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‘Most dysfunctional squad I’ve worked with’ – Dulwich Hamlet boss doesn’t hold back on his assessment


Hakan Hayrettin has described Dulwich Hamlet’s squad last season as the “most dysfunctional” he has worked with.

Hamlet were relegated on the final day of the National League South campaign on goal difference after a 1-0 home defeat to Chippenham Town.

Dulwich conceded 89 goals in 46 matches – the most in the division – as their five-season stay at that level came to an end.

It was announced last week that Hayrettin, who has won a league title with Maidstone and promotion with Grays Athletic during his managerial career, would be staying on alongside assistant Terry Harris.

“It was the toughest changing room I have been involved in,” Hayrettin told the South London Press.

“You need harmony and togetherness – a collective approach. You need an attitude where you don’t accept defeat, but if you do, it hurts you.

“In this changing room, there was none of that. There was no empathy, firstly, for themselves, then no empathy for the badge of the team.

“Win, lose or draw, they were happy, it seemed, doing what they were doing. The attitude was: ‘We’re going to stay up.’

“Well, it doesn’t work like that. It was the most dysfunctional squad I have had the pleasure of working with.

“We had players saying they were fit, then pulling out of training. We had players that we relied on to play, but then they couldn’t play because we came in and pushed them to play harder.

“It was the only reason why we got the results – we made them push themselves to their limits. Some of them found it difficult to cope with the pace we wanted to play at.

“But it’s a clean slate and a clean approach. This year is going to be one voice and with one aim and purpose. We want to try and do as best as we possibly can. It was just sad to see how certain things developed last season.”

Dulwich announced last week that they are in talks with Charlie Grainger, Cameron Thompson, George Porter, Joe Felix and Kreshnic Krasniqi over new deals at the club.

“I have always liked George Porter,” said Hayrettin.

“Joe Felix, who I have had before, did well last season for the football club.”

Picture: Keith Gillard

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