Morecambe co-chairman’s vote of confidence in manager Jim Bentley

Morecambe boss Jim Bentley
Morecambe boss Jim Bentley

Morecambe co-chairman Rod Taylor believes manager Jim Bentley deserves more credit than he receives for continually keeping the club in the EFL.

English football’s longest-serving manager has been the Shrimps boss for eight years, during which time the club has maintained EFL status.

That has been despite a backdrop of issues off the field with low budgets, troublesome training facilities, a transfer embargo and late payment of wages testing 
Bentley’s patience.

The final day survival at Coventry City a year ago was too close for comfort for everyone involved at the club but it was a relatively stress-free end to last season with the Shrimps in 18th place.

However, it didn’t stop Bentley from firing back at a section of Morecambe supporters following the draw with Grimsby Town in mid-April; a reaction Taylor understood.

“I think some of the criticism levelled at him last year was totally unfair,” he said.

“If people knew how hard they work day in day out, the work that Jim, Ken (McKenna, assistant manager) and the backroom team do is second to none.

“I think we were delighted with the league position in the end; we secured safety with three games to go, which took the pressure off.

“It could have been a lot better but we were plagued by injuries last season; at one point, there were eight players who would have been in the starting line-up that weren’t available.

“It was pleasing in the end but we want more ambition; we don’t just want to be aiming for maintaining our league status - and we don’t want to be charged with not being ambitious.

“We’ve had to cut our cloth according to our purse but that’s something we’re working on, especially from the commercial angle going forward.”