In an exclusive interview, Moore addresses his shock exit from the Owls for the first time, explaining why transfer targets rather than his own salary was the key issue of conflict with chairman Dejphon Chansiri after League One play-off win
Darren Moore is convinced he could have taken Sheffield Wednesday back to the Premier League had he remained in charge – and insists his departure had nothing to do with his salary.
The head coach led Wednesday to League One play-off final glory in May, with Josh Windass scoring a dramatic extra-time winner over Barnsley. It capped a remarkable campaign which had seen the club rack up 96 points and then pull off a stunning fightback from 4-0 behind in their play-off semi-final with Peterborough.
However, three weeks after their Wembley triumph, Moore left the club by mutual consent.
Wednesday have since gone on to lose each of their first three games in the Championship under new boss Xisco Munoz, while speculation around the reasons for Moore’s departure have continued.
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Speaking for the first time since his exit in an exclusive interview with Sky Sports News senior reporter Tim Thornton, Moore explained why he and the club parted ways and insisted it had nothing to do with contract demands.
Instead, transfer targets to support the club’s step up to the Championship were a key issue when he met chairman Dejphon Chansiri to make plans for the new season.
“After Wembley and the dust had settled, we had a meeting, the chairman and myself, to continue what was discussed in the build-up to it,” he said.
“I’m clear on record saying irrespective of what division the club was in our targets were set in mind.
“When we had the meeting, the vision set at that timescale was just a little bit out of line.
“Amicably we came to an agreement at the time and decided it wasn’t right. The decision was made for me to step away and the club to continue.
“That’s why, a lot of noise was made at the time, but I never said anything because my emphasis was to allow Sheffield Wednesday to continue and move forward and allow the chairman to bring in a manager of his choice that he felt would take the club forwards. I’ve got no grievance with that decision.
“It was a private conversation between me and him. I know there was a lot said about the salary – but it was never about the money side of it. It was purely and strictly about the football.
“Anybody who knows me, I’m energised by the football, I love the competition of the football. Ever since I’ve become a manager I’ve been energised by the job and I was really energised by Sheffield Wednesday.
“I didn’t expect to be sitting here but we understand football and we wish the club well and I’m ready for the next adventure.”
Asked if, with time and backing, he could have taken Wednesday back to the Premier League – a division they haven’t competed in since 2000 – Moore was adamant.
“Absolutely,” he said. “When I first had my interview with the chairman that was the desire.
“The size and capacity of Sheffield Wednesday, it’s a club with wonderful history and tradition of playing in the top flight, a fan base as big as anybody, a passionate fan base that wants top-flight football.
“We know nothing is done overnight but I felt… going into the third season [of his reign], I think the club is perfectly poised to build on those solid foundations.
“The Championship is a hard league, some top players in there but at Sheffield Wednesday we have top players, a passionate, loyal support base and the club is back at the level they deserve to be at and I sincerely wish they’re able to kick on from here.”
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