Jon Lansdown targets ten wins from 20 games for Bristol City to stay in the Championship
BRISTOL City's next manager will be set a stiff target of ten wins from the final 20 games of the season. That is what Robins managing director Jon Lansdown believes is needed if the club is to retain its Championship status and avoid an unwanted return to League One.
Saturday's 4-0 home defeat to Leicester – City's 13th loss in the last 19 outings – sent the team back to the foot of the table.
And wins for fellow strugglers Sheffield Wednesday and Barnsley mean the Robins are now six points adrift of safety and in need of a remarkable upturn in fortunes if they are to stave off the threat of relegation for a second successive season.
That situation was unacceptable to City's directors, who took the decision to part company with McInnes at a hastily-convened board meeting immediately following the final whistle.
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Lansdown emerged from that meeting to set a survival target of 52 points.
He said: "We had a meeting after the game; we're not in a good place and have decided to relieve Derek of his duties.
"It's a decision from the board. Derek is disappointed, but he does understand. It is a decision we felt we had to make for the good of the football club.
"We are looking to get 52 points; it depends what other people do – we might need to get less. But, realistically, we need to be focusing on what is our best chance of getting ten wins or 30 points out of the next 20 games.
"We felt this was the best time to do it, making the decision – that our best chance is with someone else (in charge).
"There is no hiding the fact it wasn't a good day (against Leicester). We wouldn't be here talking about it if it was."
Saturday's performance and result proved the final straw for a board who had backed McInnes in the transfer market and given him an extended run of games in which to effect a turnaround in fortunes.
And a meagre return of 12 points from the last 19 games left Lansdown and his fellow directors with no choice but to make a change.
He said: "Derek has a lot of qualities to make him a very good manager and I think he can go on to do that.
"We felt with the run of results we have had and the performances recently, that it was the time to make the decision. He has been good to work with and we gave him every opportunity to succeed here.
"But we're looking at ourselves from now until the end of the season.
"We want to give ourselves the best possible chance to get out of where we are now.
"We have 20 games to do it. If we win half of them, we will stay up and that is exactly what we want to do."