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Brian Caldwell on the return of fans

4 December 2020


Brian Caldwell on the return of fans

4 December 2020

Brian Caldwell provides a December update.

Brian Caldwell gives his thoughts regarding the rescue package, the return of fans and the appointment of Steve Cotterill as Town's new Manager.

On the rescue package:

“It’s difficult to say how I feel about it right now because we currently don’t know the situation in full. I think a headline figure was put out with 30 million split up between League One and League Two. My initial reaction was a disappointment, the last League One meeting we had, we were given an impression that it would be a totally different situation and clubs our size would bring back a greater return. I don’t want to sound ungrateful but I think the outcome hasn’t been what a lot of clubs wanted.

“I think if you work out, it’s around 3.75million for every club. On reflection, it’s less than two months of wages. We’ve tried to do the right thing all the way through COVID, by paying the staff in full and the players in full. I sound ungrateful but when you’re only getting less than two months' wages covered, it’s not been the ideal outcome for us and we were hoping for more support since we made sure that we went about the situation by paying everyone in full and tried to do the right thing.

“I hope this isn’t the only support we get. A lot of clubs are struggling and don’t have the money to pay HMRC, so we’re worse off than before. It’s hard in football right now, for a lot of clubs.”

On fans returning:

“I thought the return of fans and the way we organised it to go was brilliant and it turned out brilliantly. Hats off to our safety officer and the team/ staff around him. I think absolutely everyone, from the officers to the stewards had a big role to do and they all made sure it went really well.

“Everyone complied and assisted us and we had back very good feedback from the Sports Ground Safety Authority that people felt safe so we are very happy about that. I’ve had a number of emails saying credit to the club and to see how well it all went was really positive. I think at the end of the day it was brilliant to see fans get back into the stadium, get a bit of atmosphere because closed doors games just don’t do it for me.”

“There are some minor tweaks that we will work on going into the next few games but it’s not an easy process and we have to make sure we keep improving every week.”

On new boss, Steve Cotterill:

“We spoke at a board level, when we spoke to Sam (Ricketts), he took it really well and in a very professional manner - that’s the guy he is. I think we needed someone through the door that has a bit of experience, instead of a young, upcoming manager.

“Steve’s CV is packed with promotions and manager of the year awards and for us, it was a bit of a no-brainer to get him in. We were delighted at how fast the deal was done, Steve and his representative allowed things to flow smoothly and quickly which to do in just under 48 hours was remarkable. It was a hectic week with games and Steve coming in.

“You can see why he’s such a successful manager, he’s honest, has a great understanding of the game and you can’t fault his work ethic. He ticks every box at the time we were looking for a manager and we believe he can get us on the right track and start to move the team forward and up the table in doing so. I think as the fans get to know him and start to see him at the touch-line, they will see how he’s starting to get us back on track already.

“The games are now coming thick and fast so Steve has very little time to make sure he implements his ideas to the lads and improve the squad. He’s one of these guys who will be at the training ground until 8:45 at night, he’s a real football guy and I hope he can bring success to Shrewsbury."


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