Forest Green Rovers Boss Addresses Scathing Post-Match Interview

Forest Green Rovers manager Troy Deeney has apologised for his scathing pot-match rant following his side’s 2-0 defeat against Harrogate Town yesterday.

The former Watford striker pulled no punches in his assessment of yesterday’s reverse, a result which left the Gloucestershire outfit rooted to the foot of League Two and seven points from safety. The Green’s are without a win since October and a second successive relegation appears to be on the cards.

In particular, defender Fankaty Dabo was in the firing line of Deeney’s comments. The 35-year-old claimed that the former Coventry City man was ‘awful’ and he will be dropped for Tuesday’s trip to promotion-chasing Mansfield Town.

“Dabo was awful again and I’ve told him,” Deeney told BBC Radio Gloucestershire. “He won’t be playing on Tuesday.

“He’s not been good enough for five, six, seven, eight, nine weeks now. Why do you think he was dropped at the start? I’ve told him in front of everyone that six months ago he had a kick to go to the Premier League, now he wouldn’t get a game in the National League.

“He’s faster than anybody and on pure ability but he gets ran every game, he never makes a tackle, and every time the ball comes to him he looks like he kicks it with his shin pads.”

The comments drew immediate criticism from all quarters, and Deeney was asked for clarification this afternoon whilst providing punditry on Sky Sports’ coverage of the Championship clash between Queens Park Rangers and Watford. Whilst apologising, the ex-Birmingham City man did stand by his comments, saying:

“We’re all learning on the job. I let my emotions get the best of me at times.

“As a player you can obviously say what you want. Listen, I still stand by what I said but probably shouldn’t have let that out.

“I’ve already spoken to Dabo and apologised but I expect high standards.”

Dabo headed to Nailsworth in the summer from Coventry, where he featured in the play-off final defeat against Luton Town in May, missing the Sky Blues’ final penalty in the eventual shootout. He has made 20 appearances in all competitions but looks set to sit out the crucial fixture against the Stags on Tuesday.

Writer’s View

Deeney had no choice to apologise for his comments, even if he did double down by standing by them. There was nothing to gain by voicing these grievances in public and it has only increased the scrutiny he is currently under.

Although only appointed manager less than a month ago, it is looking as if the writing could already be on the wall and his assessment yesterday is a quick way to lose dressing room support. Forest Green are in a bit of a mess at the moment and it would be a surprise to see Deeney able to save them from the drop.

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