The Chairman's programme notes ahead of today's Stadium MK finale...
Good afternoon everyone.
I want to sincerely apologise to all the supporters of our Football Club for this unacceptable season – this is not what we expect in Milton Keynes. We are all supporters of this Football Club and I am feeling all the hurt and frustrations that we are experiencing right now.
I have to take responsibility for the failures of this campaign because, ultimately, the buck stops with me. In hindsight, the two managerial decisions were flawed, although both appointments were made with the right intentions. Robbie Neilson came with a terrific track record and I had endorsements from a number of extremely knowledgeable people in the game. Unfortunately, it proved to be the wrong manager and the wrong time which is why, in January, we made the decision to part company. I then moved quickly to appoint Dan Micciche as our next First-Team Manager. I did speak to other managers but I liked the plan that Dan presented to me and I felt it was important to go with someone who understood the Football Club. It was a gamble and it just wasn’t meant to be. There were certainly positives that Dan can take credit for behind the scenes but ultimately the results on the pitch just weren’t good enough and I made the decision that he was not the man to take us into next season – the minute I had made that decision, I felt it was important to make the change there and then and give us the maximum time to look to the future.
The players have to bear some responsibility too – they have under-performed this season and they will be the first to admit that. Because of this, we have made a decision to remove certain awards from next week’s Awards evening, including Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year – we are not a Football Club that celebrates failure. It is important, however, that the night continues as our Academy, our Ladies team and our Sport and Education Trust deserve recognition for some outstanding achievements this season.
So where do we go from here? We’ve taken a smack in the face this season but we must stand up and take it. Fortunately, we are a stable Football Club which means that even in a crisis such as this, we can find a way to move forwards. We will still have one of the biggest budgets in the division next season but money doesn’t mean success – as we have learnt to our cost, particularly this year, it’s not what you spend, it’s how you spend it.
We now have the time to put this right and we will approach the process differently. I feel this situation determines that we need a certain profile of manager – one that has experience of the lower leagues and knows what it takes to win at this level. Our clear aim now is to appoint a manager that can stop the slide and make us a competitive football team again.
Once again, I can only apologise for what has turned out to be one of the worst seasons in the Club’s history. I know the only way to make this up to you is by bringing winning football back to Stadium MK – let’s hope the next time we are sitting here in August, we are on the start of that journey.