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Swan: We need more through the turnstiles
2:18pm Wednesday 19th September 2012 in Sport
CONCERNED United chairman Chris Swan has called upon the people of Redditch to come and support the club.
Swan fears the Reds won’t progress unless match day attendances start improving.
Despite strengthening the club’s links with the community, Swan realises he needs increased support through the turnstiles, otherwise the Reds cannot succeed.
Swan’s plight was highlighted this week when Reds faced local rivals Leamington.
He claimed: “Leamington’s average gate is 500 higher than us. Yet we have an immediate catchment area of 80,000 to call upon.
“Ultimately, it’s the people of Redditch who will decide what level of football they want us to compete in.
“My perspective hasn’t changed from the moment I took over the club. Redditch United has to be sustainable. I have cleared the debt but I’m not going to subsidise the playing budget. Any surplus money we obtain will be put into the community.
“I am well aware that in the past, coming to Redditch United could prove a poor experience and the club had the capacity to seriously cheese people off.
“But the club are doing a great deal of good things now, especially within the community where we have great links with the College, Borough Council and the YMCA. I can’t speak highly enough of them.
“I believe we have something special here, but now we’ve reached a point where we need to get people coming back to the club.”
He added: “The attendances are no different to last season, but if we are to progress, than we need another 200 to 300 coming.
“We lose in the region of £70,000-a-year through football on a Saturday.
“That said, we have no debt. The club is run properly and we’re doing what we can to attract more people.
“We’ve staged soap star charity matches and we’ve had Manchester United Old Boys down here.
“Now we have to release the potential, because of the catchment area we’re in, we should really be playing at a higher level.
“However, we need people to get behind us and support us. “It’s not expensive. We operate a scheme where Under-16’s only pay a £1.”