Alan Irvine will not apply to replace Alex Neil as Norwich City boss
PUBLISHED: 19:58 11 March 2017 | UPDATED: 12:38 12 March 2017
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Alan Irvine is not interested in applying to replace Alex Neil as Norwich City manager but the Canaries' interim boss revealed he wants to stay at Carrow Road after City's 2-2 Championship draw against Blackburn.
Cameron Jerome’s brace earned Irvine’s side a point after playing 70 minutes, plus 10 minutes of stoppage time, with 10 men following Mitchell Dijks’ rush of blood to earn a straight red card.
Irvine confirmed he has been asked by the board to take charge of the squad for next weekend’s home game against Barnsley.
“I got a phone call late on Friday afternoon, just as I thought I was going to have a quiet Friday night, and I was simply asked to take the team for this game and the next one,” he said. “When you are asked by the board to do that, that is what you do so I agreed to that. Alex came back to the training ground after the board meeting. It was good to see him.
I didn’t really know him prior to the summer when he was on a course with him. I think he is extremely diligent with his work, very, very thorough and I believe he has a really bright future as a manager but the board have made their decision.
“I won’t apply for the job. I told Alex right from the beginning I am not a threat to him. With my age and experience that could have been regarded as such when I first came in. Even before I agreed to come I wanted that made clear. I can’t tell him that and then apply for the job.
“What my role is in the future is not in my hands. I may still be at the club in the same capacity, or a different one or I could be away. This is a great club. I made a decision to move 250 miles away from home in the eagerness to get back to the Premier League. I think this club is capable of getting back. It will be difficult but this club should be aiming for that, if not this season then next. I don’t regret my decision and if the club want me to be here I would like to be here.”
Irvine admitted there will be mixed feelings inside the club at Neil’s sudden exit.
“First of all, as a staff, and I mean the whole staff, there were some very upset people. I mean very upset,” he said. “That tells you the relationship he had with the staff. The players, right at this moment, some will be pleased and see an opportunity and others will be extremely disappointed and see suddenly where they are in the group could change. That is the same whenever a manager gets sacked.
“There was a feeling of determination and a resilience in the performance to play for so long with 10 added minutes with a man down. When we did wobble to lose the two goals in quick succession the players responded.”