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Former Plymouth Argyle defender Keith Hill is dumped by Barnsley as Championship culling continues

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: December 31, 2012

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Barnsley sacked manager Keith Hill after Saturday’s 3-1 home defeat to Blackburn Rovers sent the South Yorkshire club to the bottom of the npower Championship table.

The former Plymouth Argyle defender had come under increasing pressure in recent weeks and, after the Tykes slumped to a seventh home league defeat of the season, they started a search for their fourth manager in three and a half years. Hill had replaced previous boss Mark Robins in June 2011.

Goals from Joshua King and Ruben Rochina put the visitors in control at Oakwell, and Jordan Rhodes sealed Rovers’ win after Stephen Dawson had pulled a goal back.

Barnsley general manager Don Rowing told Hill that his time was up straight after Saturday’s game. Rowing said: “Keith was very disappointed but this was a decision made by the board and not by one man. It is a very sad day.

“We thank Keith for the hard work he has put in, but we have not won at home since we beat Bristol City in September. The fans have become restless and they look to us to make the decisions. The results haven’t gone our way and he has paid for it,” Rowing added.

Blackburn gained their win at Oakwell with caretaker boss Gary Bowyer in charge for the first time. Rovers sacked Henning Berg last week.

Nottingham Forest also fired a manager last week, and new boss Alex McLeish was very encouraged by what he saw from the directors’ box at the City Ground on Saturday as his new team secured a 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace.

McLeish, installed as Sean O’Driscoll’s successor last Thursday, watched his side go behind twice to strikes from Glenn Murray, but goals from Andy Reid and Billy Sharp – the latter in stoppage time – earned Forest a point.

“They could easily have put their heads down after Palace had taken the lead again in the last ten minutes, but they fought right to the death and that shows great character,” the former Birmingham City and Aston Villa chief said.

The Scotsman added: “I was delighted with the crowd, too. They appreciated what the players were doing and I think the excitement they created gave the fans the impetus to roar us on.”

Bristol City manager Derek McInnes urged his side to kick on, after a 4-2 home win over fellow strugglers Peterborough United. “It was a huge result, and one we must use as a springboard,” he said.

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