There will be a Sheffield Eagles next season says Mark Aston - and that will include their long-time coach.
Aston asked for time to reflect on his position following the final game of the season, after a three month period where the club looked doomed following the breakdown of a prospective takeover.
Now Aston is back to his normal bubbly self and determined to stay, and he says that the long awaited lifeline will now be funded by a ‘sponsor’, rather than the club taking on new ownership.
“Without a shadow of a doubt, the club will survive,” a bullish Aston told The Star.
“The club will be here, and I suppose you can also be reassured that so will I.
“The agreement in principle is there, and the pre-planning applications for the new stadium at the OLP (Olympic Legacy Park) will go in within the next couple of weeks.
“The sponsor, as we like to call him, is committed, he is waiting on the green light for his power station, but he is willing to build a stadium and sponsor the club significantly.
“He doesn’t want to run or own the club, he wants to sponsor it. This is massive for both parties. I have had a meeting with him this week, he is really excited about it, things are moving along quite nicely with the council so we are feeling very positive about it. As much as we have had some dark days of late, it is certainly looking as though there is a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.”
The ‘sponsor’, who is the same individual that the club has been in dialogue with for the past three months, is committed to the eventual move to the OLP, but this doesn’t look likely at all for next season.
Despite former chief executive John Whaling ruling out playing in the major football stadiums in the region, Aston says that this is now back on the table and is the next priority.
Meanwhile, Aston has confirmed that both Keal Carlile, the 2016 Player of the Year, and Michael Knowles have both joined fellow Kingstone Press Championship club Featherstone Rovers.