SOL: THIS IS NO ‘MICKEY MOUSE’ LEAGUE Macc boss blasts critics of football standard
SOL Campbell has hit back at those that have criticised the standard of football he is now managing, insisting that League Two is not ‘Mickey Mouse’ and that the division is full of talented players.
Campbell is currently in his first job as a manager after he was appointed as Macclesfield Town boss at the end of last month.
His step into management comes seven years after retiring as a player, with the former defender taking over the team that is currently bottom of the Football League.
Some of his former England team-mates have also got their first jobs as managers this season, with Frank Lampard tak- ing over at Championship side Derby County, while Steven Gerrard is working in the SPL after he was appointed Rangers boss.
It has led to some onlookers making comparisons between those two and Campbell, but the Macclesfield boss doesn’t see any issues with managing in League Two.
“It’s all about a learning process and developing and make sure that this job is right. There are some good players here, and if you look up and down the league there are teams that play good football. We want to be one of those clubs,” he said.
“It’s my first job and I want to get on with it. I want the team to play how I want to play. It’s football and we need to win games. It’s not Mickey Mouse football in League Two, it’s real football with good fans.” Campbell’s side ran out 2-0 winners at home to Crawley Town on Saturday, and he hopes that victory can now give them a boost as they look to avoid relegation.
“There were a few hairy moments but for me that will give the lads great confidence because they’ve got through the game against the wind and against a team that was pushing on, so we can build on that.
“We’re not there yet, we have to keep working and working and we can’t lose sight. We’re at the bottom and we have got to get off the bottom. We need momentum and hopefully that game will get us on the right path.”
Macclesfield have another home game on Saturday as they host Port Vale, and Campbell is well aware of how important the games in front of their own supporters will be.
“It’s about making the Moss Rose into a fortress. We’ve got to make our home a fortress and be on the front foot and impose ourselves,” he said.
“We need to make sure we’re dominant in possession, and for us to stay up and move up the league we have to win our home games and then nick some wins and draws on the road.”
Meanwhile, the boss says it is ‘absolutely bonkers’ that some of his players coming back from injury haven’t been on a fitness programme during their recovery.
After a poor start to the campaign – which has left the Silkmen bottom of the League Two table – their form has improved in recent weeks, and they have now won three out of their past four league games.
Their upturn in form has been helped by some key players returning from injury, but Campbell says more needs to be done to help those that are on the sidelines. “We have players come back from injury and it’s pleasing to see.
“A lot of the guys had their pre-season neglected, so that’s difficult if you don’t have that,” he said. “We’re trying to implement that fitness work in-between the games, so a lot of the guys who are coming back from injury haven’t had a fitness programmes, which is absolutely bonkers.
“You need that fitness programme within the season to get stronger, fitter, faster and to make sure you’re at your full capacity.
“I’ve had to be doing that, sorting the assistant, and getting them to play how I want to play, so it is what it is, we just have to get on with it.”
‘There are some good players here. It’s real football with good fans. I want the team to play how I want’