Grantham Town FC interim chair Sophie Cope has broken the silence on the behind the scenes at the club.
In a statement issued this week she says…
There has been a lot of negativity at the club over the past 4 to 6 weeks and it’s taken its toll on a lot of people. Tough decisions have been made on a weekly basis and they’ve not been taken lightly, but always with the best interests of the club at their core.
We are constantly assessing the situation and are aware of all the statistics but we have to face facts and be realistic in our decision making. The current reality is the football club has been operating in this league for the past three / four years on one of the lowest budgets in the league and football has moved on around us. We’ve been punching above our weight for so long but now we find ourselves struggling to remain competitive. It is also worth remembering that there are several teams in our league who have aspirations to play in the Football League, and are resourcing themselves to achieve those aims as quickly as possible.
Last season we hired and fired managers and never really got going. We had players coming in that struggled with the standard of NPL-level football, and despite an inconsistent season, narrowly escaped relegation. This season we’ve stuck with a management team who are working on a shoestring budget, but despite being the lowest budget in the league they have brought in quality players from this level and the league above. Yes, we’ve had a lot of players in and out, but we’ve got the nucleus now of a very good young side who in time, with patience and support, will without doubt be a team to watch.
We now have 15 games to steady the ship and I’m urging the fans to get behind the players, the management team and the board to push the club through these difficult times. We can stay at this level if we pull together and get behind the team; the away support at Bamber Bridge on Saturday being an excellent example of the fans that travelled getting behind the team.
We are now in advanced discussions and negotiations with three new potential investors, who are well connected, both with local businesses and in football, and could prove excellent additions to the fabric of this football club. It’s been said many times before but if the Town doesn’t get behind the football team, then there will be no football team. Any club is worth nothing without its fans and vice versa.
A lot of the people currently work hard behind the scenes (daily) do it all voluntarily and some of the comments that I’ve read on social media have been very hard to take. I’ve asked myself over the past few weeks why we continue to invest our time effort and money to ensure we have a football club? The answer is simple – for the love of our football club.
If we can get the deal over the line and agree a deal to bring the investors in, it will be the biggest shake-up off the field for a number of years and will be the beginning of a new era for our football club, which is what everyone connected with the Gingerbreads will want.