Jump to content

Recommended Posts

A detailed update from the owner, Abdallah Lemsagam.

Introduction 
The below sets out my vision and plan for Oldham Athletic from 2019 to 2022. This will be supported by more detailed annual plans for each year, but serves to set out the ambitions and milestones which the Club aims to achieve during this period. 

Vision 
I do have a clear vision for Oldham Athletic. It is to play entertaining football in the Oldham Athletic tradition. This will be fast-paced and tactically and technically good quality. It will be delivered by developing young talent through the academy system, as well as a Europe-wide system of recruitment and excellent coaching and management.  

It is clear that the Club’s supporters and history expect Oldham to be competing at a higher level than League Two, and that League One status should be achieved relatively quickly. I share the ambition to achieve promotion – not just to League One, but over time to the Championship. I will make a commitment to try to achieve League One status within three years, and hopefully sooner. At this point in time, Championship football is best considered as realistic within a five year plan rather than in the short term. It is however, the long term ambition.  

Practicalities 
The achievement of these objectives – and any further long term progression - has to be set in the context of the Club’s financial situation, which is extremely challenging for both the playing and non-playing sides of the organisation.  

My initial aim is to stabilise the football club, financially, organisationally and in football terms. This is the foundation on which to build a strong club, which is successful on the pitch and resilient as an organisation. 

I am currently subsidising the football club from my own personal resources, and will continue to do so until a more stable position is reached. However, it is important that the football club establishes a robust system of financial management and becomes self sufficient. This is the foundation of future success. 

In considering the options for achieving this, I have undertaken an analysis of the current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, and from this have established a set of clear and measurable priorities and targets.  

Strengths 
One of the strengths of Oldham Athletic is the commitment and enthusiasm of its fans and their desire to see a good Club, performing well on and off the field.

The football club is valued within the town, as an organisation which gains positive national attention, such as occurred during the recent FA Cup run. 

The Club has completed a season in League Two with sufficient success to show that it has a realistic chance of promotion in the near future. 

As owner, I have invested a considerable part of my own personal funds into Oldham Athletic, and intend to continue supporting the Club as it recovers financially. 

I have begun assembling a Board of Directors with sufficient skills and experience to work with me and guide the Club to a stronger position. 

I have also begun work on reorganising off the field and on the field affairs, with a view to achieving the best results, while recognising that the budget is restricted. 

The Club has begun to make progress with the playing squad, which has achieved some success and acquired value. 

Weaknesses 
The condition of the Club’s financial and commercial position is extremely challenging. 

I bought Oldham Athletic Football Club in the spring of 2018. The previous management of the Club and the disarray in its basic financial management made due diligence difficult.   

The ownership of the stadium, land and buildings, presents an additional challenge, as the previous owners appear to have placed them in a separate company, over which the football club has no control. This includes the Boundary Park pitch and stadium, the surrounding car parking and practice facilities and the new North Stand. It means a considerable amount of potential income is being lost to the Club, and in some respects, additional expenditure is incurred. 

There are three additional areas in which the Club has not performed well for some time:

  1. The value of the squad which the Club has allowed to decline significantly. Players have been sold through uncompetitive deals, contracts have been short, and the value of the squad has been repeatedly depleted. 
  2. Commercial income – through sponsorships and partnerships, has reduced to a level lower than at comparable clubs. 
  3. Fan base – has not grown for some time, as reflected in season tickets and match day sales. 

Opportunities 
Through sensible recruitment, continuing support for the academy and use of my own extensive networks of players in Europe, the quality and value of the playing squad can be enhanced incrementally and over time. 

There is scope to enhance commercial income, working with national and local business partners to reduce costs and increase income. 

Although Oldham Athletic shares an area with two major Premier League clubs and is in competition with local clubs for supporters, there is scope to encourage new fans to attend and to extend support in areas of the town which have not previously engaged positively with the Club. 

Threats 
There is no doubt that the condition in which the Club has been left by the previous owners has been precarious.  

The ownership arrangements in relation to land, buildings, the Oldham Event Centre and related assets has greatly diminished the Club’s prospects of financial and playing success.  

I have been able to manage these threats by providing the Club with subsidy during the first year of my ownership and I shall continue to do this while managing a transformation programme to establish financial stability and improve the quality of the team.

However, I do need the support of all the fans and stakeholders to help make this transformation work. Unless the radical reorganisation of the football club is delivered, Oldham Athletic will remain in a precarious position. It operates in a very competitive football marketplace and has been hugely disadvantaged by a long period of poor management, which has taken assets out of the Club and drained its resources.  

