Out with the old, in with the new

PUBLISHED: 16:38 16 December 2006 | UPDATED: 09:54 14 September 2010

I've got that April feeling. You know the one - where your team isn't going to make the play-offs but on the other hand is unlikely to get relegated.

You just want to get the season over and done with, refresh and regroup and look forward to August.

I've got that April feeling. You know the one - where your team isn't going to make the play-offs but on the other hand is unlikely to get relegated.

You just want to get the season over and done with, refresh and regroup and look forward to August. Trouble is, it is only December. We are only halfway through.

Of course I could be completely wrong. City could now embark on a winning run, string a few results together and reach the FA Cup final into the bargain. I would love that.

Unfortunately what I see and hear tells me otherwise. On the pitch I see a team that is devoid of ideas, confidence and ability. A team that seems unable to follow simple instructiuons and is being paid lots of money.

Off the pitch I hear that despite the income streams and the prudence, there is very little money to spend on replacements.

Although Peter Grant has retained the previous backroom staff and is working with the same squad, changing a manager is a particularly turbulent time for all concerned with major upheavals throughout the club. He is still in his settling in period, is new to the managing game and has inevitably made mistakes. He now has to look at and evaluate what he has inherited.

It's a bit like moving house really. You judge what would fit in nicely in your new plans and what needs to go. Time to declutter your life.

Out of the door should go a combination of unwanted poor quality items assembled at great expense by the previous incumbent.

These are sadly never going to be of any use, and you have to be strong and pop them into the skip. There's no place for nostalgia either and on to eBay should go some dear old favourites.

I am going to sound like my mum here, but certain players seem more worried about their hairstyles these days than performances on the pitch. And what's with the gloves?

Can you imagine Duncan Forbes running out in October sporting a trendy pair to keep his little hands warm?

The time has come I'm afraid to be ruthless. And replacements? Well, if, as I suspect, other clubs dont want the aforementioned players, new players must be found from what is a small kitty. Very little money is available to the manager unless he sells.

I would suggest looking around the lower leagues for bargain basement players. There is nothing wrong with doing this and it has worked for City in the past.

Ted MacDougall, Phil Boyer and Colin Sullivan spring to mind and many more besides. Thierry Henry began his career at FC Versailles. The next one is out there somewhere. And often these players are hungrier too, something this City side is crying out for. No more overpaid Premiership cast-offs please.

If the rest of this season is to be a transition phase, then when we regroup in August is the time to judge the new manager.

The old manager famously said: “Judge me on the team I build not the team I inherited.” We did Nigel. The same should apply to the new manager.

The size of his task is directly proportional to the length of time Nigel Worthington was retained beyond his sell by date, and to the money he wasted during that period.

Grant has a mountain to climb. He can't do it overnight.

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