Nigel Pearson: From East Riding to East Midlands?
If he’s in it for the money he’ll go to Leicester, where he can expect to be sacked later this season if they don’t win promotion or some time next season if they do go up and suddenly find out the hard way how many millions you need to be as competitive as Wigan Athletic. But he’ll get a decent pay-off.
Right-thinking Hull fans want Pearson to stay but inevitably thoughts turn to a possible successor. The brigade who have been badgering Pearson will want Sven, Mark Hughes, Alan Curbishley, Roy Keane or some other big name who wouldn’t come here and who we shouldn’t want. Might as well throw in George Graham and Graeme Souness as well. These are the same fans who thought we were going to sign Ruud van Nistelrooy because he occasionally used to catch the ferry from Hull for trips back to Holland.
I’d take a punt on Shaun O’Driscoll. A year ago Doncaster Rovers were pushing for the top six and playing some of the best football in the division. Then injuries set in and the slide began, resulting in O’Driscoll getting the boot in bizarre circumstances which have effectively left a once-proud football club being run by an agent.
I had a long chat with O’Driscoll a month ago at Leaders In Football and it became clear that he paid the price for the club’s limited resources. Most of the injuries were suffered during matches, home games on a pitch that is used regularly by Rovers, the women’s team, a rugby league team, seemingly anyone who happens to be passing and fancies a kick-about. This season the local council held a pop concert on the pitch five days before the first game.
I was fascinated by the amount of research O’Driscoll and his backroom staff conducted into occurrence of injuries, and I shared his sadness that most of them seemed to result from circumstances about which he could do nothing.
We discussed his next move and it became clear he couldn’t go for the jobs at Nottingham Forest or Bristol City even if he wanted to because he was still tied to Donny even though they didn’t want him any more. Whether the situation has changed I would doubt, simply because he hasn’t been linked to jobs elsewhere. But if O’Driscoll is available I’d take him, although not before moving heaven and earth to try and keep Nigel Pearson.