No pride, no fight: departing Lodge slams players

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CHORLEY FC chairman Ken Wright vowed to take his time and get the right man as his crisis-hit club begin the search for another new manager.

It follows the decision of Paul Lodge to resign after the Magpies' 6-1 thrashing away at Harrogate Railway Athletic on Saturday.

Despite a huge fundraising effort off the field the cash-strapped club remain second-from-bottom of the Unibond League First Division.

Lodge only replaced the previous manager Shaun Teale in September but despite bringing in a host of new faces his side have won just one league game all season.

Star striker Peter Wright had to be released during Lodge's short spell as manager as part of a cost-cutting measure and the Magpies have scored just five goals in 11 league games and conceded 27.

Chorley chairman Ken Wright admitted Lodge inherited a difficult situation but said the results spoke for themselves.

"We took a hiding on Saturday and Paul resigned after the match," he said. "When you reflect on the changes that have been made by Paul when he came to the football club I believe he made too many changes all at once.

"Some of the players he signed were no better than the (ones we) got rid of. Nobody hurts more than the manager when you are losing games. Nobody can wave a magic wand and put matters right."

The Harrogate thrashing followed a 6-0 hammering at home by Alsager Town earlier in the season.

Mr Wright said Saturday's showing was the final straw for Lodge. "Against a team who were not particularly good themselves the team lacked spirit and confidence. Schoolboy errors cost us goals. The performance was ragged. It's important that we start to put some results together. We can't expect people to support the football club if we're losing every week."

Wright said there would be no panic in appointing a replacement. "We've going to take our time," he said.

Speculation about a successor is bound to include current Charnock Richard manager and ex-Magpies skipper Andy Westwell, who was heavily tipped for the job before Lodge's appointment.

In his own words:

"I was desperately disappointed I had to resign, but the players forced my hand. What I witnessed in the second half was so appalling. There was no pride from them, no fight, and that was just not acceptable for a proud club like Chorley.

"It was an embarrassment to be associated with a performance like that, and it was so bad the Harrogate players were taking the mickey out of my players. That was a disgrace to hear. They shouldn't have done that, but it was an absolute shambles."