Shrews Chief Executive "Disappointed" By Town's "Illegal Approach" for Hurst
Tuesday, 29th May 2018 10:02
Shrewsbury chief executive Brian Caldwell has hit out at Town for what he says was an “illegal approach” for his club’s manager Paul Hurst. Caldwell says he expects Hurst’s move to the Blues is now a fait accompli with his assistant Chris Doig set to join him at Portman Road.
In a lengthy interview with BBC Radio Shropshire, Caldwell made his frustrations known and outlined how events unfolded yesterday.
“I got a call yesterday morning at 10 to 10 from Paul’s agent, which was a bit of a surprise to be honest with you, saying that he’s had an approach from Ipswich wanting to speak to him,” he said.
“In the meantime, by 10 to 10, he’d spoken to Paul and Paul had intimated that he would like to talk to Ipswich.
“We found out after that and that’s actually, I’ve got be honest, that’s actually an illegal approach.”
Caldwell admits the news came as no shock in the wake of Sunday’s League One play-off defeat to Rotherham and with the Town move having been expected for some while, TWTD having reported that talks following the play-off final were likely to be a formality.
“I don’t think it was a surprise,” he added. “I think we were all bracing ourselves because of all the speculation. I’ve had a running commentary from some of the papers over what’s been happening at Ipswich in the last couple of weeks.
“While I’m not saying it’s a surprise, it’s still disappointing less than 24 hours after what had happened on Sunday and to get a call from the agent rather than Ipswich themselves was probably even more disappointing because I just don’t think that’s the right way to go about it.”
Could Hurst have been persuaded to stay with the Shrews? “I think Paul is probably the only one who could answer that but my personal feeling is that it’s been on the cards for the last couple of weeks no matter what, that’s my own personal feeling.”
He added: “I just felt at the time that perhaps Ipswich came, it’s a bigger club than Shrewsbury let’s not be kidded, and that’s no disrespect to us.
“There’ll always be a bit more money involved in it no matter what, so he obviously wanted to talk to them yesterday morning when I got the call from his agent.
“Things then moved on from there. I had a couple of calls with their owner at Ipswich [Marcus Evans], who straight away seemed to know that Chris Doig (pictured above) was going as well.
“The approach has been for the two of them, which surprised me a wee bit as well because I didn’t actually expect them to know if they haven’t actually spoken to them that he would want Chris Doig as the assistant, but the whole compensation package involves the two of them.”
Caldwell says Hurst’s switch to the Blues is now just a formality: “Basically, I’m sure the contract is probably in place already. It’s just a bit of a waiting game now until we get that final confirmation from Ipswich that everything’s been agreed.”
He says the clubs hadn’t planned to release the news of Town’s approach last night, after compensation had been agreed, but they became aware it was going to leak.
While Doig is joining Hurst at Town, goalkeeper-coach Danny Coyne isn’t part of the deal, the former Wales international having discovered the news from Twitter.
Caldwell admits he’s not been pleased with the manner of Hurst's exit and made that known to the Blues.
“I’ve got to say I was a disappointed and I told Ipswich that yesterday,” he said. “I’m disappointed just with the way it’s panned out.
“I do believe, I’ve got to say, that in the last couple of weeks there’s probably been stuff going on behind the scenes.
“Again, I get football, in football there’s a lot of things behind the scenes and a lot of things behind people’s backs, but sometimes you’re looking for a bit of loyalty.
“I always treat everybody the way I would [like to be treated] myself and if something came in for me personally I would be straight. If there’s been something going on behind the scenes for the last couple of weeks that would be disappointing.”
Does he feel Hurst hasn’t been as open as he might have been? “I think it’s difficult and he’s been in a difficult position over the last couple of weeks if there has been anything going on.
"The last thing he wants to do as admit something has been going on behind the scenes because potentially it would be an illegal approach.
“Even that yesterday morning first thing, taking a call from the agent rather than Ipswich, was again disappointing.
“But that’s football for you, you just have to get on with it and we just have to move on to the next step. We’re all used to it, we’ve all got experience of it, so we take it on the chin and move on.”
As TWTD reported last night, Hurst, who is currently on holiday in Dubai, could be formally appointed the new Town boss as soon as today.
Photos: Action Images/TWTD
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