My key messages to the new preferred bidder for Port Vale FC:
Your customers, the supporters of Port Vale FC, have had a rough time in recent years. The very first thing you should do is to reassure them of your intentions regarding the club they have fought so hard to save. Bear in mind we’ll have heard much of it before so be prepared to invest time and effort in building up trust. Have an ongoing dialogue with the fans as a whole and the Supporters’ Club which has been instrumental in the campaign for change
It would be commercial suicide if you were to become chummy with any previous members of the board of directors at Port Vale and they started showing up in the directors’ box on match days or swanning around like they still own the place
Beware of being courted by previous bidders for the club – none of whom have covered themselves in glory. Football clubs tend to attract egos, eccentrics and chancers and Vale has certainly seen its fair share in recent years
The current squad is doing a remarkable job under difficult circumstances. Some of them need tying down on proper contracts before the January transfer window (ask the gaffer who our key men are). This Vale side has a genuine shot at promotion if we can protect what we’ve got and strengthen in key areas ASAP. Investing in the squad is a sure-fire way of earning the goodwill of fans who have been starved of success for so long
Micky Adams is a good manager who, together with his back room staff, is doing a tremendous job while the club remains in administration. They were led up the garden path by previous directors and badly let down by the first preferred bidder. Please don’t mess them around
While the administrators have done a decent job of keeping the club ticking over many problems remain. The commercial side of the business has been under-achieving for as long as any of us can remember and customer service at all levels is poor. This must improve
On Saturday, November 17, a statue honouring Port Vale’s greatest servant – Roy Sproson – is to be erected at Vale Park. This is an important day for many reasons and the unveiling of this sculpture, funded entirely by Vale supporters, symbolises that this is a club with a proud heritage and an extremely passionate and loyal fan base.
Please help us to make it a day to remember.
Read my Port Vale columns every Friday during the season in The Sentinel