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Dartford's Tony Burman says he did not interfere with the team under Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle

ByMatthew Panting

Tony Burman has dismissed suggestions he interfered with team matters at Dartford.

Jamie Coyle and Adam Flanagan left the club last week after a dismal start to the season.

Joint-managers Jamie Coyle and Adam Flanagan left Dartford after nine league games this season.
Joint-managers Jamie Coyle and Adam Flanagan left Dartford after nine league games this season.

Burman has remained a director since he stepped down as first-team manager in May 2018 – but he claimed he kept his distance.

“There’s one thing I want to make clear, I was not their right-hand man,” said Burman.

“They were their own guys. I never put one foot in the changing room, I never put one foot on the training ground. It’s not what I’m about.

“I help to run the club, I didn’t want to be called a director of football.”

Burman, who was in charge of the club’s budget, also confirmed that he only voiced his concerns over one signing made while the pair were in charge.

“They wanted the players that they wanted and at every club you have to report to someone,” added Burman.

“They got a budget and they (got the) players in. The wages, as long as it was within that budget and not extortionate then everything goes through.

“I didn’t tell them they couldn’t sign anybody, there was one player on loan in their first season and I thought it was a bit extravagant what the other club were asking for on his wages.

“We have to keep the finances straight. Jamie and Adam knew that, we helped them after they had a dreadful start with the injuries.

“If they wanted to ask questions or wanted my opinion then I’d give it to them – that’s how it worked.

“Did I want to be brought in? Not really, because it means that someone else has lost their job.”

On Coyle and Flanagan, Burman added: “They’d been away from this club for 9-10 years, they’ve been away and done their things.

“Jamie has been with successful sides and got promotion from lower leagues, Flan had been at clubs where he had smaller budgets.

“To me, we gave them a fair chance and it’s disappointing they’ve not been here a lot longer. We have to move on and there are plenty of applicants for the job.”

Reflecting on the 4-3 defeat to Dorking Wanderers, Burman was pleased with the work ethic of his team but felt Dartford lacked fitness in the closing stages.

He also questioned Lee Noble’s red card but praised the contribution of Charlie Sheringham up front.

“I was delighted with the effort the players put in,” he said. “We asked them to close down a lot higher up the pitch.

“We had three goals against us that were outstanding finishes. We’ve conceded far too many goals in the 10 games we’ve played. It’s not good enough that’s happening and that’s where the work has got to be done.

Stand-in Dartford boss Tony Burman on the sidelines against Dorking Wanderers on Saturday. Picture: Sean Aidan
Stand-in Dartford boss Tony Burman on the sidelines against Dorking Wanderers on Saturday. Picture: Sean Aidan

“The penalty decision against us I can say is a poor goal in respect of the way we defended. Was it a penalty? I honestly don’t think it was.

“I thought we did well in the second half. It was the best Charlie Sheringham has played in a while.

“No-one thought it was a sending-off other than their bench. I wouldn’t say they got him sent-off but their reaction wasn’t good and it shouldn’t be like that. It was a poor decision.

“I have to question a few of them who haven’t played. I thought the fitness was down (from) what it should be. That’s no disrespect to anybody, I’m just (giving) an honest opinion.

“The fitness side of things, probably where they’ve been injured, it should be better and I was disappointed in that.”

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