In response to an article published by the Bolton News on Friday afternoon, I would like to update you all on a few matters.
Both Dean Holdsworth and myself have now signed the accounts and they are with the auditors for filing. I hope this will assist us in getting the embargo lifted as soon as possible.
Negotiations with BluMarble are ongoing and we are still optimistic that a settlement will be achieved as they have agreed to my request for an adjournment of Monday’s Winding Up Petition hearing to enable both parties to continue negotiations.
Likewise, if and when this is settled it will greatly assist the club in getting the embargo lifted. I must emphasise the WUP relates to Sportshield BWFC and not the club or Inner Circle Investments Ltd as has been incorrectly reported elsewhere.
I have mentioned on several occasions before that the club has already embarked on a new era of financial stability and commercial prudence. It was very unfortunate that we had to let a number of players go at the end of last season but the facts are the club is not in a position to pay the salaries it has in the past and that we have to live within our budgets.
The days of paying players £20,000 per week are long gone for us and we are now working within affordable salary caps that have reduced the playing budget substantially.
Although we are now paying affordable salaries, in my opinion the quality and Championship experience of the players we now have is of a higher level than that of last season at a substantially reduced cost. Indeed, we have saved circa £5m on the players that have now departed even allowing for the cost of replacing the majority of them.
The pre-season fixtures start on Saturday with an away trip to our near neighbours Chorley. I’m sure quite a few of you will be in attendance and it will be good to see some of our new signings in action.
Next week, the players will be in Scotland for a training camp which will take in two fixtures against Arbroath and Dundee.
We have a few more friendly fixtures before we take on Stoke City at Macron Stadium later in the month prior to the start of the Sky Bet Championship.
I hope as many of you as possible support the team throughout the pre-season and start as we mean to go on throughout the 2017/18 campaign.
I’d like to welcome our latest acquisition, Stephen Darby, to the ranks. He’s a player Phil Parkinson knows really well from their time together at Bradford City.
One player who won’t be returning is Jay Spearing and I’d like to place on record our thanks for his service to the club over the past several years. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to come up with an agreement for him to stay but we all wish him well for his future.
Following on from last week’s news about Bolton Kia sponsoring the West Stand, we were delighted to confirm that local firm Carrs Pasties will be the sponsor of the North Stand. Carrs Pasties are a Bolton institution and have been supporters of the Club for a very long time. We are really pleased that they have taken this sponsorship. Special credit must go to our commercial team for all their hard work in bringing in this type of revenue to the club.
We have already surpassed the number of season tickets we sold at this stage last year with over 10,000 of you confirming your commitment to the cause. We are all truly grateful for your support.
There is still time for you to take advantage of the fantastic value a season ticket offers by purchasing your ticket ahead of our opening league fixture against Leeds United. Please visit www.eticketing.co.uk/bwfc to book your season ticket now.