Bryan Gunn critical of David McNally

Former Norwich City manager Bryan Gunn has criticised chief executive David McNally for going public on his reasons for sacking him just two games into the new season.

Former Norwich City manager Bryan Gunn has criticised chief executive David McNally for going public on his reasons for sacking him just two games into the new season.

Gunn, who returned to the spotlight as a panelist for Sky's coverage of City's 2-1 defeat at Leeds on Tuesday night, said he was disappointed to read McNally's comments at a fans forum, after keeping a "dignified silence" on the matter himself.

The City chief told fans at a Norwich City Independent Supporters Association gathering that Gunn had been shown the door because something was "fundamentally wrong" at Carrow Road and not just because the Canaries had been humiliated 7-1 at home by Colchester on the opening day of the season.

Without going into details McNally then went on to criticise the former City goalkeeper's preparations for the new season and individual matches as well as his post match analysis and "pre-game behaviour".


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Gunn didn't answer those claims on live television - but he made it abundantly clear that he was less than enamoured with the comments.

"Out of respect to the club, I've not gone to the press, I have not said anything," he said. "I have tried to be as dignified about the situation as possible. I think that is the way I will remain. David McNally chose to say something in the press. I was disappointed with that and, as I said, disappointed with the way things have been handled.

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"But I am looking to the future and hopefully there will be some new opportunities out there for me.

"I am being positive about it and I have got to look to the future. Norwich City are getting on with their job and good luck to the club in their quest to get back into the Championship."

Gunn, who was watching a City match live for the first time since his August exit, was asked how he thought the Canaries would be faring right now had they stuck with him rather than turning to Paul Lambert, who had guided the side to a run of just one defeat in nine League One fixtures before the heartbreaking 2-1 reverse at Elland Road.

"I think we would have been there or thereabouts," he said. "The plan was to be competitive in this league, and certainly to be challenging.

"I was given the opportunity to bring in a lot of players during the summer. Those players who were added to the squad, together with the young players coming through, would certainly have given us a good chance of getting out of this division. It's good to see that the results have proved that."

After the game Sky presenter David Jones revealed how Gunn had been on his feet when his former side looked like scoring and the former boss, who had admitted earlier that he still wondered what might have been, confirmed he was right behind the men in yellow and green.

"I was actually hoping to be standing on the touchline tonight but I am delighted to have been invited along by Sky," he remarked.

"You don't spend 22 years at a club without having feelings for it. Obviously it was a big disappointment the way it all finished but I am still a fan. The fans were magnificent again tonight and I do hope the club does well in the league this season."

The Canaries are nine points adrift of an automatic promotion position after Fraser Forster's blunder gifted Jermaine Beckford an injury time winner for Leeds but Gunn feels they still have a realistic chance of finishing in the top two.

Asked about the possibility, he commented: "I wouldn't discount that. The teams in the top six at the moment deserve to be there and I also like the look of Huddersfield, who are fairly strong and have got a chance to push up there as well. There are also the perennials like Millwall and Southend. It is a very competitive league this season and I am sure Norwich will be very happy with the position they are in after 13 games and have still got the potential to be in that top two come the end of the season."

Gunn also had words of sympathy for the City players in general - and his fellow keeper Forster in particular.

"He (Paul Lambert) is right to say that Norwich were the better team on the night. They will be gutted in the dressing room," he said. "We've seen it ourselves that they do pass the ball well. But they probably didn't create as many chances as Leeds in the second half and they probably paid the price for that. There was only one save that (substitute goalkeeper) Kasper Ankergren had to make, from a Grant Holt shot. They didn't put him under enough pressure.

"Fraser made some great saves in the second half and I really feel for him. He is a great propsect and he will be dejected tonight. But he needs to get back on the training ground tomorrow, work hard and hopefully stay in the team for Saturday's match against Swindon. As a young goalkeeper he has got to bounce back from that and learn from the mistake. And so have the defenders because they turned their back on him (for the goal) and Jermaine Beckford was alive to it, kept his eye on the ball and finished it."

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