Karren and the David’s (Gold and Sullivan) are notoriously squeamish when it comes to sacking managers. In their 18 years in football they have sacked only two managers – Barry Fry and Trevor Francis.
It’s not like the past 18 years have been an unqualified success for Birmingham City and latterly West Ham, but as Chief Executive and owners Brady, Gold and Sullivan have shown more reticence towards dismissing managers than most of their professional counterparts.
The twice they have wielded the axe has been after three and five year tenures.
During that time largely spent running Birmingham they actually presided over more relegations (3) than managerial sackings – and not after a single relegation was the manager who took them down dismissed.
The loyalty they have shown to their managers has by and large been rewarded; after every relegation Birmingham bounced back the very next season.
However, the press rumours from the weekend were so ubiquitous and strong that it’s hard not to assume Martin O’Neill had been approached. Gold and Sullivan may have been willing to change horses but they do not like the uncertainty that comes from sacking a manager without having a succession plan in place. Or
Grant has been emasculated but their bundled manoeuvres to try and bring in O’Neill has made the West Ham job toxic to all but the most mercenary of managers (and he’s currently working for Newcastle anyway).
West Ham will stay the course till the end of the campaign with Grant, who now exists in the public eye as a managerial rescue pet – mistreated by every owner he ever had.