Doncaster launches inquiry

Aberdeen boss McInnes furious as Ladbrokes gambles on his future

Derek McInnesAberdeen boss Derek McInnes has expressed his anger at league sponsor Ladbrokes for its part in encouraging rumours that he was leaving Pittodrie.

Ladbrokes suspended betting on him being the next manager to part company with club just as it was handing him the manager of the month award. The betting company installed him as 4/1 favourite to succeed Gordon Strachan as Scotland coach.

Yesterday, after receiving a number of calls from the media, McInnes stated that the sponsor should be more responsible. It emerged that the rumour may have been started by a spoof Twitter account.

SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster was last night attempting to defuse the fall out after being contacted by Aberdeen CEO Duncan Fraser.

The bookmaker took on lead sponsorship of the Scottish Professional Football League in May, in a two-year deal worth about £4 million.

“For the main sponsors to be involved in instigating it, I think is disappointing,” said McInnes whose club sit top of the SPFL after a record breaking start to the season.

“They have a responsibility to work with the clubs, as main sponsor, and not work against clubs and managers. There have been other managers who have been put under pressure unnecessarily; the job is difficult enough.

“It isn’t helpful. Any sponsor should be working alongside clubs to try and foster relationships rather than work against them.”

Aberdeen had issued a statement stating that the rumours of McInnes’s departure were “without substance or foundation”.

It said: “The club can confirm Derek McInnes remains the manager of  Aberdeen Football Club.

“The various rumours which have been circulating this afternoon on social media are without substance and we would question the motivation of those individuals looking to unsettle the club.”

Earlier in the day Ladbrokes released a statement saying: “Betting odds on McInnes leaving Aberdeen has gone into meltdown according to Ladbrokes.

“The Dons boss has always been an outsider at 25/1 but after getting backed into 10/11 it left the bookmaker no option but to suspend the market.”



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