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From the Boardroom - Terry Doyle
From the Boardroom - Terry Doyle

The Battle for survival - extract from match programme of 17 April

We welcome this afternoon the directors, players and supporters of Cheltenham Town. In particular, we give a warm welcome back to York City to John Ward, who started his managerial career here at Bootham Crescent.

Tuesday nights performance against Bury was full of pride and passion and showed how committed the players are to ensuring York City continues to play in the Football League. The wonderful, unceasing noise and support from the fans created an almost cup tie atmosphere and I almost believed we had twelve men out there on the pitch. It was only a string of spectacular saves from the Bury keeper that prevented us from gaining all three points. Lets maintain this fantastic spirit and support and cheer on the lads to a victory today.

As reported in the Evening Press last week, John Batchelor has yet to make any of the payments to the Football Club he agreed as part of taking the club out of administration. Jason McGill and I met with John last week to try to rectify the problem. He expressed one reason for withholding monies was a number of alleged abusive phone calls he had received from City fans. Although we made it clear we are not responsible for the actions of individuals, could I take this opportunity to ask supporters to refrain from making such calls and therefore giving credibility to Mr Batchelors claim. I expect the matter to be resolved shortly and hope that John Batchelor will do the honourable thing and fulfil his financial obligation and promise.

Like the players showed on Tuesday night, the Board of Directors also have the same passion and commitment to ensuring this club be playing in the Third Division next season. We are fully committed to giving Chris and Lee all the support they need to ensure we get those vital last few points. We are by no means adopting a defeatist attitude to this situation. We are survivors and with the help of the supporters, we will all fight to the end to stay in the Football League. Like any good business, we have had to look at all eventualities in order to have contingency plans in place to ensure professional football continues in the city of York. However, we maintain a positive attitude and have belief and confidence in our players and management team.

The problem we have is that for this season and probably for next season as well, we are still feeling the enormous impact of taking the club out of administration. We quite simply do not have the money that some other clubs currently have in this division. Look for example at Bristol Rovers who were able to bring in several new players in the week before transfer deadline, no doubt at a significant increase to their wage bill.

It is worth reminding everybody of the following financial aspects that have had to be managed and have impacted the Club:

The necessary abortive costs relating to Huntington Stadium

The non-payment of the John Batchelor money.

The repayment to the PFA for the wages paid by the Administrator whilst the club was in Administration.

The payment of significant amounts to the Inland Revenue.

Management of the budget to pay the wage deferments to the players in the summer.

I am sure you can understand from the above the background to this seasons budget and cashflow planning. It has all been about survival and ensuring professional football stays alive in the city of York.

Please once again raise your voices for the team today and remember, keep the faith.

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