil Lennon who had won numerous trophies with Celtic and left them as champions, found his next job was with Championship Bolton who were fighting relegation to League One when he joined them.

So no wonder Sunderland fans were left humiliated when Derek McInnes preferred to stay in what is a very poor Scottish Premier League, especially when he would have been paid three times as much if moving to the Stadium of Light.

The dismal state of Scottish football means that Celtic are guaranteed a stroll to the title and whilst Aberdeen proved best of the rest, the fact they were 30 points behind the champions emphasises that nothing is going to change.

Stephen Glass was a stylish winger who had no luck with injuries, a £650,000 signing for Kenny Dalglish in March 1998 from Abersdeen, then playing under Ruud Gullit, before eventually seeing his time end at Newcastle under Sir Bobby Robson in summer 2001 and moving on to Watford.

Glass thinks Derek McInnes has shown ‘ambition’ by turning down the Mackems.

Stephen Glass talking to the Sunday Post:

“It shows you what the club (Aberdeen) has got…but it shows you Derek’s ambition as well.

“Not to jump at the first opportunity is rare these days.

“Obviously he has spoken to Sunderland, heard what they had to say, what they would offer him financially, then decided to say no to them.

“For whatever reason, he hasn’t liked the whole package and felt he was better off staying at Aberdeen.

“That suggests to me that he believes he can get a better offer, he has certainly earned the right to believe that.

“You would imagine he has been given assurances that he will be backed financially at Aberdeen.

“He clearly believes that he can continue to get improvements under those circumstances, which, again, shows his ambition.

“Now it’s about finding replacements for some of the guys that have gone and I think he can do it successfully.

“It’s there for Derek to have a real go at it.

“Not to go and splash crazy money around, but to use the increased funds he does have wisely.”


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