IT was a fond farewell to Burton Albion for Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink as he departed the Pirelli Stadium reflecting on an incredible 12 months of success.
After accepting the vacant manager’s job at Championship QPR, Hasselbaink and assistant David Oldfield take up new challenges at Loftus Road but are proud to have left Burton Albion at the top of League One.
Hasselbaink says: “It was not easy following Gary Rowett, who was doing really well, but you always want to leave a club in a better position than when you took over. So we are very proud of the work we have done and to see where the club is at the moment. We are very happy with the progress we have made.
“We have improved the players and we have improved the club off the field. It is for somebody else now to take the club even further.”
Hasselbaink was appointed in November 2014 and by May 2015 had secured promotion from League Two with the club going up as champions.
Since then, the Brewers have continued their impressive form into their first season in the third tier of English football and Hasselbaink and Oldfield leave for QPR with Albion sitting at the top of League One as the season reaches its halfway point.
“We have had a magnificent year,” said Hasselbaink. “It has been a magnificent journey with the players for me, David and the rest of the staff. I would like to thank everyone for their support for the whole year, not only the players and the chairman but the people in the offices, the ground staff, those throughout the club. I want to thank everyone associated with Burton Albion who gave us that support and all that warmth and I wish you all the best for the future of the club. We will be looking at the results, supporting you guys and we will definitely be back watching a game soon. We have only good things to say about the club and only fond memories.”
Hasselbaink said farewell to the players before training yesterday.
He said: “I have spoken to the players and told them they have been absolutely magnificent for us. I have thanked them many, many times and will keep on thanking them and praising them as they deserve all the glory they have been getting. They have worked ever so hard and they need to keep on working hard. It has been a pleasure for us to work with this group. They have been a revelation.”
He also thanked the Brewers supporters for backing him all the way.
He said: “We are really happy with the fans, their support for us from day one and especially in the away games seeing them supporting the club, the players and coming on that journey with us - that was immense
“A big thank you to the supporters, they have been amazing to us.”
He also paid tribute to chairman Ben Robinson.
“Normally, the majority of managers don’t mention the chairman but I have had, still have and still will have in the future, a very good relationship with the chairman. He has been very supportive, very helpful in everything we wanted to do. He’s not held us back, he’s part of the success we have had and the year would not have been possible without him. He will stay a good friend to us and a very good man to know, an incredible person.”
Now it’s onto QPR for Hasselbaink and Oldfield and fresh opportunities.
Hasselbaink said: “It has been an amazing time but we have to move on and go for the next challenge.”