There's no other way of saying it, I was totally flabbergasted when Oldham appointed Lee Johnson as the club's new manager on Monday. The club is close to my heart, I wish him all the best and passionately hope he can get the club out of trouble but I'm still struggling to see the logic of the decision.

At 31, he's The Football League's youngest manager. I'm all for fresh faces in the dugout but I'm not convinced, with Oldham in the situation the club is in and games running out, that it's the right time or place to give such a young man his first crack at management. I hope I'm wrong. The club says it had 120 applicants to succeed Paul Dickov, which suggests there were plenty of more experienced managers available, and this stage of the season I really believe an old head rather than someone for the future was what was really needed.

Fair play to Lee, the side's 3-0 win against Hartlepool United on Tuesday night was a fantastic start. Most importantly it got them out of the relegation places but he'd been in the job less than 48 hours and the real tests are yet to come.

My big worry is if the appointment is a kind of acknowledgement by the club that they're resigned to relegation and they believe Lee is the right man to begin the rebuilding process in npower League 2 next season. That would be a defeatist attitude and misplaced. The team are in serious trouble but there's still genuine hope with nine games to play.

Stevenage have sacked Gary Smith, which came as a shock after they thumped Sheffield United 4-0 on Saturday. True, they lost 2-0 at Bury on Tuesday but after such a convincing win over the Blades and Boro safe, the timing still feels strange.

It's funny because before the news broke, I was going to talk about Stevenage striker Dani Lopez. He scored a hat-trick while he was out on loan in npower League 2 with Barnet and then seven days later got a second treble for Stevenage in the win over Sheffield United after Gary recalled him.

I think that might be an unprecedented achievement but it all seems a bit academic now because Gary's lost his job and the club have put captain Mark Roberts in caretaker charge.

The Bury match was the end for Gary but it was great result for Kevin Blackwell's side and after revealing three or four of his players are currently turning out for free, you've got to admire his ability to get the squad up for the fight. The Shakers will still be short odds to go down with the bookies but they've given themselves a glimmer of hope.

Hearing about players who aren't on a wage isn't a rare story these days, is it? It's a graphic example of the way the game is changing to balance the books and it's obviously dawning on more and more players that they have to be willing to initially forget about a contract to prove themselves.

As an ex-player, I'd once have said it was a scandal to expect someone to play professional football for nothing but I think everyone in the game these days has to be more realistic about what clubs can and cannot afford.

It was a good night on Tuesday for Swindon Town with a 2-0 win against Yeovil at Huish Park and it's probably a good time to say a quick word at the job Kevin Macdonald has done since he arrived at the County Ground.

There was so much hype surrounding Paolo Di Canio's departure that Kevin's appointment also went under the radar but he's quietly about his business and two wins, a draw and just one defeat - away to Brentford - isn't a bad return.

Of course he inherited a squad full of confidence, riding high and geared up for promotion but replacing a high profile manager is a challenge in itself before you even get to the football side of things. It hasn't seemed to phase Kevin and he's obviously drawing on all those years of experience as assistant manager at Aston Villa.

Which brings me back to where I started. Kevin was the ideal man to pick up the reins because Swindon needed a man with bags of experience to finish the job di Canio started. Although they're at the other end of the table, I still believe Oldham needed a similar kind of new manager.