Dundee have asked new manager Jim McIntyre to look elsewhere for his assistant after preferred choice Billy Dodds left Dens Park before training yesterday, writes Alan Pattullo.
McIntyre’s first official day in charge at Dens Park began in farcical circumstances when Dodds, who is based in Inverness, arrived for an early morning meeting with Dundee managing director John Nelms.
The level of fan opposition to Dodds’ appointment had forced Nelms to think twice about agreeing to McIntyre’s wish to hire his former assistant at Ross County. Nelms and Dodds had an early morning meeting prior to McIntyre’s official unveiling as manager at lunchtime.
Nelms was taken aback by the overnight reaction to the plan by McIntyre, who replaces Neil McCann – sacked on Tuesday – to recruit Dodds as his No 2.
Dodds was a popular figure at Dundee when a player between 1989 and 1994 but later turned many fans against him when he voted against a company voluntary arrangement that spared the club from liquidation in 2011.
Dundee had been placed in administration in 2010 while Dodds, pictured, was assistant manager to Gordon Chisholm and both were still owed money by the previous owners. The management team had been recruited from Queen of the South in March of that year.
Now Dodds’ hopes of a return to football at the club where he scored 77 goals in 195 appearances have been dashed.
Nelms said: “I think it will be very tough for him to come into this environment. Never say never, but it will be tough.
“I’m responding to the well-written emails I’m receiving which have true animosity and I’m willing to speak to a few of them as well to get their thoughts and understanding.
“I’m looking at this from a third party perspective and we weren’t here. I understand what happened at the time. It was a horrible situation for everyone – the fans felt shafted, the staff felt shafted, everyone felt shafted.
“People there at the time suffered as it was a horrific mess. Some people handled it in ways which – in hindsight – they might have wanted to do differently.
“At the end of the day, it was a situation that no-one wants to live through again.”
Jimmy Boyle, Dundee’s head of youth development, helped McIntyre take training yesterday after Dodds had left Dens.
It is unlikely McIntyre will appoint a new assistant before tomorrow’s trip to face Livingston. Gerry McCabe is a candidate having worked with McIntyre at Dunfermline and Queen of the South but he is not expected to return to Dens Park after leaving the post of assistant manager following Paul Hartley’s sacking by Dundee in March last year.