Ferguson to call-in helping hand

Barry Ferguson could add to his backroom staff of Bob Malcolm, Malky Thomson and Tony Warner
Barry Ferguson could add to his backroom staff of Bob Malcolm, Malky Thomson and Tony Warner
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Karl Oyston and Barry Ferguson have made plans to drag Blackpool away from the Championship relegation zone.

The pair held talks on Sunday and yesterday following the disastrous 4-0 hammering at Watford.

Alex McLeish

Alex McLeish

That was Ferguson’s seventh game as stand-in manager, but he is yet to record a win and in Saturday’s after-match press conference he cast doubt over his future in the role.

But following the extensive talks, it’s believed Oyston will keep faith with the 36-year-old but could still make changes.

The Gazette understands the pair are considering bringing in a senior football figure to work alongside Ferguson and ease him into full-time management.

The plan is for a vastly experienced man to come in until the end of the season before Ferguson takes over completely in the summer.

While no-one is expected to arrive ahead of training today, it’s understood an out-of-work manager has been approached, with former Scotland managers Alex McLeish and Walter Smith both in the running.

Ferguson blasted his players following the defeat at Watford and made his thoughts more than clear when the squad returned to training yesterday.

He is expected to take charge again for Saturday’s home clash with Bournemouth, though Ferguson questioned his own future after Saturday’s collapse.

“As long as I’ve been here I’ve given everything I’ve got,” he said. “The vast majority of the boys have given everything for me but it wasn’t there on Saturday.

“If I can’t motivate a team I have a major problem. It’s better asking the players if I motivate them enough. I need to look at myself in the mirror and ask if I can really do this job. It’s a worry.”

Ferguson has been assisted so far by Malcy Thomson and Bob Malcolm, but he now looks set to turn to a more experienced assistant.

The trio watched the behind-closed-doors game against Bury yesterday (see below) before heading back to Bloomfield Road to discuss the week ahead.

But despite taking only three points from those seven games, Ferguson feels he is ready for management.

He said: “I’m not doubting myself as a manager but Saturday frightened me. I’m not happy at all.

“As a player I had hundreds of bad games but you could always bet I’d give 100 per cent. I never let my head go down and I would never give up.I’d always react and the lads didn’t give me that at Watford.”

With Pool struggling for points at the wrong end of the table, many have wondered if Ferguson may be tempted to lace up his boots again.

But he insists that won’t happen, saying: “I’ll be going for an operation on my ankle, so I won’t be back.”