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Dave Cormack says sacking Stephen Glass was ‘the hardest thing’ but believes Jim Goodwin can bring good times back to Pittodrie

Former Aberdeen manager Stephen Glass.
Former Aberdeen manager Stephen Glass.

Aberdeen chairman Dave Cormack admitted the decision to part company with Stephen Glass was incredibly difficult.

Glass was dismissed as Dons boss in February after only 11 months in charge with Goodwin moving from St Mirren to become his successor at Pittodrie.

Cormack felt the Aberdeen coaching team under Glass may have benefited from having a more experienced coach alongside them.

In an interview with RedTV, he said: “Hindsight is a wonderful thing. In terms of parting company with Stephen, it doesn’t matter who it is or the methods involved, it is the hardest thing to do.

“My message to Stephen was one of encouragement. Just because one door closes doesn’t mean to say others won’t open up.

“The margins are fine.

“We started the season extremely well and we then had the cup challenge against Raith Rovers.

“We went into autumn and hit a 10-12 game streak that was a real challenge.

“I said to Scott Brown when he applied for the St Mirren job, wherever you get into management, let’s say in Scotland, you need to bring in someone with real experience of the Scottish game.

“When you are in the heat of the battle on the touchline it is important to have someone level-headed who is there beside you.

“The best analogy I can give you is Derek McInnes had Tony Docherty and Paul Sheerin.

“I think looking back we could have supported Stephen in terms of him bringing on another full-time coach who had that experience.”

While Glass, who was the Atlanta United 2 head coach prior to succeding McInnes at Pittodrie, lacked experience of managing in the top flight of Scottish football, Cormack felt having England strikers coach Allan Russell and former Celtic and Scotland captain Scott Brown in a player-coach role was a management team with plenty of potential.

He said: “The rationale behind appointing Stephen was that it wasn’t just Stephen, it was Allan Russell with his significant international experience particularly in set-pieces and working with strikers and Scott Brown coming in with his significant experience of Scottish football. Plus it was Neil Simpson moving from the youth academy to being part of the first team set up.

“As far as other candidates were concerned and the reason we sped up the process, we were interviewing with a top candidate for the job and literally when we were on the Zoom call he stopped and said he had just accepted a role at another club in England.

“Another candidate pulled out of the race for differing reasons.”

Cormack felt the Dons weren’t far away from a more positive campaign but paid the price for too many defensive lapses.

He said: “It has been a really poor season.

“We can say it started out well and we got further in Europe than we had since Jimmy Calderwood was here but the cup defeats and the league performances…

“Nobody has hammered us in the league – it has been fine margins.

“But when you only have four games in the league where you don’t concede goals it becomes a tough season.”

Aberdeen manager Jim Goodwin applauds the large travelling support after the 2-2 draw at Dundee.

But Cormack is confident Jim Goodwin has the attributes to take the club back in the right direction.

He said: “Jim Goodwin wants to reduce the average age of the squad. Why?

“Because he wants to play a pressing game and to play a pressing game you need younger players on average, who are able to execute that for 90 minutes.

“It is Jim’s call, working with these guys (Steven Gunn and Darren Mowbray) to revamp the squad for next season.

“The investment is there in the wage bill and the transfer fees we have gone through.

“It has been a really tough season but the only thing we can do is dust ourselves off and make appropriate changes and get ready for next season.

“We have been in existence for 119 years – we have won trophies in about 15 or 16 seasons, half of which was under Sir Alex Ferguson.

“This isn’t an excuse. We haven’t won the Scottish Cup for 32 years. We have won one cup in 27 years.

“The vision and strategy is the right one, footballing wise.

“We have had a bad season but that doesn’t mean to say the strategy and vision is wrong.

“I’m a cup half-full guy, we can get going again next season.”

But Cormack is hopeful there will be new additions to the trophy cabinet during his tenure as chairman.

He said: “I think we should go out every season with the goal of trying to win a trophy.

“Will we win a trophy every season? History says not.

“I think every three, four or five years we should be trying to win a trophy.

“It is an aspiration.

“This season has been tough for everybody but I have broad shoulders.

“We will go again.”

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