Morecambe skipper Barry Roche praises players’ response after Jim Bentley’s move to AFC Fylde

Morecambe skipper Barry Roche
Morecambe skipper Barry Roche

Morecambe captain Barry Roche has revealed just how affected the Shrimps’ players were by the departure of former boss Jim Bentley.

Rumours that Bentley’s time at the Globe Arena was coming to an end began to circulate prior to last Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Stevenage.

Forty-eight hours after that loss, which saw them drop to the bottom of League Two, the Shrimps said goodbye to Bentley after almost 17-and-a-half years as he became the new manager at AFC Fylde.

His departure meant Roche and Kevin Ellison are now overseeing first-team affairs until a replacement is appointed.

Roche said: “It was difficult, I’ve never seen so many men crying in a dressing room after Saturday.

“It was a difficult few hours and, on Monday, everyone was down so myself and Kev had a chat with the lads.

“We said that none of us want to be in this situation and we have to start climbing the table.

“We want a positive start from the lads and they have been fantastic in training this week; the attitude and desire have been spot-on.”

As the two elder statesmen of the dressing room, it was perhaps little surprise that Roche and Ellison were asked to make the move from dressing room to dugout.

However, as Roche admitted, it isn’t a position he’d prepared for but he’s happy to step up until the situation is fully resolved.

“I’d never considered being a manager and that’s the truth of it,” he said.

“I’m really excited about it but there’s been nothing said in terms of timescale.

“Jim has gone so we’re taking over team affairs until there’s a permanent manager appointed and that’s the way we’re looking at it.”