ABERDEEN’S senior players spoke up for Jim Goodwin.
Now Richard Foster insists it’s high time they did their talking out on the park.
Goodwin has kept his job at Pittodrie for now[/caption]
The bombshell news out of Pittodrie was that Goodwin had been given an extraordinary stay of execution.
Expecting to be handed his P45 by owner Dave Cormack, he was instead given time.
It was far from a ringing endorsement.
Cormack had made it perfectly clear following Monday’s debacle in Darvel that results and performances must improve.
Foster told SunSport: “I don’t think anyone was expecting to hear that Goodwin was staying in the job.
“After losing to Darvel he looked to be doomed.
“He’s been in the game long enough to know the consequences of a result like that.
“How long that backing lasts remains to be seen.
“But the thing now is that the players need to show that they really do support him and it’s not just words.
“Because the way they played in Ayrshire on Monday night didn’t look like a group playing for their manager.”
Goodwin was fully expecting to pay for that shock result with his job.
He spent the day shopping in Glasgow with his wife knowing the Dons board were meeting to discuss his future.
It seemed inevitable the axe would fall.
Yet Cormack has refused to bow to the supporters who are demanding action now and vowed to give his manager time to turn things around.
The inference in his shock statement, however, was that winning in Edinburgh on Saturday wasn’t negotiable.
Foster added: “The Aberdeen board have given Goodwin one last chance.
“Now it’s up to the players to show that they’re genuinely behind him.
“On Monday night, I just didn’t see any characters out on the pitch for Aberdeen.
“There were no personalities to say, ‘We are not losing here tonight.’
No one was willing to take that game by the scruff of the neck.
“Whether that’s because they are all too nice and a bit soft, or because they don’t fancy the manager, I don’t know.
“But it didn’t look great on the players.
“Look, Goodwin is fortunate he wasn’t sacked after that result, as managers don’t tend to survive defeats like those.
“But for me it’s the players who need to take a long, hard look at themselves.
“If you can’t, as professionals, have enough about you to go out on the pitch and give your all in a game like that, then it says something about you.
“In Darvel they just didn’t look like they were prepared to do what was necessary. They weren’t prepared to out-work Darvel or out-run Darvel, or make tackles or win second balls — all the ugly stuff you have to do in a game like that.
“They virtually accepted the result.
“I know that they had a little flurry towards the end of the game when Darvel began to tire, but it just wasn’t good enough.
“They didn’t give their manager everything they had.
“Listen, you don’t need to love your boss at your work.
“Away from football people will often have managers they don’t particularly like. I know football is slightly different from other jobs, but you should still respect the person in charge.
“Those Aberdeen players just didn’t look like they were willing to put their heads on the block for Goodwin.
“And it looked like they had given up.
“Saturday is their chance to prove they haven’t.”
Foster made more than 230 appearances for Aberdeen and saw enough managers come and go to know when players have downed tools.
The 37-year-old added: “It was Ebbe Skovdahl when I signed as a young boy, then Steve Paterson, Jimmy Calderwood, Mark McGhee and Craig Brown.
“They all left the club for different reasons. McGhee sent me out on loan to Rangers when I was the only full-back at the club, so that says enough about him.
“Players are selfish. When things aren’t going well they don’t think about the manager, they think about themselves.
“They look at it purely from their own point of view and stop thinking about the guy in charge or the team.
“It’s never even a conscious thing. I’ve never been at the club when there’s been a discussion about downing tools.
“It’s just a rot that creeps in and that comes with poor results.
“That leads to negativity that comes from all angles and suddenly there’s no going back.” Goodwin has been backed in the transfer market and been given the funds to bring in the players he wanted.
Foster added: “The squad is an amalgamation of three different managers now.
“Having said that, there was a huge turnaround in the summer and I believe nine of the team that started the other night were his players.
“And the only one for them who did anything in the game was the young boy, the winger, Ryan Duncan.
“He didn’t get any assistance from any team-mates, though.
“And none of them did enough to help their manager at a time when he desperately needed them.”