10 October, 2011

Sad end to managerial career of proud football man:

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Proud Norn Irish man: Worthington at 1982 World Cup
"When you're country comes calling, there can only ever be one answer," - sometimes national pride just isn't enough  

               "When you're country comes calling, there can only ever be one answer,"  -  those were the words of Nigel Worthington upon being appointed Norn Iron senior international manager back in 2007.  Whilst the man who played at two World Cups showed similar passion as manager, he was never truly loved and the calls for his head have been coming for many months now.
             When the end came, it came quickly.   A swift statement released at lunchtime saying that after four-and-a-half years he was stepping down as Northern Ireland manager.

A little over 24 hours later Nigel Worthington will take charge of Northern Ireland for the last time.  Pressure on the Ballymena man had been growing over the last six months but he made sure that when the end did come it was on his terms, at a time of his choosing.

Even his biggest critics would admit he deserved that because of the way he has always conducted himself.  But his final game against Italy already promises to typify Worthington's reign.
ON HIS WAY OUT: Worthington is leaving Northern Ireland

             He will get the best available team on the pitch - injuries and suspensions as ever taking their toll on a shallow squad - and his team will never lack for endeavour, but they will ultimately fall just short.  That had been the familiar story of the Worthington years. His team won just nine games over the four-and-a-half years.  Worthington was always liked, not loved.  He was admired, not adored.  And sometimes that doesn't cut it in football.
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