Belfast Telegraph

Axed Gray: I'm sorry I wasn't able to deliver Reds glory

Former boss reveals all about his time in Solitude hotseat

Former Cliftonville manager Barry Gray
Former Cliftonville manager Barry Gray

By Steven Beacom

Barry Gray has apologised to the Cliftonville fans, players and board for not delivering the success he thought he could bring to the club as manager.

Gray's roller coaster 20-month spell as boss of the Reds ended on Saturday after his team lost 3-1 to Dungannon Swifts in the league - their sixth defeat in seven games.

The Solitude outfit have placed Michael Press, respected at the club for his work with Cliftonville Olympic, in interim charge while they search for Gray's replacement.

Gray guided Cliftonville to an Irish Cup final and into Europe last season and had hoped to challenge for the league title this term and win silverware but speaking to the Belfast Telegraph he insisted that he had no regrets about how he went about his job in north Belfast.

The former Warrenpoint Town boss also pointed out that he inherited off the field issues which he couldn't control and revealed that he held no grudges against the Cliftonville fans who had given him so much abuse towards the end of his tenure.

"Nobody likes to take criticism especially in public but I don't hold any grudges or anything personal against fans for having gripes against me," stated Gray.

"I hope to go back to Solitude and be able to watch games for years to come and not be sitting in the lion's den.

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"I fully accept responsibility and can only apologise to Cliftonville players, Cliftonville fans and the board that I wasn't able to deliver what I thought I could. Results this season just didn't stack up - it's as simple as that."

Gray added that his 'balloon is not busted' because of the Cliftonville experience and he would consider a return to management in the future.

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