Ex-Saints staffer rips ‘disgraceful’ Ratten axing

Former St Kilda teaching advisor Ernie Merrick has slammed the board’s choice to make Brett Ratten plead for his job after sacking him as “disgraceful” and “demeaning”.

Merrick, the championship-winning former Melbourne Victory coach within the A-League, just lately left the Saints to take up a task with Football Australia, however was part of the Saints’ soccer evaluation that finally led to Ratten’s shock axing.

The 69-year-old was significantly crucial of Saints president Andrew Bassat, claiming he had already determined to half methods with Ratten previous to the completion of the evaluation.

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“It’s one of the worst (sackings) I’ve seen,” Merrick informed SEN.

“I was part of the review process the day before he was sacked, and I think the decision was already made.

“I used to be simply ticking a field to verify on my perception of his efficiency. I solely spoke with two individuals, one was the president one was the CEO.

“The CEO I thought was very fair and honest … but I’m afraid (with) Andrew Bassat I felt the decision was already made.

“I used to be so disenchanted, no matter argument was offered to me for eradicating the coach I countered.

“They say it’s a results-driven business that we’re in … but it’s really not performance-related, it’s usually someone who makes a tough call without the expertise or knowledge behind them I would say.”

Ratten met with each Bassat and Saints CEO Simon Lethlean for seven hours to plead his case after the choice had already been made to sack him.

Bassat and Lethlean claimed that the conferences had been carried out to provide Ratten an opportunity to indicate the Saints powerbrokers that they have been making the flawed choice, however the humiliating course of left Merrick enraged.

”That’s quite disgraceful really,” Merrick mentioned. “It’s demeaning, it’s not called for.”

“Being in coaching for a while you win a game, you go in the change room and everybody’s happy and everyone’s supporting you.

“But as quickly as you lose a few video games, nobody needs to know you, you aren’t getting the identical characters supporting you and you may inform that some are prepared to leap rapidly.”

Merrick helped Ratten and his staff with their preparation, matchday activities and post-match review, and was effusive in his praise of the sacked coach.

“I noticed a really, excellent coach who has wonderful relationship abilities,” Merrick said.

“He led by gaining respect by his management and his character with out putting in worry of failure or being an authoritarian.

“A couple of times I think board members consider that as being soft, but I consider it modern coaching.

“The finish outcomes actually proved that, regardless of what’s being mentioned – which amazes me, I feel his outcomes have been on monitor.”

Ratten is broadly anticipated to get replaced by former St Kilda coach Ross Lyon, who has held a number of conferences with the membership’s powerbrokers within the final week.

The return of Lyon is especially surprising given the acrimonious circumstances surrounding his departure from the club at the end of 2011 after a widely successful five-season stint.

“It’s fairly unimaginable. He wasn’t precisely a fan-favourite when he left the membership to go to the Fremantle Dockers. It’s a exceptional comeback, it truly is,” Nine’s Tony Jones told Today of Lyon’s potential return.

“It’s not past precedent. David Parkin did it at Carlton, Tony Jewell at Richmond, Bob Rose got here again at Collingwood.

“In this day and age it’s a little unusual, but Ross Lyon took the club to three grand finals, and this is a club that’s only won one premiership. So there’s unfinished business there.

“I feel it is fairly thrilling, however not all St Kilda supporters agree with that.”

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