Priorities 
The Club can definitely be turned around, but it will need a collective, united, consistent and patient approach. To achieve these transformations I propose to focus on the following priorities:

1 - Organisational effectiveness - I have already improved this by reducing overheads, reorganising the non playing staff and making key appointments, notably:

  • In finance where a team is introducing good systems and financial controls. 
  • A Head of Commercial who is building new partnerships and sources of sponsorship income.
  • I am working on the appointment of a Chief Executive and the restructure of the non-playing team to ensure the Club has effective and efficient administration. 
  • I am also working on the appointment of an excellent Head Coach to lead the playing side of the organisation. 
2 - The quality and value of the playing squad - this too has already improved compared to previous years. It will improve further by:
  • Establishing commercially competitive policies in the contracting, purchase and sale of players.
  • Developing the academy and the pipeline of talent.
  • Being open to recruitment of players from across the globe with the potential to develop as players as they contribute to the success of the Club. 
3 - Excellent coaching and management - high quality coaching and management, whilst supporting the Club’s ambitions to deliver entertaining, technically and tactically good quality football, is central to the forward plan.  

This will include coaches who can spot and develop talent and build a stable and effective squad capable of competing for promotion. 

It is important to establish continuity and consistency in this aspect of the Club, so that Oldham Athletic establishes its own playing style, pipeline of players, and avoids short term overhaul.

4 - Governance - to establish good governance in the setting of the Club’s strategy, its day-to-day management and its legal and regulatory responsibilities. 

Progress has been made in setting and managing detailed budgets for 2019-20. Progress has also been made in the appointment of the Board of Directors, with an appointment of a non-executive director from the fans.

The Club is in addition seeking external support from sympathetic partners and stakeholders. 

And the Club will actively foster a good working relationship with Trust Oldham and work to bring them on board in the realisation of this plan. 

5 - Community - the challenge of turning around the football club will require the support of the community its supporters. This will be achieved by actively engaging the business community, other local organisations, colleges, schools, and voluntary groups aswell as the fans.
 
The aim of this work is to build the reputation of the football club as an organisation within Oldham, and to broaden the fan base, by raising the profile of the Club and its contribution to the wider community.
 
Conclusion 
I acknowledge that the Club will need to bring forward more detailed plans on an annual basis. There are also issues around commercial and legal confidentiality around much of the detail of the Club’s current work programme.
 
However, this document does set out, clearly, the high level ambitions which I have for Oldham Athletic, my analysis of the current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats – and my priorities in taking the Club forward. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get no. 1 sorted. The rest is irrelevant until it is. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Like him or not it is clear that the previous owners have left him with one hand tied behind his back.

It sounds pretty much that he will do a lot of player recruitment and get a head coach to mould them into a team. Realistically with limited budgets what else can we do except recruit overseas and youth development !!!

Maybe it's time all those who haven't bought their season tickets to show their support and lets stand up and be counted!!!

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Difficult to argue with any part of that statement. However, after years of mis-management, I'm afraid I have to see actions now rather than fine words.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's all words until there is action we can see. I don't trust the guy as far as I can throw him but I'm willing to (and sincerely hope I will) be proved wrong. If he is sincere, then it's a good plan to start with. 

 

He states he is looking for a head coach rather than a manager. I don't actually have an issue with this, I think the director of football/head coach pairing can work very well. It might be difficult to find an experienced manager who will want to work in this way though. It also won't work if he gets too involved in the day to day squad dynamics. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

League One status within three years, jesus christ no wonder Wildy left. Should be pushing for it NEXT year.

Edited by Barry Bosnian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, BJBlue said:

It's all words until there is action we can see. I don't trust the guy as far as I can throw him but I'm willing to (and sincerely hope I will) be proved wrong. If he is sincere, then it's a good plan to start with. 

 

He states he is looking for a head coach rather than a manager. I don't actually have an issue with this, I think the director of football/head coach pairing can work very well. It might be difficult to find an experienced manager who will want to work in this way though. It also won't work if he gets too involved in the day to day squad dynamics. 

The Sporting Director could work, if it was not so severely compromised by nepotism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, losesome said:

Like him or not it is clear that the previous owners have left him with one hand tied behind his back.

It sounds pretty much that he will do a lot of player recruitment and get a head coach to mould them into a team. Realistically with limited budgets what else can we do except recruit overseas and youth development !!!

Maybe it's time all those who haven't bought their season tickets to show their support and lets stand up and be counted!!!

Spoken about a lot, even more rumours,  but has anything been officially and transparently stated? No evidence of any issue as far as I am aware. Otherwise it's standard practice to blame the last guy and we are 18 months in.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, singe said:

Spoken about a lot, even more rumours,  but has anything been officially and transparently stated? No evidence of any issue as far as I am aware. Otherwise it's standard practice to blame the last guy and we are 18 months in.

