Burton Albion manager Nigel Clough has lifted the lid on the club’s decision to sell midfielder Jackson Irvine to Hull City last month, via BBC Radio Derby.
The 24-year-old only moved to the Pirelli Stadium last year following spells north of the border at Ross County and Celtic, although he never actually made a first team appearance for the latter during his three-year spell in Glasgow.
Nonetheless, the Australia international certainly did his bit to help Clough’s Brewers avoid relegation from the Championship last season, with the midfielder netting ten goals in 42 league appearances to inspire them to a 20th place finish in the second tier, a point clear of the bottom three.
And his excellent efforts for Burton last term unsurprisingly attracted much interest from several Championship clubs, but it was Leonid Slutsky’s Hull who got a deal done for Irvine on the penultimate day of the summer window.
And Burton boss Clough, who himself brought in several new additions to bolster his squad over the summer, has lifted the lid on their decision to sell Irvine, coming to the conclusion that it was indeed the right one.
He said: ‘He did well and scored some important goals but the biggest over-riding factor was that he wanted to go.
‘Once that’s the case we get the best deal we can for the club and move on.
‘We made a very good return on what we paid for him.’
These comments are sure to intrigue Burton supporters, who have seen their side bounce back from losing their first three matches to beat Birmingham City and draw with Sheffield Wednesday, moving them up to 21st in the division.
And they will play their first game without Irvine when they travel to high-flying and unbeaten Leeds United on Saturday.
The Verdict: The closer the transfer window came to slamming shut, the more optimistic Burton Albion fans would have become that their prized asset Jackson Irvine would remain at the club.
The midfielder was a key, and perhaps the main, reason why the Brewers remained in the second tier last term, but they will have to find a way of doing it without him this time round as Hull City signed the Australia international on the penultimate day of the window.
And although this will have frustrated several Burton fans, Nigel Clough’s comments suggest that it was in the best interests of both the player and the club to let Irvine leave, what with the 24-year-old himself wanting a move away.
Keeping a player who wants a move is always a big gamble, but with the money coming in for the midfielder, it made complete sense for Burton to let the Australian leave.
Burton fans… what do you make of the news? Let us know your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!