Crawley Town striker Matt Harrold admitted he was shocked to hear Monday afternoon’s news of Mark Yates’ departure.
The Reds topscorer has prospered under this season’s management, having been unhappy last season under John Gregory during a season sat mostly on the sidelines either injured or not selected while Izale McLeod was banging in the goals often as a lone striker.
He said: “It was a very a very big surprise, like a bolt out of the blue.
“Everyone’s a bit shocked and gutted we’ve lost the last six games.
“Our status status in League 2 is secure. With the constraints we’ve had, that counts as a success this season.
“I’m disappointed really - Mark’s a good manager and I have enjoyed playing for him.
“He’s probably done what the aim was, to stay in this division.”
Harrold thinks Yates was unlucky to come up against a succession of strong sides.
“It was a bad run at the wrong time; we played against some good teams.
“We didn’t know until after training this afternoon - no-one among the players really knows what is going on.
“We had a gym session, then had a meeting with the gaffer and found out later. I wish them the best of luck.
“Football is a ruthless game and it’s not nice when it happens. But it’s happened and it will happen again.
“They came in (Mark Yates and Jimmy Dack) when there was a big change at the club. “At one point we won seven out of nine home games and if we could have invested in the squad, who knows what we could have achieved?”
Yates and Dack and were understood to be returning to the club today (Tuesday) to say goodbye to staff and players.
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