Fleetwood Town place Stephen Crainey in temporary change after Simon Grayson's exit

Stephen Crainey is in acting charge of Fleetwood Town following yesterday’s departure of Simon Grayson.

Thursday, 25th November 2021, 8:00 am

Grayson and his assistant, David Dunn, left Highbury in the wake of Tuesday night’s 3-1 loss at Oxford United, their seventh defeat in the last eight matches.

Crainey, Town’s U23 boss, will oversee matters until a new appointment is made.

A club statement read: “Crainey will take charge of the first team with immediate effect and will remain in place while the club conducts a thorough recruitment process for a new full-time manager.

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Stephen Crainey is in temporary charge at Fleetwood Town

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“The 40-year-old, who played for the club in 2014, has been at Highbury Stadium for the past four years in charge of the U23s side, playing a huge role in the development of the likes of James Hill, Jay Matete, Shayden Morris and Ged Garner.

“He will be joined by first-team coach Barry Nicholson and will take charge of the side ahead of Saturday’s trip to AFC Wimbledon.”

U18s boss Simon Wiles took interim charge after Joey Barton’s departure at the start of the year.

Grayson was then brought in at the end of January, initially until the end of last season, before penning a new contract in March.

Speaking after Town’s defeat on Tuesday, Grayson – who lost 20 of his 43 games in charge at Highbury – had said: “A few of the players have said their words in there which is good, it shows that they care about what they’re doing.

“I thought they worked hard and kept going until the very end.

“The players have to look in the morning and think ‘what should I have done, what could I have done better as individuals?’

“As a staff we will look collectively at our decision making and what we need to do but, sometimes, the teams we put out there to start a game are determined by the players you have available.

“Harrison Holgate was the best player on Saturday but couldn’t do Saturday-Tuesday for 90 minutes because of his 12-week injury lay-off.”

The Gazette understands that the club is beginning its search for a new boss and does not have a candidate lined up.

There may be a process of interviews that are needed to determine who will take charge if an outstanding candidate does not apply.

Anthony Barry was contacted the last time the role was available but he has since signed a new deal at Chelsea and works closely with manager Thomas Tuchel.

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