IT’S PLAN B FOR POSH AFTER THEIR ‘EPIC FAIL’
DARREN FERGUSON admits Peterborough ha ve been forced to r evert to Plan B after they were denied an immediate r eturn to the Championship.
Posh boss Ferguson and chairman Darragh MacAnthony were busy plotting for next season before the playoff semi-f inal def eat to Orient on Tuesday.
And on the back of the 3-2 aggregate loss the London Road outfit have decided to let five players leave, including captain Tommy Rowe.
Daniel Kearns, Nat KnightPercival, Craig Alcock and Peter Grant are also among those to depar t after a season that promised much and delivered just the Football League Trophy in April.
And f ollowing a meeting with MacAnthony on Thursday, Ferguson – whose own future appears to be at the club – says they will have to cut the cloth accordingly.
“We had a Plan A and and a Plan B in place depending on what division we were in next season,” he said.
“Obviously it’s Plan B now and of course the season as a whole is now a disappointment.
“Winning the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy f inal w as a target, but our main aim was to finish in the top tw o and return to the Championship at the first attempt.
“We were too inconsistent to manage that, but we f ancied our chances in the play-offs so to miss out is a huge disappointment.”
Posh ha ve a policy of transfer-listing an y pla yer entering the f inal y ear of their contract, meaning nine further pla yers ar e up f or grabs.
Keeper Bob by Olejnik, who kept 22 cleansheets this season, Joe Day, Nicky Ajose, Nathaniel Mendez-Laing , Charlie Coulson, Michael Richens, Kane F erdinand, Tyrone Bar nett and Shaun Brisley ha ve all been told they may be sold.
But chairman MacAnthony r evealed on Twitter on Thursday that he had turned down a £2million bid f or an unnamed player, believed to be Jack Baldwin.
However, Ferguson still admits it’ s g oing to be a tough summer following relegation fr om the Championship little over 12 months ago.
“The players are hurting right now as we all are,” he added. “It’s the second successive season that w e’ve suffered heartbreak in our last game. It’s painful, but this is not the time to criticise the players or anyone else.”
Chairman MacAnthon y has vowed to car ry on and backed Ferguson, but he will take a less pr ominent role himself after declaring he is suffering from ‘burn-out’.
And he pulled no punches in his assessment of the season. “It’s been a stressful time for me and the f amily and I need a break,” MacAnthony said.
“I spent Tuesday night reviewing my own position and wondering whether I am the right man to take the club forward.
“I hardly slept a wink so while I will always continue to support the club financially I might take a bit of a back seat from day to da y affairs.
“It’s been an epic f ail this season.
“From me , the management team and the pla ying squad.We’ve all failed in some way.”
FOLLOW MY ORDERS: Darren Ferguson, left, has big changes planned
ON THE LIST: Robert Olejnik