Dunne: Jackett hadn't been himself before quitting Millwall

© Edmund Boyden
© Edmund Boyden

ALAN Dunne has revealed that Kenny Jackett had not been "his usual self" in the days leading up to his resignation as Millwall manager.

Jackett called time on his five-and-a-half year association with the Lions on Tuesday despite attempts from the club's board to keep him at the helm for another season.

Dunne said he had been left feeling "shocked and gutted" by the news, but admitted he had suspected something was not right about Jackett's demeanour over the past few days.



"I was shocked to hear the news but it made a bit of sense – little things that had happened suddenly added up," he told NewsAtDen. "I think he made his mind up over a couple of weeks, I don't think it was an overnight thing.

"At the Player of the Year dinner he was very quiet – he kept to himself. And he did not seem his usual self on the day of the Derby game or the day before that either. There was obviously something on his mind.

"Kenny's car was not at the training ground first thing on Tuesday morning, which immediately raised suspicion. Andy Ambler then called an emergency meeting and we were told that he'd handed in his resignation.



"The club tried to convince him to stay but he was adamant that he wanted to move on. The players were gutted and stunned. Especially some of the younger ones, I think they were shocked – I've seen this happen in my career a few times.

"I sent him a message thanking him for what he's done for me and the club. I told him I'd never forget how he's helped my career. He sent me a nice message back, which was kind, and just goes to show how good a relationship I had with him.

"I'm gutted but this is football and nothing lasts forever. He has been with us for over five years and done an amazing job. He's an amazing person and did a lot for my career. He changed by career for the better.

"He gave me a lot of drive and ambition to succeed in life. He'll be sadly missed at the club as a person and as a manager. But we will move on – the new manager will have fresh ideas and stir things up a little."

Dunne is still struggling to pinpoint a reason for Jackett's departure but suggested the 51-year-old may have simply felt the time was right to walk away after Millwall only narrowly escaped relegation at the end of last season.

"I do not think Kenny was unhappy with anything in particular – I believe he thought he had taken the team as far as he could," Dunne said. "After five years, he might want a fresh challenge. You can get very attached in football.

"Sometimes you need to part ways and go in a different direction. I'm not sure whether it was because we finished the season on a low – I really don't know. But he gave the job everything right until the very end and he was a fantastic servant to the club."

Dunne and some of the other senior members of the Lions squad, including Paul Robinson and Danny Shittu, have already held talks with chairman John Berylson about the future direction of the club.

"We had a meeting with the board," he said. "The chairman assured us that he's not going anywhere and that he will continue to back the club. They are going to find the right man for the job to build on Kenny's success.

"They've got players who are out of contract that need to be sorted out and players who we need to bring in. The club are going to do everything to find the right sort of manager and the right sort of players that fit the club. Those sort of things were brought up.

"It takes a certain character to manage Millwall. The fans want someone who is ambitious and wants to do well in this division. I don't think we want someone who plays it safe – we want to get into the top six and build on what Kenny's done."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

28 thoughts on “Dunne: Jackett hadn't been himself before quitting Millwall

  • May 8, 2013 at 15:45
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    Someone posted on here a couple of weeks ago that they knew for certain that Kenny had cleared his office after one of the last training sessions. Also, I thought it was a bit odd that during the Palarse game, it was Gallen in the technical area shouting and giving the orders while KJ stood back and it was Gallen who gave the post match interview after the Derby game not KJ. So, to me, this whole thing had been known about by the head honchos for a while now. What with Hulse getting booed (and quite rightly so) while be substituted and N’Guessen acting like a big tart in our last home game it must have been the final straw.

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  • May 8, 2013 at 15:48
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    "The chairman assured us that he's not going anywhere and that he will continue to back the club." I sincerely hope this is true.

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  • May 8, 2013 at 15:50
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    Hope sunny keeps his place in the first team, there sent many real wall players left.

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  • May 8, 2013 at 16:19
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    If JB decides he's had enough we really are in trouble!

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  • May 8, 2013 at 16:23
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    We want Ambitious Manager but we want the board to back him as well.