So you think SC left everything spic and span!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought it was against site policy to copy from the official site? 

 

Especially to Kowenicki's extent. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Barry Bosnian said:

League One status within three years, jesus christ no wonder Wildy left. Should be pushing for it NEXT year.

Hopefully sooner or summat like that he said ! I totally agree though we should go all out for it next season. 

I think it’s a well worded piece all in all. Written by Adam Inbetweener I reckon ?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, simplythemostimportantkick said:

Hopefully sooner or summat like that he said ! I totally agree though we should go all out for it next season. 

I think it’s a well worded piece all in all. Written by Adam Inbetweener I reckon ?  

 

That's what I assumed. It looks as though this board has been read and all bases have attempted to be covered. 'Give us another year and we'll come back to you then'. It's a polished statement, like the others. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, Barry Bosnian said:

League One status within three years, jesus christ no wonder Wildy left. Should be pushing for it NEXT year.

The playing side is close to irrelevant for now. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s so difficult to call, obviously the club was in difficulty! Did he invest large amounts of money ? Quite possibly! 3 years to get out of the league with a supposed 100% injection , could be taken as a large investment. Would surely mean a good chance , surely you’d say two max! But if 3 ! Then two to be in the championship.... seems odd! I want to believe like everyone, a desperate want and need to believe as the alternative is dire. What’s true! What’s false? Who the fuck knows ???

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very interesting. 

 

He didn’t HAVE  to say any of that. However he did.  Why say that if your ‘the typical forgein owner who never attends and doesn’t give a fuck’ it doesn’t make sense. FWIW. I think in his own way he actually really wants to make a go of it. It’s just that his methods are so left field, and confrontational that he makes people wary. It’s his way. Or fuck off. I’m still very sceptical of his methods, but I have to say he does make some salient points. However he can’t blame the previous owners for to long. . Remember the mess labour left us in. . . 🙄

 

But. An I can’t believe I’m typing this,

 

-We now turn bids for players. Hallyfuckinluah. 

 

- He’s appointed a commercial guy. (Someone with a bit a track record) 

 

-He’s released plans for a proper training ground.

 

There are tentative signs of a proper infrastructure. Which is fabulous and what  we all want. . .

 

Until he signs a Namibian centre forward. 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, League one forever said:

Very interesting. 

 

He didn’t HAVE  to say any of that. However he did.  Why say that if your ‘the typical forgein owner who never attends and doesn’t give a fuck’ it doesn’t make sense. FWIW. I think in his own way he actually really wants to make a go of it. It’s just that his methods are so left field, and confrontational that he makes people wary. It’s his way. Or fuck off. I’m still very sceptical of his methods, but I have to say he does make some salient points. However he can’t blame the previous owners for to long. . Remember the mess labour left us in. . . 🙄

 

But. An I can’t believe I’m typing this,

 

-We now turn bids for players. Hallyfuckinluah. 

 

- He’s appointed a commercial guy. (Someone with a bit a track record) 

 

-He’s released plans for a proper training ground.

 

There are tentative signs of a proper infrastructure. Which is fabulous and what  we all want. . .

 

Until he signs a Namibian centre forward. 

 

 

 

 

It’s where im at ! So confusing ! I think he inherited a shit storm and does care, I think so! But massively ducked up along the way! I’m not a season ticket holder or in a position to be one! Due to young children! But I think anyone who is or was meeds to back the guy or were fucked

Either way!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Barry Bosnian said:

League One status within three years, jesus christ no wonder Wildy left. Should be pushing for it NEXT year.

 

Saying within 3 years does include next year in fairness.

 

Its a small step in the right direction.

 

2 concerns firstly it was clear to everyone beforehand that the ground the club and the OEC come under separate entities to us it should be pretty obvious to someone who is buying the business. So he can't really complain about that and will have known he would have to subsidise the club. We also had a winding up petition this week and while that debt may have been paid the fact it got that far suggests we still have genuine financial problems which I don't see getting any better anytime soon.

 

Secondly he says the following on point 2

 

2 - The quality and value of the playing squad - this too has already improved compared to previous years.

 

We have just had the worst league finish in 49 years. Last seasons squad was the worst in my lifetime and what good players we have from that squad Lang Clarke Iverson and Edmondson won't be or are unlikely to be hear next season. A player who hasn't been good enough to start a league game despite being at the club for 18 months has been offered a new contract. Im not anticipating his new signings to be much cop either. His recruitment policy has to get far far better if we are going to see a positive change.

 

Its a start but he needs to back these words up now with proper action, and his actions need to change because since hes been here we've only been going in one direction and its not forward.

Edited by GlossopLatic

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...