RUN-DOWN ON PLAYERS
the decision not to take the team. It was very much my own decision and a very hard one.
“I never read his statement. I don’t read anything like that. He has his opinions, the fans have their opinions and the players have theirs.
“I invited Phil round to talk in depth about the squad and each individual player. I wanted him to know my thoughts.
“People will make their own assessment of my time at the club, but I left them heading to the final and I firmly do believe we would have been promoted if it hadn’t been for injuries.”
Sturrock left the Roots Hall side lying ninth in the table, six points adrift of seventh place after missing out in the play-off semi-finals last season to today’s Wembley opponents Crewe.
But the former Scotland international says that he is not ready to retire and fancies another crack at football management. “There was all sorts of things going through my mind about what I was going to do, but after a long thought I’m totally committed to getting another job in the game,” he added.
“It obviously has to be the right one, but I want it to be as soon as possible.
“I’d worked very hard over the past three years to keep the team up first and foremost and in different circumstances I’m sure that we would have gone up with an 83point total last year.”