Not getting any easier for GLRU.
November 5, 2012 in Uncategorized
Supersport.com is reporting that:
Suspended Golden Lions coach John Mitchell has come out fighting to be reinstated as head coach of the Lions again, after he apparently was cleared of misconduct by an independent inquiry.
Mitchell’s management company, the Fordham Company, released a statement claiming Mitchell had been found not guilty of “various charges of misconduct levelled against him by the GLRU, with a further six charges having been withdrawn by the Johannesburg-based club.”
“Even though John has been cleared of these particular allegations, the GLRU, through its lawyers, is not prepared to release details to John or his lawyers,” Mitchell’s management, The Fordham Company, said on Monday.
“That’s pretty amazing considering the damage that this action taken by the GLRU has done to John’s reputation and brand. Furthermore, the GLRU’s lawyers have advised John’s lawyers that they are not prepared to release the findings and recommendations pertaining to the remaining nine charges brought against John unless John agrees to sign a confidentiality undertaking. One would have to question why this information is being withheld”
GLRU has not had the best of years. Not that it is all their fault. But they have lost Super Rugby status for 2013. Lost arbitration cases against their affiliate unions and now have lost their misconduct case against their own head coach John Mitchell.
Mitchell was vehemently praised at the end of 2011 for bringing the CC back to Jburg for the first time in ages. He turned around a disastrous few coaching tenors to make the Lions into the tittle contending team that they now are/were?
He and the Lions did not have a good SR2012 campaign. His team was hit by a plethora of injuries and if we are honest they were just a bit inexperienced to deal with all those injuries.
At the end of the S15 Mitchell was accused firstly of abusing players (allegedly) and bringing the GLRU into disrepute due to remarks in the media. He was suspended.
Now with Mitchell being found not guilty it really makes things a lot more difficult for the Lions. They have had Johan Ackerman as interim coach and he has done well with all the controversy surrounding the Lions. He was rumored to be a shoe in for the job. The GLRU has also advertised the post as head coach for Lions.
John himself said that he would like to continue as head coach at the Lions. But one wonders how this would work with communication and working relationship between himself and the GLRU administrators not at any great footing. And how would the players who brought charges against him feel if they are still there.
The only other viable option seems to be for the GLRU is to buy out the remainder of his contract.( Although one never know what lawyers can conjure up if they want a contract terminated. ) That said I am not sure whether the Lions can afford to pay out Mitchell with them not having the most sound financial status on top of losing SR status.
It will be interesting to see what happens. But even the most staunch Lions supporter would have to agree that it looks like the GLRU has not done themselves any favors by suspending Mitchell without any real cause. Because now the troubled rugby union is even further humiliated in the media by Mitchel’s reps.
Will the admin of the GLRU be made to eat humble pie by re-instating Mitchell or will they find a way to save face?
I am not sure but one feels for the Lions rugby supporters who have not had any real positive news in a long time and who would have liked for this issue to be done and dusted by now so that the Lions can concentrate on their most important job: beating their opponents in pro/releg match in 2013.
Update: It looks like Mitchell was indeed busy looking for work in EU. And his lawyers says this is not against his contract relegation’s. And that he might still opt to go to EU. So maybe this “I want my job back” is a bluff from Mitchell to show the Lions he would not mind getting his job back and force the Lions into a golden hand shake. Either way it will cost the Lions plenty.