Blitz gives his views

Last updated : 10 January 2006 By Dave Moore
Latics joint owner Simon Blitz issued a statement in the Southend matchday programme summing up his feelings after the Christmas period. He said,

"Well that was not the worst Christmas we could have had! Congratulations to our Manager of the month, Ronnie as well as all the coaches and players. It's amazing what a few results can do for moral and I am sure it will be reflected with a huge gate today as we look to get into the playoff positions against the team that are top of the league. (Well, all right then, a decent crowd)."

"Over the last week we have had many discussions at board level as to where we go from here. Already we are receiving calls and e-mails suggesting which players we should bring in. In fact if we took everyone mentioned then at least that would stop every other team from being able to buy/sign or loan a player. I for one believe that we need to stick to our plan. When I was asked back in August what I considered to be a successful season I stated that finishing in the top ten would represent a great deal of improvement and at the same time allow us to concentrate on getting the club to run on a realistic budget."

"My thoughts have not changed although there is nothing we would like more than to get promotion to the Championship. However I do not think that just because we are on the brink of a playoff spot it is an excuse to go out and spend money and sign more players. This to me would, apart from offering no guarantees, be a dereliction of duty and risk undoing a lot of the good work that we have put in. Don't get me wrong, the temptation is great and there are days when the heart tries to rule the head but the bottom line is we are on course to lose well in excess of £700,000 this year and to add more debt is just irresponsible."

"There will of course be those who will claim the owners are showing a lack of ambition and don't care about the club but I am sure the vast majority will understand where we are coming from. There are however a few scenarios that could alter the above. The first being the possibility of players sold or loaned out to other clubs. Should this happen then we have told the manager that he will be able to use that money to strengthen his squad as he sees fit. The second possibility is an upturn in attendance, which could impact on our finances."

"I am not saying this to try and drum up support but more from a practical point of view. Being in the top six should hopefully bring some of the less regular fans to the game and if we see that our forecasted income is improving we will also allow the manager to bring in a player on loan. (The deadline for players moving on loan is towards the end of March) Apart from that, I would on behalf of myself and the two other Amigos and all our Directors like to wish you and your families a happy and healthy new year. Try and get behind the team, especially at home, because when I speak to them they tell me it really makes a difference."

Simon Blitz