Clayton, especially, looks to have his work cut out, following the news that Les Snowdon, his trusty No2 as the Daily Mail's sports editor, is to leave Derry Street to take up a new job as Scottish editor for The Times.
The Mail is one of the last bastions of an old-style sports desk, with plenty of reporters and production staff to manage, as well as to try to break the occasional story, all operating these days alongside the click-bait team working on Mail Online's sports coverage.
Snowdon has worked in Scotland before, having been editor of the Scottish sports coverage for the Sunday Times and as well being the editor of Scotland on Sunday before joining the Mail five years ago.
Both Snowdon and Alford are due to begin new jobs in January, Alford, according to a report on the website of the Sports Journalists' Association, moving to Sky Sports at Osterley as head of digital media.
With Neil Robinson, the former head of sport for The Independent, Independent on Sunday, i and the Evening Standard, having been sidelined to a night editor's role to make way when Dunn was appointed, it has been left to Gatward to pick up the pieces of the spendthrift three months when the Indy titles suddenly started pretending that they had the budget of The Sun sports desk.
The spending - on the likes of 600-quid-a-time football columnists such as Terry Venables, or the six-figure deal for Paul Scholes - is now being recouped through drastic cuts to the papers' already slender budgets for casual subs and reporters' travel.
Dunn arrived accompanied by his former buddy from The Sun and News of the World, Tim Allan; Allan was only ever on a short-term deal, and he is understood to be among the applicants for the role of "sports editorial executive" - effectively sports editor of the IoS and the i. Interviews were held last week, and an appointment expected to be made any time now.
Over at Canary Wharf, and Walker has been given an early opportunity to make his mark on the Daily Mirror's sports pages.
Walker won the game of musical chairs at Trinity Mirror's titles in the summer, as he was promoted from the Sunday Mirror, while People sports editor James Brown left the building (to re-surface at The Sun).
But two key members of staff leaving in quick succession might have come as a shock so early in Walker's reign.
To lose your football corr, in Martin "Laptop" Lipton, who's been recruited as the new deputy sports editor at The Sun , and then also have your chief sports writer in Ollie Holt defect to the Mail on Sunday, where he is to be the "new Patrick Collins", might be a double blow for Walker.
Apparently not so. According to one Trinity Mirror sports desker who was in a football press box at the weekend, "David sees it as his chance to bring in or promote those people he really rates. Nothing lasts forever, and Laptop and Ollie had both been fixtures at the Mirror for a while. David can now mix things up, without having to elbow anyone aside."
Early suggestions are that Andy Dunn, a Walker favourite when he edited the Sunday Mirror's sports pages, could figure prominently.