Chairman: Deals must be right

Chairman Colin Gordon discusses transfer speculation, player progress and more…

Kidderminster Harriers' Chairman Colin Gordon before the match against Birmingham City' at the Aggborough Stadium

With Ed Williams among the names attracting big headlines this season, Chairman Colin Gordon says Harriers fans can remain confident about the future of Aggborough’s top talent.

Williams, who took his tally for the club to ten for the season with a brace at Bradford on Saturday, has made a blistering start to new campaign – form that has not gone unnoticed.

With media reports ‘linking’ the former Gloucester man with an imminent move away from Aggborough, the Chairman has moved swiftly to ease supporters’ fears – and called upon fans to be confident that the club will never allow any player to leave unless deals are right for all concerned.

Harriers were, after all, named a top developer of footballing talent in non-league by a Scout 7, part of Opta Pro, earlier this year. It’s this kind of accolade, and the years of work that goes into recruiting new talent that gives the club a very unique position within football.

So, while fans of many clubs spend the winter worrying about losing their favourite players with little say in the matter, Colin insisted Harriers supporters should put faith in the club to ensure they’re always looked after.

Citing the likes of Ousmane Fane, Luke Maxwell and Emmanuel Sonupé as just a few examples of the good work the club has done in the past, he told “I understand that it’s probably a natural reflex for fans at our level to worry about losing players when they start attracting interest, I really think we’ve done enough work to deserve the benefit of the doubt and some respect when it comes to the squad here.

“…It’s probably a natural reflex for fans to worry about losing players. I really think we’ve done enough work to deserve the benefit of the doubt.”

As the Opta report showed last season, our recruitment and the work that goes into it really is second to none, and the fact that players like Ed Williams are doing so well for us at the moment is the result of the fact that we had been looking at him for 18 months before signing up and because he’s working with a good manager and a good group of players.

“We’ve been talking about it since we came into the club – that’s the entire philosophy of what we are doing here; to identify that young talent that we think we can further improve and give opportunities to. They don’t go on to bigger and ‘better’ things unless its right for everyone, and that won’t change.

“Never in my time here have we been forced to cash in on a player or to sell them for less than we think they’re worth, and the only instances have moved on in that regard are when we have no control over it – the likes of Arthur Gnahoua and Elton Ngwatala who moved on for free because of their age and contractual situation.

“When it comes to developing young, talented footballers, we don’t ‘cash in’ and never would – that would be against our own philosophy and, apart from anything else, breaks the word we give to players coming here that, if they do well, we will provide them with the ability to move on at the right time.”

Williams signed for Harriers in the summer, the terms within his contract ensuring that the player is committed to Aggborough for at least the next 18 months. That may not stop the interest in him or in any of Aggborough’s other top performers, but nor should it, says the Chairman.

He added: “I just want supporters to have a little bit of faith that we’re good at what we do. We won’t be losing Ed Williams in the January or the summer unless everything about a deal for him is right – it’s that simple.

“…we’ve created a platform whereby we can identify people, bring them in, and allow them to do what they’re good at…”

“But he’s playing well and enjoying his football – he’s someone who doesn’t have to worry about what happens in January or in the summer because he knows we’ll do what’s best for him and best for the club.

“The fact he’s attracting big interest – and isn’t by any means the only player at the club to do so – is a great thing and long may that continue because it means more young players are getting noticed and being given a chance to perform.”

Colin feels the sentiments can be shared off the field at Aggborough, too.

He went on to say: “I remember reading comments when Neil was appointed that we’d gone for someone with no managerial record and who was unproven, but he’s again a perfect example of us being able to identify the right kind of people.

“He’s had a good start here and works tirelessly, just as John Eustace did before him who everyone else thought was too risky a gamble and look where he is working now.

“We’ve lost analysts to the EFL and one of our groundstaff to the Premier League, all because we’ve created a platform whereby we can identify people, bring them in, and allow them to do what they’re good at, while we keep on doing what we’re good at.

“It’s a constant ongoing process and that will benefit the club for now and many years to come.”

This article is about: Player News


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