What is Sheffield Wednesday’s strategy? – Club release lengthy minutes from new fan engagement meeting
Sheffield Wednesday’s push to improve the connect between the club and its supporters led to a newly-formed ‘engagement panel’ where Dejphon Chansiri was asked questions about what lay ahead for the club.
There has been much said about a disconnect at the club, but Wednesday are taking steps to try and fix that by offering supporters – including the Sheffield Wednesday Supporters Trust – the chance to discuss the way forward with the club and ask any questions that they feel would help rebuild bridges in a fan-led environment.
Now, after plenty of discussions with the English Football League and after looking at the result of various similar panels across the national football pyramid, the club have released the minutes from the detailed panel discussion that took place last month.
A variety of matters were discussed by the panelists, including strategy – short, medium and long-term – and the topic of the season ticket refunds that remains ongoing, while the chairman also gave an idea of his plans for Wednesdayites and their matchday experience when they are eventually allowed to return to Hillsborough.
The minutes regarding the idea of strategy read, “DC said football is a unique business with budgets made on a season by season basis, not the same as a regular business. Planning too far ahead is very difficult depending on divisional status. DC stressed that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted significantly on future planning regardless, not just at SWFC but football clubs around the world.
“DC explained the club did its best to push for promotion in 15/16 and 16/17 but fell short so had to step back and reassess. A rebuilding process was necessary but there are no guarantees in football. DC said of course he is aware of the criticism of recruitment but it is easier to judge any player with hindsight. Every player wants to give their best and sometimes players prove to be right for the club and sometimes not. Players cannot just be let go if transfers do not work out, football is not like normal business because contracts are in place.
“DC said the club came close to the Premier League twice, and after that had to rebuild. Every club has the same ambitions, those with parachute money have the advantage but every signing has been made with the best intention. The football will always come first and that budget has to be separate to day to day running of the club. DC said in the back office he has and will always try to improve the club on every level where possible.
“DC stated that revenues have been higher than any time in the past pre-pandemic and the club will always look at every which way to generate revenue. Regarding the stadium, DC explained its age, design and location makes it difficult to facilitate particular improvements but will always improve areas where necessary and feasible.”
The aforementioned minutes were signed off by everybody in attendance at the panel last month as they seek to give a transparent look into what was discussed by those involved.