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Whitney to take charge of Walsall FC first team

Walsall coach Jon Whitney Credit: Mike Egerton / EMPICS Sport

Walsall Football Club have confirmed that First Team Performance Coach, Jon Whitney, will look after first team affairs.

It comes after the club parted company with head coach Sean O' Driscoll following Saturday's 3-1 home defeat by League One promotion rivals Barnsley.

In a statement, Walsall FC said:

"Walsall Football Club can today confirm that First Team Performance Coach, Jon Whitney will take control of first team affairs.

Whitney will be assisted by First Team Coach, Neil Cutler and Professional Development Coach, John Ward ahead of Saturday’s League One fixture with Chesterfield.

The club will be making no further comment at this time."

– Walsall FC spokesperson

Fan reaction: Steve Davies from Walsall Football Supporters Trust

He lost the fans and once you do that it's a slippery slope. It's the expectation that kills you, we can see a golden chance to go up and it's slipping away.

– Steve Davies, Walsall Football Supporters Trust

He admits he feels sorry for O'Driscoll as he was pleased with the original appointment, but says the Club has made the right choice in identifying something was going wrong, and taking action to correct it.

Steve hopes that the 'three amigos', Jon Whitney, John Ward and Neil Cutler, who were previously in charge on an interim basis, will return to the helm.

Sean O'Driscoll said today,

They are a close group whose success so far has been built on the trust, understanding and respect among them. I wish them the best for the rest of the season.

– Sean O'Driscoll, former Walsall Head Coach

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O'Driscoll: 'I wish them the best for the rest of the season'

Walsall FC have 'parted company' with Head Coach Sean O'Driscoll Credit: PA Wire

Walsall FC have parted company with head coach Sean O' Driscoll.

The 58-year-old leaves the club after just 16 games at the helm. The club are currently sitting in fourth place in League One but have experienced a winless six-game run.

"I am extremely disappointed for the players, their performances over the past month have not gained the points they deserved," O'Driscoll said.

"This is a different phase of the season, and as we have repeatedly seen, teams have recognised the team’s strengths from the first half of the campaign and prepared to counter that when facing us.

"But the players deserve enormous credit for adapting, finding different ways to play and maintaining their performance levels even, at times, in the face of frustration and disappointment.

"They are a close group whose success so far has been built on the trust, understanding and respect among them. I wish them the best for the rest of the season."

BREAKING: Walsall 'part company' with Sean O'Driscoll

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Walsall FC have parted company with head coach Sean O' Driscoll following Saturday's 3-1 home defeat by League One promotion rivals Barnsley.

The club's CEO thanked O'Driscoll for his work at the club in a brief statement.

Stefan Gamble said: "On behalf of the Board we thank Sean for his time, effort and dedication during his short spell at the Club and wish him well for the future."

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