SLADE HEAVE-O NOT FOR HEARN
FORMER Leyton Orient owner Barry Hearn says he would give under-pressure manager Russell Slade another couple of months to turn the team around – as new owner Francesco Becchetti sharpens his axe.
Slade, who led the O’s to the play-off final last term before his new Italian boss bankrolled the summer signing of relative big names including Jobi McAnuff and Darius Henderson, earned a stay of execution with the midweek draw at Notts County.
Hearn, who recently sold his 90 per cent stake to Becchetti, told The FLP: “The club has been a beneficiary of fantastic service from Russell, who is an outstanding manager and, if it was up to me, I would give him until Christmas to work with the players that have come in and ensure they adapt, because the results will improve.
“That’s easy for me to say though, because I’m not paying the bills. I’m just a fan now.
“There’s no such thing as a free lunch.What he has achieved with Leyton Orient in the past is irrelevant to the new owner. He wants results.
“Perhaps they are expecting too much too soon, but football is a results business and I can understand their point of view.
“Not one single inch of me wishes I was still involved. I’m possibly the happiest exchairman around. Football has changed so much over the last ten or 20 years and I’m afraid I’m probably a bit of a dinosaur.”
Slade had been told he would lose his job if his side had lost at Meadow Lane, much to the displeasure of the supporters.
But Hearn believes those same fans had been crying out for investment in the club in recent times and should be careful what they wish for.
“They need to wake up and smell the coffee, this is the way they wanted it,” he added. “Francesco Becchetti is doing what every fan has asked for. He has come in and pumped big money into the club, so it is no wonder he is looking for results.”
ON WAY OUT? Slade