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  • May 8, 2013 at 16:44
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    Money thats all this is about, KJ has had a budget cut and he decided to cut and run, good luck to him.
    Our next Manager will have even less of a budget now.
    The players still in contract may request transfers in due course and also run, I dont know how many are out of contract this summer I suspect a lot they can go as far as I'm concerned most probably aren't good enough for the Championship
    Have we a team that can be generated to survive next year I very much doubt it. no good young uns coming throughand a lot of has beens
    To 'The Board' I say " it's in your hands now!!!" Help us the fans to have a successful team next year

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    • May 8, 2013 at 18:50
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      @aeojt: that's not correct he was offered an increased budget for next season and e still turned it down

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  • May 8, 2013 at 18:28
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    Noticed a few are worried about the chairman jumping ship, only natural I guess. But can you see JB jumping after his first manager decides to go ? Even if he did the club are in a stable position are debt free and are fortunately a championship club. Exactly how much we are worth I don't know but we're not in decline we just need sound investment to keep us moving onwards and upwards yr by yr. it was always going to be the biggest summer in our recent history but KJ going has made it even harder. Personally I think the loan market can do us a favour next season with some decent freebies cause the investment needed on the backroom I.e coaches and scouts could prove pretty expensive. KJ going could prove to be the kick up the backside the club needed they're more than aware if what's needed to move forward as they would have seen it since January and would have had that chat with KJ. Now they will be told pretty much the same thing from the people they interview. We'll know how serious the board are when or if they release their short list.

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    • May 8, 2013 at 20:26
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      @lukesmithmfc:
      I guess people are concerned about JB leaving is because Kenny, being a rational, down-to-earth overall good egg has buggered off, which is pretty much out of character it seems. Soooo. Has JB spooked him with talk of a last season at the Den perhaps?

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      • May 8, 2013 at 20:45
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        Being that its millwall it wouldn't surprise me, but as I've said we're in a much better position all round cause of him so wed be worth more than what he paid.
        I don't believe he'll go just yet though

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  • May 8, 2013 at 18:57
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    Dunny your passionate about the wall, stick ya cv in son. We need someone who will grow to love the wall like we the fans do, not some bloke who just happens to be available and out of work. The board,JB and AA have to realise that to be succesful in this league you have to pump some doe in and the benefits and returns will look after themselves after time. New supporters and sponsors attracted and so forth, so come on get those big fat wallets out and stop worrying about how much you can make out of our club......

    COYL!!!

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    • May 8, 2013 at 19:11
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      @mfc1rob: JB throws money at the club every year writing off huge losses out of his own pocket. If he left we would be in trouble like a whores vag

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  • May 8, 2013 at 21:09
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    Berylson isn't going anywhere.
    Now, I had a lot of respect for Jackett and he did wonders. But, it must be said that the second half of this season has been an absolute disaster and I think he did the right thing in resigning. He had gone as far as he could. Nothing to do with budgets. He thought it through and decided that he had lost interest and in all fairness his recent signings have been an embarassment. Respect for the past but the right honourable decision and now we move on.
    Budget was there and still is there. Sean Dyche would be my choice because he's got experience at Championship level and also would be aware of the current squad and the major sort-out it needs. He's not only an ex Millwall player but did a good job at Watford. Forget about Coyle, Warnock and others they're not Millwall type managers.
    Let's hope its a Millwall type of decision. Either way, I'm very sure we'll finish higher next season than we did this year and that, at the end of the day is justification for my Jackett must go stance. I'm sure we will because irrespective of your own personal thoughts, you'd have to agree that the Millwall squad as is, is absolute crap, and it was Jackett that created it.

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    • May 8, 2013 at 21:22
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      I will remind you of your comments come next may.

      The second best manager at our club in my time.

      You who have pushed have been rewarded. Those that disagree will remind you!!

      You have been warned!!! Lol

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    • May 9, 2013 at 00:33
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      @NICKOLA: What has Dyche achieved? Nothing. As usual you make the immediate assumption that you are right and we who have supported KJ are wrong. None of us know why he has left, my suspicion is that he realised that there was an increasing number of fans getting on his back and he felt it was better to finish on good terms. As Bonnie suggests, we'll see what comes next. As you know from my posts I'm an optimist but the names being suggested are filling me with dread. Big summer for our club.

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  • May 8, 2013 at 21:31
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    Bonnie,
    Jackett did a good job but it was time to go. He had lost the plot and very nearly got us relegated.
    I'll stand by what I think and said. Time will prove me right. Wait and see.

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    • May 9, 2013 at 00:43
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      @NICKOLA: Prove you right about what? There is no way of knowing what would have happened next season with KJ still in charge.

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  • May 8, 2013 at 21:36
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    By the way, Congratulations to you Harry; for winning the prediction league.
    Well done my fellow 'Jackett out' partner.

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    • May 9, 2013 at 17:31
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      @NICKOLA: haha thanks Nick. I'm not glorifying in his resignation, though. I'm now more optimistic about the future without kj however.

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      • May 9, 2013 at 18:54
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        Good on ya harry

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  • May 9, 2013 at 00:39
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    @NICKOLA: What has Dyche achieved? Nothing. As usual you make the immediate assumption that you are right and we who have supported KJ are wrong. None of us know why he has left, my suspicion is that he realised that there was an increasing number of fans getting on his back and he felt it was better to finish on good terms. As Bonnie suggests, we'll see what comes next. As you know from my posts I'm an optimist but the names being suggested are filling me with dread. Big summer for our club.

