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MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN

5 September 2012


MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN TO THE SUPPORTERS OF BARNET FC

I am convinced that come the end of the season the league table will look considerably different from how it does today. I am confident that the hard work we are all putting in will be rewarded.
Understandably the poor start to the season has created anxiety amongst our supporters and I want to directly communicate to you all that despite the results to date I believe that we will soon be able to turn the corner. And so bring to an end this cycle of battling relegation that has been our fate for the last few seasons.
I can say this with confidence, simply because I know that we now have a larger budget than ever before, a budget that will allow us to sign the quality of player who’ll add the experience and ability that will make for an improved squad.

Everyone knows that we currently have a very young group of players, a number of which need to be developed to reach their full potential and this will undoubtedly take a little time to bear fruit.

The squad contains only a handful of experienced professionals and having identified the type of player we need, we are now embarking on an exciting new phase of signings, all with the aim of improving results as the season progresses.

I understand the frustrations of supporters who constantly hear stories about the increasing pace of development at The Hive and ask how exactly this relates to the team that is sent out to represent them on the pitch.
Simply put, the sooner we can expand our revenue streams the more able we are to develop and bring better players into the club. For example, every membership that we sell to The Hive Fitness Centre increases our group income and under the new rules we can now invest a percentage of this, currently around 55%-60%, directly into the playing budget. So, more users of the gym, the cafe, the restaurant or the football centre actually means more money for investment in the team!
Even the solar panels at The Hive, which I purchased for £400k last year, bring in an annual subsidy of about £35k to the club which means the salary costs of one of our young players is now subsidised in the long term, not to mention significantly reducing our running costs!
Our project at The Hive is unquestionably becoming a future model for building a sustainable football club and this can only mean better long term prospects for Barnet FC.
I am in Cyprus at the moment attending to matters relating to my father’s death and I regret I will not be in attendance for Saturday’s game against Martin Allen’s Gillingham. Like other “Bees in exile” I will be listening to the game via the Barnet Player service.
The most cursory glance at the league table indicates just how tough a match this will be for us and I suspect that anything that we get out of this fixture will be a bonus. We all know from experience that Martin’s teams are highly motivated and at a well supported club like Gillingham he has the resources to put together a strong group of players. Martin and I have a relationship spanning over a decade and I know the game will be extremely tough.
This then is the time for all of us who hold Barnet FC dear to rally together and do whatever we can to help and assist those players on the pitch. Going from previous experience when times have been tough we have managed to do exactly was has been required and this is just one example of what makes being a part of this club so special.
A new wind of change is blowing and I am now extremely excited about our future prospects. We have all grown together despite these difficult times when the previous lack of investment and institutional support seemed destined to leave us to wither on the vine. But not any-more, the times have changed and changed for the better. Let us now show our support for each other and so ensure a better future for Barnet FC; I am certain that it lies ahead.

Tony Kleanthous
Chairman Barnet FC


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