Hibs chief Dempster left ‘really gutted’ by sacking of Stubbs

Former Hibs head coach Alan Stubbs was back in Edinburgh on Monday night for the launch of Hibs' Scottish Cup winning DVD. Pic: SNS

Former Hibs head coach Alan Stubbs was back in Edinburgh on Monday night for the launch of Hibs' Scottish Cup winning DVD. Pic: SNS

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Hibs chief executive Leeann Dempster has admitted to being “really gutted” to hear of former Easter Road boss Alan Stubbs being sacked by Rotherham United.

And although insisting she couldn’t speak for the club rooted to the foot of the English Championship, Dempster revealed she believes football club managers need time to make an impact.

Stubbs was axed by the South Yorkshire outfit barely five months after quitting Edinburgh only days after guiding Hibs to their first Scottish Cup triumph in 114 years.

Speaking as Stubbs returned to the Capital for the launch of the DVD Time for Heroes which 
celebrates that historic achievement, Dempster, who gave the former Celtic and Everton defender his first shot at management, said: “I was really gutted for him. I think when you start something – and we went through the same situation with Alan – you have to give them time to make the necessary changes as football clubs are big entities and you can’t change them overnight.

“I know it’s a results driven business but the Championship in England is a tough league at the best of times. It’s a tougher league when you are at a club which operates at the bottom.

“I can understand in some ways the club’s position. Equally, though, I feel that you really need to stick with something or you will have to keep re-inventing yourself.

“Look at Hibs in the recent past and you could say exactly the same thing.

I can’t speak for Rotherham, but I can speak for the Hibs board and the supporters who backed us and gave us the chance to completely change the club and change the football side of it.”

Asked if she would ever contemplate sacking a manager in such a short space of time, Dempster replied: “I have had one experience of letting a manager go but that 
appointment was down to the chairman and it was a different scenario.

“Anyone I have appointed or been involved in appointing personally so far has gone on to do something and I’m really pleased about that.”