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  • May 9, 2013 at 00:44
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    @NICKOLA: Prove you right about what? There is no way of knowing what would have happened next season with KJ still in charge.

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  • May 9, 2013 at 08:47
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    Guys why all the fuss, right or wrong, one of you will be. Opinions that's all it is stop getting excited. Whoever comes in will disappoint one of you, don't worry about it, see what happens.
    Regardless of your opinions you'll both be doing the same thing for the rest if your lives. Your both entitled to your opinions but stop thinking your more entitled than the next man.
    You'll both be screaming and shouting and jumping up and down next season at some point and be cursing our luck at another. Fingers crossed the new man foes as good for us as KJ done in his time. Staying up for the next give or six yrs IMO will be deemed a success and will be as good a record as KJs. Come stick together for the good of the club.
    One of you will be right though and my money is on the winner. lol.

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    • May 9, 2013 at 10:22
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      @lukesmithmfc: Luke. Opinions are all I ever give on this site and I sometimes question other peoples reasoning. You're banging on the wrong door mate. In the end KJ has gone for his own reasons, there is no way of knowing what he could of done if he'd stayed. Therefore there is no right or wrong, which is my point.

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      • May 9, 2013 at 11:27
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        Woh woh woh fella hold your horses pal read my post again matey.
        Your both taking each other too serious so I'd thought I'd try and defuse it. I guess my judgement was right otherwise you wouldn't have replied to me the way you did. Don't understand how you can take my post personal.
        Never mind. Why your trying to justify your point to me I don't know, but I do know you should be saying it to nickola.
        Chill out, you got the wrong fella mate.
        I'm like you I give an opinion and every now and then will ? Someone else's but I also try to defuse a situation aswel with a bit of light hearted humour. Oh well lion.ie, lets hope the new man has as much passion for the lions.

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  • May 9, 2013 at 10:22
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    @lukesmithmfc: Luke. Opinions are all I ever give on this site and I sometimes question other peoples reasoning. You're banging on the wrong door mate. In the end KJ has gone for his own reasons, there is no way of knowing what he could of done if he'd stayed. Therefore there is no right or wrong, which is my point.

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  • May 9, 2013 at 11:03
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    Lion, agree with Luke here. It is an opinion. I often don't agree with his or your posts, but do respect them.
    I can't say what Jackett would have done next season but based on this one it didn't bode well. That's all anyone can base it on. The proof will be how he performs elsewhere and how the new Millwall manager fares. I really can't see us any worse off next season and talk of relegation to League one is a load of cobblers. We were 2 points away from that scenario last week. A new manager, approved 100% by the board has funds to improve the squad and to settle the down the few good players we still have. We need a lot of new players but those have to be the right players and the last batch left a lot to be desired to put it mildly. We don't know all the politics behind Jackett's resignation but apart from what's been stated on here I have a sneaky feeling there was dissent in the dressing room. You can't manage a team at any level even if based solely on that scenario.
    With regard to names that have been mooted as the new Millwall manager, there's a lot I personally don't rate-again that is just my opinion-and some I don't like at all. Whoever comes in will create mixed feelings amongst us all but hopefully will be the right man for the job. Only time will be the judge of that. Not you or me.

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  • May 9, 2013 at 12:38
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    We'll never know what would have happened with Jackett in charge next season, but I have to say I agree with Nickola that we can only go on what happened this season, which wasn't successful (no matter what Joe Gallen says) and could have been disastrous. I didn't want Jackett to leave because even though he had a dodgy finish to this season I think he is one of the few talented managers out there who learn from their mistakes. This was the first year we didn't improve our league position under Jackett. There are a few reasons for that. One of them is poor signings, but you have to balance that against the good signings he made like Wood, Beevers, Taylor and Shittu. No manager ever gets that 100% right -even Ferguson made poor choices from time to time. Then we had some long-term injuries to key players like Henry and Taylor and a very unhelpful fixture pile up at the end of the season. However, Jackett must take responsibility for the strange team selections and formations. Like McGhee at the end of his time he lost the plot with players placed in unfamiliar roles. Jack Smith, in my view, is a good defender, but not a midfielder and how many times have we seen Jackett play a striker on the wing? I don't think Jackett really ever got a creative midfield system going. In the end it was all about wingers and our offensive play was predictable and created few opportunities for the strikers. Would it have been better next season? I believe it would have been but I have to admit in the cold light of day Jackett may have made absolutely the correct decision in resigning.

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