AN update from Southend United chairman Ron Martin 

LOSING a game of football happens.

None of us are ever happy and with no wins so far each weekend becomes more miserable.

Losing a match is bad enough, but losing the faith is far worse.

In times like this we need to stick together.

As chairman the buck stops with me and I am the target of supporters’ moans.

Whilst I, of course, don’t like it I have to accept that.

However I am not the enemy; quite the opposite I am as despondent (probably more so) than each and every fan when we lose.

It has to be understood we are in a rebuilding phase.

That has meant a massive “clear out” of people who do not share our work ethic.

I don’t want to be critical but this includes managers whose recruitment was both expensive and poor.

Of course I ultimately sanctioned the signings ... yes knowing the cost but reliant on the manager as to the players quality and what they would contribute to our club’s success.

Too many failed to live up to expectation and it is they that have been “cleared out” along with a couple of managers.

That is not saying those managers didn’t mean well ... I am sure they did, but did they truly drill down to know the players we were committing too.

Not only did the club not get the rewards from those investments it has been expensive to remedy the mistakes.

I could have said no to the signings but in football the chairman ultimately backs or sacks the manager. It is not as black and white as that but when push comes to shove decisions have to be made.

Time will tell whether it will deliver success but of one thing I am certain is that Mark Molesley is committed to the cause.

He may not, yet, have all the tools at his disposal.

Of the six new signings two are still sidelined, along with John White, although the next week or so may see their availability.

John White, Alan McCormack and Simeon Akinola are an additional “spine” in the team.

Each player would bring a different dynamic to the squad and have been missed. We played some good football on Saturday but still need more grit and determination in both boxes.

The players know this and we have a good group.

Right now as a club we should be pulling together ... moans and groans will not achieve what we all crave; success on the pitch.

Off the pitch life is tough for us all.

Football has been hit all ways round.

For us, in addition to no fans, season cards and sponsorship we have had to discharge the legacy of the past.

In July we were told that a “rescue package” for EFL clubs would be in place “within a couple of weeks”.

This was the understanding when agreeing a restart of the season on September 12th.

Nothing has yet happened and it doesn’t appear imminent.

As you many of you would have read, the EFL, PL together with the “big six” clubs are trying to find a way forward.

Football finances, as a result of Covid-19, has brought into very sharp focus a need for a “re-set”.

In short a fairer distribution of media revenues throughout the pyramid. I think we shall get there but it may be too late for some clubs if it drags on.

There have been continual discussion with the government to aid the football industry. With £1.5 billion going to Arts, Culture & Heritage one could be forgiven for asking how does that exclude football. clubs throughout the country are at the very heart of a town’s culture.

Football clubs are characterised by their history ... traditions handed down through generations, a true Heritage.

As for Art ... well maybe we are not seeing that at Roots Hall right now, but we will.

As I said at the beginning of this note we are rebuilding.

We have necessarily changed a lot and further changes will be made, including in the January window.

Until the EFL, PL, “Big Six” or the Government find a solution to a “re-set” your club will continue to be supported, financially, through these challenging times.

Hopefully we’ll have you back with us to cheer Mark Molesley and our honest group of players, who are working hard to turn things around, very very soon; We Need You !