Salford have appointed former Blackburn boss Gary Bowyer as their new manager, less than 24 hours after sacking Richie Wellens.
Gary Neville and his fellow Class of ’92 owners were heavily criticised on Monday after axing Wellens after just over four months in charge.
But they have moved quickly to name his successor, giving Bowyer the job until the end of the season as they look to get back into the League Two play-off places.
Ex-Blackburn boss Gary Bowyer has been named Salford manager until the end of the season
Salford’s Class of ’92 ownership group (Paul Scholes and Gary Neville, left to right) were not happy with the League Two side’s promotion bid
In a club statement on Tuesday, Bowyer, who had been working at Derby and has previously had spells in charge of Blackpool and Bradford, said: I’m delighted to be here, I’ve got to first and foremost thank Wayne Rooney, Darrell Russell at Derby County for being so helpful to allow me to come here.
‘Obviously today is a case of meeting the players and setting the expectations of what we expect of them from now until the end of the season.
‘We want them to be playing aggressive football both with and without the ball, and have a right good go at these remaining 11 games.
‘We have an opportunity like everybody else in this league to try and force our way into the reckoning to try and get into the play offs and see if we can do that.’
According to The Sun, Wellens held ‘showdown talks’ with Salford co-owner and former Manchester United defender Neville before he was relieved of his duties on Monday.
The decision came just nine days after Wellens led Salford to the EFL Trophy with a win against Portsmouth on penalties at Wembley – the first trophy since the club entered the Football League – but their league form has not been good enough.
Salford sacked manager Richie Wellens after ‘showdown talks’ with Gary Neville this week
Wellens was axed just nine days after leading Salford to the EFL Trophy at Wembley Stadium
Jamie Carragher led the condemnation of Wellens’ sacking, posting an old quote from Neville in which he demanded managers be given time to succeed, along with a number of laughing emojis.
Neville’s quote read: ‘The scary thing is that a large % of people now actually support these sackings as they’ve become accustomed to it… How can you build a football team without getting 2-3 years?
‘A rule change is required to moderate sackings of managers mid-season in their first year at a club.’
Carragher also compared Neville and his other Salford co-owners to former Atletico Madrid president Jesus Gil, who was famous for showing a lack of mercy towards coaches.
Supporters were also up in arms over the treatment of Wellens, with United-themed account Red Issue tweeting Neville pictures of two articles, one where he says managers ‘need to be given time’ and another of Salford sacking Wellens.
Jamie Carragher tweeted this quote from Neville where he demanded a rule change to give managers time to work, insisting bosses need ‘2 to 3 years’ to establish their work
A United account tweeted Neville pictures of a story where he said managers ‘need to be given time to work’ and the story of Salford sacking Wellens
The Class of ’92 ownership have long been unhappy with what they saw on the pitch and co-owner Neville had held talks over their league form.
The former Manchester United defender and Sky Sports pundit sat the players and staff down before the EFL Trophy win over Portsmouth – the final for last season’s competition after it was delayed by Covid-19 – to discuss their issues.
WELLENS’ RECORD AS SALFORD BOSS
Days in charge: 138
But Neville then watched on as Salford lost more ground in the League Two promotion race against Cheltenham last weekend, going down 2-0 thanks to goals by Sean Long and Liam Sercombe.
A fiercely ambitious club, Salford are desperate to continue their climb up the domestic football pyramid and this is their second season in League Two.
They want to move out of the fourth-tier of English football and hope Bowyer can galvanise the squad going into the final 11 games of the campaign.
However, fans were unhappy with the decision to part ways with Wellens after such a short period in charge.
@SalfordWalshy posted: ‘This is getting embarrassing @GNev2! Stop f***king about changing the manger [sic] every ten mins! We won a cup last weekend and yeah struggled a little lately in the league but show faith and have patience. You want too much, too soon’ with an angry emoji.
@Jon_Harris tweeted: ‘You need to stop this obsession with getting promotion every season. No-one is going to want the job. Any new manager for you is on a hiding to nothing from day 1. You need to look more long term and give people time.’
Another fan cited Neville’s pleas with Manchester United to give Ole Gunnar Solskjaer time to work, only to not show the same faith with his own manager.
They said: ‘Next time Gary’s on Sky saying how a manager should get more time, he should take a look in the mirror first’. Another followed up with: ‘Think it’s safe to say if they were in charge at United, Ole would have been long gone by now’.
@FANDC_HUB wrote: ‘Swear @GNev2 is the bloke who always goes on about giving managers time (specifically Ole). Practice what you preach’.
@Jimi_Dyer added: ‘When will clubs realise just sacking managers all the time didn’t bring success. They need stability to get a way of playing get the team they want in. Ridiculous’.
Fans were also left angry and demanded Salford ‘stop f***ing about changing the manager!’
A club statement on Monday read: ‘Salford City Football Club has parted company with Richie Wellens by mutual consent.
‘We would like to thank Richie for his time and efforts at the Club and wish him well for the future.
‘An announcement about a new manager will be made in due course.’
Wellens, who was in charge at Salford for just 138 days, was furious with his team’s attitude after the defeat at The Jonny-Rocks Stadium on Saturday, particularly during the warm-up.