Football: Gray shocks Everton by rejecting job
Tuesday 24 June 1997
The former Scottish international striker, celebrated for his straight opinions as a pundit, left Everton feeling in the need of an action replay of the events of the past few days.
Instead of being installed as the new Everton manager at the club's scheduled press conference, Gray was explaining his reasons for a baffling change of mind. "In my heart I wanted to manage Everton, in many ways it would have been the realisation of a dream," he said. "But increasingly, over the weekend, my head has been telling me different things."
"Maybe I got a little carried away with all the speculation, and to take the job and then let the supporters down would have been too much to bear," Gray added.
Gray's decision, broken to the club by his agent, came as a complete shock to Everton, who believed they had finally found someone keen to be their manager. The strongminded Scot even told the club chairman, Peter Johnson, that he wanted Richard Money, Manchester City's coach, and Kenny Hibbitt, Cardiff City's director of football, as his management team. That closed the door on the other half of Johnson's proposed dream ticket - Howard Kendall, currently Sheffield United's manager.
Gray also went to the extent of telling Everton who he planned to buy, headed by Aston Villa's Dwight Yorke, and leaked the hit-list to several newspapers. Now the news has left Everton stunned and still seeking a saviour.
Kendall, much as he loves his old club, surely has too much pride to answer any call now. Bobby Robson will once more be linked with the job. His future at Barcelona is in doubt, despite his claims that he will remain in Spain.
"I am aghast that the man has behaved like this. It is quite difficult to believe and to take in," Johnson said. "Andy Gray applied for the job, came to an interview with us and then went straight out from the interview and started talking about the job. We have been nothing other than the totally wronged party in this episode. What has happened has shocked me. You can gather I'm very upset."
There was no such drama at The Dell, where Dave Jones, as expected, was confirmed as the new manager of Southampton.
Jones has agreed a four-year contract worth pounds 200,000-a-year to take over from Graeme Souness, who resigned last month. He brings his assistant, John Sainty, with him from Stockport County, who will collect pounds 200,000 in compensation for losing their managerial team.
Phil Boersma, who had been No 2 to Souness at The Dell, will join his old boss at Torino, the Italian Serie B club who named Souness as their new coach last week. There is no role at the Saints, however, for their former manager Lawrie McMenemy, who quit as director of football when Souness resigned but then asked for his job back.
Celtic's new general manager is Jock Brown, a 51-year-old lawyer and TV commentator who is the brother of the Scotland coach, Craig Brown. He will have responsibility for transfer dealings and contracts, and will help the club find a new head coach.
Sheffield United have spent pounds 750,000 to sign the Greek right wing-back, Vassilis Borbokis, from AEK Athens on a three-year contract. Crystal Palace have offered a trial to the Israeli international Itzhak Zohar, a pounds 1m-rated 26-year-old midfielder with the Israeli champions, Beitar Jerusalem.
Brighton and Hove Albion are confident they can come up with the pounds 500,000 bond demanded by the Football League to safeguard the club's future. The original deadline to pay the bond to secure their place in the League was last Friday, but legal difficulties led to a delay and the League approved an extension until this week.
Latest in Sport
QPR 1 Arsenal 2: Arsene Wenger praises 'mental strength' of strikers Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud in win over QPR
Newcastle 0 Manchester United 1: Louis van Gaal describes performance as 'maybe our best match of the season'
Cristiano Ronaldo: Real Madrid superstar 'sends his hair stylist to look after his waxwork once a month'
Newcastle vs Manchester United match report: Ashley Young scores late winner as Angel Di Maria fails to shine yet again
Brooklyn Beckham to be released: Why Arsenal could regret letting David Beckham's son depart
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 3 Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway amid dense fog
- 4 Penis size: Study revealing 'what's normal' sends international media into meltdown
- 5 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm are focussed on assis...
£7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A vacancy has arisen for a General Processor ...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...