Aberdeen legend Joe Harper believes Dons chairman Dave Cormack had to sack Stephen Glass to put the fans out of their misery.
Glass has paid the price for poor results after his 11-month spell in charge at Pittodrie was brought to an end following the club’s Scottish Cup exit at the hands of Motherwell on Saturday.
Harper, Aberdeen’s all-time leading scorer, is sorry to see Glass lose his job – but insists Cormack had to act.
The Evening Express columnist said: “It was inevitable. I don’t think Stephen is a bad person. He’s a nice lad, but it just didn’t work.
“It’s sad all round, but the club couldn’t allow the supporters to continue to suffer like this. We had 2,000 supporters at Motherwell on Saturday. They are die-hard supporters. Others had given up.
“One of my friends said he was not going to any more away games this season because of the way the team is playing. We’re not pressuring teams the way they put pressure on us.
“It didn’t matter what he did, it didn’t work.
“The only times we seemed to play was against Rangers and Celtic when we had to put up a fight, and when we came to the smaller teams or away from home we haven’t looked fired-up enough.
“The Rangers and Celtic games look after themselves. It’s the rest of the league where teams have done to us what we’re trying to do to Celtic and Rangers which has been the problem.”
‘I couldn’t have replicated Ramirez’s goal haul, given the tactics’
Harper believes the decision to leave striker Christian Ramirez isolated for much of the campaign has been one of the issues which has led to the club languishing in ninth place in the Scottish Premiership.
The American forward scored his 15th goal of the campaign when he put the Dons ahead at Fir Park on Saturday only for Well to hit back with two goals before the break to seal their place in the quarter-final.
Harper says, under the circumstances, Ramirez’s haul is hugely impressive.
He said: “The tactics have been concerning, too, as we’ve gone most of the season with one striker up front.
“The plan is supposed to be for the striker to move around and people to help him, but it hasn’t happened. For Christian Ramirez to score 15 goals so far in this team is remarkable.
“I couldn’t have done what I did without the help of guys like Davie Robb, Drew Jarvie and Steve Archibald.”
Players need to accept responsibility for their part in results
Glass and fellow coaches Allan Russell and Henry Apaloo have paid the price for the poor performances, but Harper believes there are several players who need to assess whether they could have done more for their former boss.
He said: “It’s not just Stephen Glass’ fault. It’s the players too as some were not turning up.
“Some were given a chance, while others were given second chances, but it wasn’t working.
“Too many have strolled around the park playing tippy-tappy stuff when we’ve needed them roll their sleeves up and win more battles.”