Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Low Graphics

Saturday, August 28, 1999 Published at 16:01 GMT 17:01 UK

Sport: Football: News

Gullit quits Newcastle

Gullit: Unhappy with press attention

Newcastle's under-fire manager Ruud Gullit has resigned blaming the media for invading his privacy .

Ruud Gullit: "Now I know what they really meant by that"
Gullit, who failed to win a match this season, accepted criticism for his poor run of results.

But he said he could no longer carry on under such intense scrutiny which was affecting his family.

He made no mention of the battle of wills with Newcastle captain Alan Shearer which culminated in the striker being left on the bench in a crucial game last week.

Newcastle United fans respond to Gullit's resignation
Deputy Steve Clarke, the man Gullit brought from Chelsea, will take charge for the crunch match against Manchester United on Monday.

After hearing of Gullit's resignation, Shearer admitted he did not see "eye to eye" with the Dutchman.

"There was no hiding the fact that me and Ruud didn't see eye to eye, but I was as surprised as anyone when I heard the news.

"There was no rift. I made that clear to everyone on Tuesday. He had his reasons for leaving me out on Wednesday and you'd have to ask him why he did that.

"I always said no individual is bigger than any football club. I took it in the right way and we didn't get a good result and everything has happened so quickly over the last few days."

Newcastle United captain Alan Shearer: "Me and Ruud didn't see eye to eye"
Newcastle picked up just one point from their first five games of the season and, crucially, lost to arch-rivals Sunderland last Wednesday.

Newcastle squandered the lead in the game for the fourth time in a row.

Gullit remained defiant

Gullit infuriated the club's supporters by leaving Shearer out of the starting line-up for the game.

There were boos at the end of the game, but Gullit remained defiant over the decision.

The BBC's John Murray: "A case of when and not if"
There has been speculation of a rift between the two men, with some reports suggesting that Shearer may take on some sort of management role now Gullit has resigned.

Shearer backed his manager prior to the match against Sunderland.

Desperate start

But the support was received grudgingly by Gullit, who said: "It's time that he said something. He's the captain, that's one of his jobs."

The Dutchman has been under pressure for weeks after his side's desperate start to the season.

In fact they have not won a game since April, a run of 12 matches, and despite the investment of around £16m during the summer, things have gone from bad to worse.

'Sexy football'

Gullit arrived at St James' Park exactly a year ago after Kenny Dalglish's split with the club left a yawning vacancy on Tyneside.

Malcolm MacDonald: "I know the Dutch mentality"
It was widely thought that the Newcastle board had pulled off something of a coup in securing the services of the former Chelsea manager.

He promised 'sexy football' but when that failed to arrive support for his management went into decline.

Newcastle's next two matches are against Manchester United and Chelsea and there is a very real possibility that United could approach the middle of September with a solitary point to their name.

Gullit's departure had an immediate effect on the future of Shearer's close friend Rob Lee, who trained with the first team squad for the first time in weeks, after being discarded by the Dutchman.

Lee, who has not even been given a squad number for the new season, is in the squad for Monday's difficult trip to Manchester United, as Newcastle attempt to record their first Premiership victory in 13 attempts.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

Relevant Stories

28 Aug 99 | News
Fans blame Shearer rift for resignation

28 Aug 99 | Football
Dutch master floored by fatal flaw

28 Aug 99 | Football
Ruud Gullit - full resignation statement