As we look forward to our local game against Salford City, I thought it would be appropriate to give a ‘behind the scenes’ update.
Like a great deal of other clubs and businesses we have been hit hard by this terrible virus, losing key people within each department at important times on the football and non-footballing sides.
By abiding by government instructions and EFL protocols we have had people through household requirements isolating as well as those unfortunately contracting the virus itself. Being honest, this has left us light at times in some departments, but I am proud of the staff who have filled in the gaps with great energy, intelligence and professionalism. I am lucky to have inherited a great group but I always believe in getting stuck in myself and being assistant kit man at Southend was an experience I never thought would happen, but I bizarrely thoroughly enjoyed it and we obviously won which helps.
I would like to thank all supporters and commercial partners for their patience and understanding throughout these trying times, we are not at full power, but we are genuinely trying our best.
In addition, to the Latics supporters who are also continuing to back the club through iFollow. I appreciate there are and were problems across the EFL network in the week on this platform, but they have assured us this is being rectified as a matter of urgency.
On average we are around the 500 mark for each game in terms of additional passes sold. This obviously helps us for home games, whilst with away fixtures the first 500 goes to the hosts.
Here’s the numbers from October; Colchester (A - 469), Morecambe (H - 474), Bolton (A - 597), Carlisle (H - 416), Port Vale (H - 509) and Southend (A - 580). These are in addition to the 800 average who also redeem their codes for home league games as season ticket holders.
I know there are issues with fans that are deep rooted and my job with the help of the Board at Oldham Athletic is to try and address these, I totally appreciate that some feelings may be so strong that people will not change their views and you have your absolute right to be that way.
However, we go into Saturday on the back of a win. I can tell you going to Southend on a very cold Tuesday evening and winning is a great result all-round. We need to move on positively and as much as possible, we need to move on together.
I have previous with Salford City and I have a great deal of respect for the owners and the hardworking committee they have there, I thoroughly enjoyed working with them in the early days of their new story. Some of the staff I class as friends but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to come away with three points from Moor Lane, nothing would give me more pleasure. We have to get some momentum now to our season and Harry, his backroom staff and players are fully committed towards that.
Do what you need to do, say what you need to say tonight if you want to get things off your chest, but all I ask is for that hour or so leading up to Saturday's game and during you stay positive and get behind the lads as much as you can, so we can start climbing the table which will also ultimately help every aspect of the club heading into the Christmas period and beyond.
It’s still unclear when fans will be allowed back into Boundary Park and I am understandably receiving emails from supporters wanting to know what the options are for their season tickets. A quick answer to that is I will be working on some ideas next week and will communicate where we are up to in due course. It has taken some time to understand what offers have been made for previous seasons and those in place for the current season, I need to get a free run to see how things look both operationally and financially before I can commit. I thank you for your continued patience and understanding on this matter as well.
I also had a good trip down to St Albans to see our manufacturers, Hummel, on Thursday to look at ideas for kits for next season including travel and training wear. We will be putting the kits out to fans to choose which they prefer again, please join in, it is important we get a good number to support this initiative. I have also had some internal chats regarding the crest/badge going forwards and again we will put out some options on social media for you to vote on in due course to get the strength of feeling again to assist with any decision making process.
On a separate matter, my desire is for the club to work closer with our Community Trust and we have started to look at a joint project with regards to leading up to Christmas. We will again announce our intentions soon as it’s vital that the club uses its position to continue to support good local causes.
Finally, I hope you enjoy Saturday night after a positive result and have a few virtual or socially distanced beers with your substantial meal!
You do make a difference on and off the pitch with your passion, believe me.
Thanks as always,