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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 April, 2005, 04:20 GMT 05:20 UK
Rush walks out as Chester manager
Ian Rush
When a valued member of my team is dismissed against my wishes, I have no option but to follow my principles
Ian Rush
Ian Rush has resigned as manager of League Two strugglers Chester.

Rush, 43, decided to quit after the club terminated the contract of his assistant Mark Aizlewood on Monday.

"Unfortunately, throughout my tenure, various events have gradually made it impossible for me to carry on," said Rush, who took over in August 2004.

"The club's decision to terminate the contract of my assistant, Mark Aizlewood, without my consent was the final straw."

Rush's appointment in August resulted in an immediate upturn of fortunes for Chester and the former Liverpool striker was named League Two manager of the month in August.

But following a slump in the new year that saw a run of just two wins in 10 games, Rush's job came under threat in March.

Club owner Stephen Vaughan claimed that Rush was offered a deal to quit the Deva Stadium but snubbed it.

In response, Rush's solicitor said that the club had made "no formal or valid offer".

But following the departure of Aizlewood on Monday, Rush has now decided to resign.

"I was already considering my position after the much publicised comments from the club a few weeks ago," Rush added.

"Loyalty is vital in football and I am a loyal person. When a valued member of my team is dismissed against my wishes, I have no option but to follow my principles."

My team and I have plenty to offer - I hope to return to the game as soon as possible
Ian Rush

Rush continued: "People never know what goes on behind the scenes and that will remain the case.

"All I can say is that, in these extremely difficult circumstances, I believe that I was achieving the only goal I set myself - to keep Chester in the Football League.

"When you have to sell your best players at low prices, then are told there is no money for strengthening the squad, survival is the only target you can set yourself."

Chester had picked up seven points from a possible nine prior to Saturday's defeat against Darlington.

And Rush stressed he wants to return to management as soon as possible.

"Since I came to Chester, the team has lost only 13 games in 41," said Rush.

"We have steered the club, slowly but surely, away from the foot of the table - where it was when I joined. The club is a good nine points away from relegation.

"People talk of a slump but how can you slump from the foot of the table to nine points clear of relegation?

"As for the future, my team and I have plenty to offer in management and coaching and I hope to return to the game as soon as possible."

Technical co-ordinator Dave Bell has been placed in temporary charge of team affairs for Saturday's game with Boston.


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