Sunday, January 27, 2008
Jewell hits out after FA Cup humbling
Manager Paul Jewell admitted Derby 'deserve criticism' after their 4-1 FA
Cup fourth-round defeat at home to Preston ensured their dismal campaign reached a new low.
Despite their side being cut adrift at the bottom of the Barclays Premier
League for much of the season, Rams supporters have, on the whole, loyally stood
by their side, but their patience finally snapped at Pride Park yesterday
Without a victory at home since September 17, the visit of a Lilywhites team
who themselves are deep in a relegation battle, only a league below, seemed to
present the perfect opportunity to end that barren run.
It would also have given Jewell a first proper victory - his only success in
12 games remains the penalty shoot-out win over Sheffield Wednesday in the
Instead, the County boss was left to reflect on a day he described amongst his
worst in football.
Jewell said: 'At the end of the day the whole group - and I'm a part of that
- deserve criticism.
'We're not going to run away from that. If you can't take criticism, if you
can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.
'I've had one guy who said he's been watching the team for 25 years thank me
for embarrassing him. Well I've told him I'm embarrassed as well.'
He added: 'It beggars belief some of the mistakes that have gone on. Since I
have been here I have been saying the same thing every press conference.
'We mistakes and we get punished, we just fall apart, that's what happens to
this team. It seems that no matter what players we put out we make mistakes and once it
goes against us that's it, it's all over.'
The Rams may at times have come closer to winning games under Jewell - goals
in the last 10 minutes have cost them points in five of his nine Premier League
games in charge - but that was certainly not the case yesterday.
They were second best from the off and victory was sewn up by half-time as
North End, 22nd in the Coca-Cola Championship, raced into a 3-0 lead courtesy of
a Simon Whaley goal sandwiched between Karl Hawley's double.
Rams substitute Rob Earnshaw pulled one back early in the second half but it
was scant consolation for County.
An awful afternoon was sealed in injury-time when Lewin Nyatanga was sent off
for a professional foul on Neil Mellor, who converted the resulting penalty.
The home support made their feelings known at the final whistle as a chorus of
boos rang around the ground, and for Jewell it came as no surprise.
'It's totally justified,' he said. 'If I had been paying to watch them I'd
have done exactly the same, the only difference is I wouldn't have been as
patient as these people have been.
'We're all big boys and I've got to take my responsibility, so have the
players. There's no hiding place in this game.
'The supporters spend a lot of hard-earned cash travelling up and down the
country and they are well within their rights to react that way, 3-0 down
against a team in the Championship.'
Nor was it exactly the way to impress the club's new owners, who will be named
tomorrow, after the club's announcement that they are to be taken over by
'As long as the deal's signed and they weren't at the game, then everything
is all right,' Jewell joked.
'One of the reasons I came was that there was hopefully going to be
investment. I've spoken to them and they know the state the team is in but, like
me, they see the bigger picture.'
Preston boss Alan Irvine admitted the crowd's reaction had worked in his
side's favour but was still surprised by the margin of their victory.
'We have seen it before over the years,' he said. 'When you have played you
know how hard it is to cross that line at times and when you don't feel that
confident and you make a few mistakes early on
'You know the fans have a right to express their feelings, there's no doubt
about that, but that makes it very difficult for the players. I have a degree of
sympathy for the Derby lads.
'It doesn't make things worse for us that's for sure, it certainly probably
made things harder for those players.'
He added: 'We expected it to be tough. I certainly never anticipated it to be
3-0 at half-time. I think we played really, really well.'