It wasn’t a surprise to hear Micky Mellon was leaving Dundee United.
However, I can’t help but feel it is a backwards step for the club.
We’d all heard the rumours of other clubs interested in the Tannadice manager and a possible parting of the ways coming this summer.
For me, it’s a shame to see Mellon go.
I think he did a good job.
His task was to keep Dundee United in the Premiership.
He did that with weeks and weeks to spare and with someone else’s squad, I might add.
In fact, you could argue he overachieved with the cup run to the Scottish Cup semi-final, too.
Critics will point to the style of play and that’s completely understandable.
But, at the end of the day, he did the job he was tasked with.
I’ll admit I expected United to be in the relegation scrap right till the end in their first season back up.
However, there was no drama like that and they stayed up with room to spare.
Now, though, United are back to square one.
Robbie Neilson left last summer, this time it’s Mellon heading out the door and the Tangerines are looking for another new manager.
That’s not good for any club.
I know as a player I thrived on certainty, I needed that security of knowing who my manager would be and what he wanted from me.
It’s not just that, the coaching staff are part of the team and you all want to progress together – that can’t happen with new managers and coaches every year.
In my view, for a club to improve consistently the way Dundee United want to, they need continuity.
I say it’s a backwards step because the new manager, whoever it may be, has to come in and judge the entire squad all over again.
It’s a clean slate for everyone, sometimes that’s a good thing.
However, in United’s current situation that means a new manager will take another 18 months to get to know the players at his disposal.
The Tangerines aren’t established yet in the Premiership and are at the stage where they need new players.
There’s a turnaround of players required whenever you get promoted, that’s inevitable.
However, the new man at the helm will need time to figure the characters in his dressing-room, the personalities around the place, where the strengths and weaknesses are.
Without watching every United game for the past season, that’s going to take at least a year.
Unless it’s going to be a big-name coming in with a raft of new signings, it’s not an ideal situation for a club wanting to move forward like United are.
The rumour is academy coach Tam Courts is the man to step in as first-team boss.
I don’t know much about him but he’s obviously an ambitious coach.
I’m wary of that, though.
I’m not sure it would be the right time for someone with his inexperience to be stepping into a club like Dundee United.
We’ll have to wait and see what happens but I’m not convinced United are going in the right direction.
Defensive work paid off for James McPake and Dundee
It feels so long since Dundee were on the up.
Far, far too long.
It’s great to see the team enjoying playing at Dens Park – and hopefully, the fans can enjoy watching them next season, too.
For their team will be playing Premiership football in a short few months.
I’ve got to say, deservedly so as well.
Over the two legs of the play-off final, they were better than Kilmarnock.
There was a definite gameplan and you could see they’ve been working on their defensive game for a while now.
At the start of the season they were obviously leaking poor goals but they clearly addressed that and the work has paid off.
There was a real togetherness in the Dark Blues and a gameplan which clearly Kilmarnock didn’t have.
I can’t imagine they would have planned to be 2-0 up after 12 minutes.
But then they knew their jobs, knew what they had to do to keep Killie out. And they did that really well.
They conceded a penalty but overall the defence was excellent.
The backline did everything right, body positions were perfect and Lee Ashcroft and Liam Fontaine were both excellent.
The full-backs were great – in fact, everybody was right on their game.
Congratulations to everyone at Dens Park, great to see Dundee back!
Two Premiership teams is great for the city
There will be a few Dundee United fans saying otherwise I know but it’s great for the city to have both teams back in the top flight again.
Having the derbies back just brings that extra edge to things.
Both teams will be wanting to do well in the Premiership next term but there’s also that added thing of finishing above the rival across the street.
The fans have missed out so much over the past year and a bit – having derbies back to look forward to will only add to the anticipation for next season.
Derbies are like cup finals in this city. Bring them on!