Sol Campbell ‘hurt’ at not getting interview at League One club for job he applied twice for


Sol Campbell says he’s been ‘hurt’ at not getting an interview at League One club Portsmouth for a job he applied twice for in recent years.

The former footballer often expresses how annoyed he’s become at not being considered for managerial vacancies in the EFL. 

Since starting at the bottom of League Two with Macclesfield, and then at Southend, two clubs who were in dire straits when he took over, Sol applied for 16 managerial roles between 2020 and 2021.

Campbell arrived at Macclesfield Town in November 2018, who were then then bottom of EFL and five points adrift of safety, but he managed them to a miracle, finishing 22nd, three points above the bottom two relegation places.

They stayed up on the last day of the campaign. He oversaw eight wins and 12 draws in his 30 games in charge and it was announced in August 2019 that Campbell would be leaving the financially troubled club, by mutual agreement, then in December 2019, Campbell backed a HM Revenue and Customs bid to wind-up the club, claiming to be owed £180,000.

He hasn’t managed since leaving the Shrimpers on the 30th of June 2020. It was in October 2019 that he was appointed manager of the then League One club, watched his new side lose 7–1 to Doncaster and then took charge for his first game, a 3–1 home loss against Ipswich, but financial constraints meant Campbell couldn’t sign any new players during the January 2020 transfer window and in June 2020, the season was ended early due to Covid. Southend were second from bottom, 16 points from safety.

Following a decision not to restart the season, Southend were relegated to League Two and he Campbell left the club on the 30th of June 2020.

These days, he’s still applying for jobs, and is regularly being denied an opportunity on the touchline again.

He has spoken to The News Portsmouth about how he applied to become manager of Pompey twice and they chose to go against interviewing him.


He said: ‘Please give me the honour of hearing me out, I deserve that at least, 45 minutes of your time.

‘I had to ring Pompey the first time to ask Mark Catlin whether he had received my CV. That’s what hurts me more. If I can’t even get an interview at a club where I did well at, where can I get a job?

‘The second time I applied was before John Mousinho. My agent rang up and was told by Andy Cullen it wasn’t the road they were looking to go down, they wanted a leader. I wasn’t asking for the job, just to have a conversation.

‘I did an amazing job at Pompey and now you don’t even want to give me a meeting in person. I don’t even deserve a 45-minute meeting with the hierarchy to see my philosophy and how I look at football?

‘I have nothing against previous managers, but the club were happy to listen and employ the Cowley brothers, who started off as PE teachers. Yet they wouldn’t want to sit down with me, who captained his country and Pompey. It’s hard to take.

‘I’m not trying to bash anyone or throw people under a bus – and I’m not saying I should get the job. Just the chance to be interviewed.

‘All I want is to succeed and it hurts when a club you’ve captained, given blood, sweat and tears for, doesn’t want to give you the time of day. It hurts.

‘I played for England around the world, qualified for tournaments, been under pressure, I know what it means to be at the top and I know what Pompey means to the fans.

‘Some people have managed clubs, relegated clubs, and then got new jobs and still done really, really badly. The Leeds manager (Jesse Marsch) was sacked after almost relegating them and was then wanted by Southampton.

‘There are other managers who have had 4-5 jobs in the Football League with money and done nothing.

‘Yet Macclesfield was the only job offered to me before Southend. I had to take the bottom club in the Football League, nothing else – and I kept them up.

‘There’s no logic to it anymore.

‘At Southend, I couldn’t get anyone in, they were under an embargo and nobody had told me. It was extremely tough.

‘I could get people off the books, which I did, but couldn’t even get players on loan because it involved money. I didn’t know that when I went in. I was only told at the back end of January 2020.

‘Look at Southend, they went down under me in a pandemic season which finished with nine games left. Then down again. Surely people can see I had a bad deal there?

‘If you cannot rationalise that, then you obviously have a fixed picture of me and you don’t want to move from that. I’m not going to change your mind about who I am.’

You can also see what he had to say on an accusation aimed at him, read on by clicking on the story below…

This is what fans said after seeing Sol Campbell was left ‘hurt’ at not getting an interview at League One club for a job he applied twice for…

@alex89_11: Finally some good news.

@DanLewis1999: I mean I get what he’s saying BUT look at what he’s done as a manager so far…not really been a success has he?

@bucklandbear: He’d have been a crap manager though so never mind eh

@MarkDangerNagle: His managerial track record has been dreadful. That’s why he didn’t get an interview

@Lin_Pompey: Get over it. 🤷‍♀️

@Fazzzzerr: maybe take on some more jobs and gain more experience

@EL_Clee: Any tissues?

“I wasn’t asking for the job, just a conversation”
“The club were happy to employ the Cowley brothers, who started off as PE teachers, but not someone who had captained England and Pompey”
Deluded. Jesus christ he feels entitled just because of his playing career #pompey

@pompeyshaun1986: I loved Sol as a player but his record as a manager isn’t great. That is why he doesn’t get looked at.

@bucklandbear: He managed to get involved in two clubs where money was a bit of an issue & ended up leaving. I don’t see his general attitude as a good fit for our players or club. Great player but not a people person.

@PompeyChimes90: So? Why should he be entitled to get an interview because he played for us before, won the FA cup and waived his compensation? He’s not said it in words, but what he’s said is insinuating just that. That being said, I wouldn’t have him as manager.

@ThePurpleLurple: There are almost 400 people with the UEFA pro licence in the UK including Pompey’s Zesh who cut his teeth in the non league. I wish Sol all the luck in the world but in the words of the PE teacher ‘don’t get bitter, get better’

@reece_w99: Sensible from the club really. If news had come out that he was a genuine candidate for the job, it would be like Farnborough airshow above Fratton park

@LeeCrowhurst: “I have nothing against previous managers, but the club were happy to listen and employ the Cowley brothers, who started off as PE teachers. Yet they wouldn’t want to sit down with me, who captained his country and Pompey. It’s hard to take.” 🤨 #pompey

@mason_peddle: Why would he? Because he played a few years thinks he has the right.. strange bloke imo

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