Greenwich Borough are happy with the manager that we’ve got at the moment. We’ll re-look at it at Christmas and see where we are by then, says chairman Perry Skinner
GREENWICH BOROUGH chairman Perry Skinner has today given manager Ian Jenkins what is described in the football world as the dreaded vote of confidence.
The club have played eight games in the Southern Counties East Football League and sit in seventh-place in the table with three wins, three draws and two defeats. They have scored 27 goals and leaked 22.
Greenwich Borough suffered a 4-3 defeat at Deal Town yesterday and Mr Skinner phoned to reassure that Jenkins’ job is safe.
“I’d just like to make a statement that me and my brother are both happy with Ian regardless of all rumours on social media networks that he’s under no pressure,” said Mr Skinner.
“Me and my brother have told him that we will look at the situation come Christmas because he would’ve been in charge at the club for two years by then.
“He’s definitely under no pressure. We’re more than happy with the squad we’ve got, a bit disappointed with a couple of results and we’re making a few new signings and releasing a couple of players that aren’t quite up to it and stop people putting stuff on Twitter and Facebook baying for his blood.
“We’re 100% behind him. He knows, he’s fully aware that we’ll revaluate things at Christmas but to be honest we don’t see any change with the quality of the squad we’ve got we should be in and around the top two or three by then and more than challenging for promotion.
“He knows promotion is the ultimate aim and it depends whether we achieve that this year, so he knows what the score is and he knows how he stands within the club.
“I think he’s feeling pressure from outside the club after the result yesterday. As soon as (the game finished), I’ve had various managers texting me and phoning me up about the situation and I’ve just got to re-assure him that Greenwich Borough are happy with the manager that we’ve got at the moment. We’ll re-look at it at Christmas and see where we are by then.”
Speculation has been doing the rounds within the Southern Counties East Football League that the manager had eight games or would be axed if the club was not in a position challenging for the title.
The club are five points adrift of league leaders Hollands & Blair – who have claimed back-to-back Kent Invicta League titles and are playing at this level for the first time.
Mr Skinner revealed: “Basically, since yesterday’s result I’ve had two or three people on the phone asking what the situation is and can you bare me in mind and texts and that.
“I don’t really go on Twitter but people have told me what’s been said on Twitter about the manager and that so it must be disturbing for him to keep reading that and he must feel the pressure even though we have reassured him.
“I’d like to put it out there in the pubic domain how he stands at the moment at the club.”
Greenwich Borough and Ashford United were tipped as title favourites but neither club are showing good form at this early stage of the season.
Ashford United lie in sixth-place in the table on 12 points from seven games and have suffered three defeats, their latest being their 2-1 defeat at home to Erith Town yesterday, which was their first league game played on their new 3G pitch.
Hollands & Blair, Corinthian, Erith Town and Lordswood are ahead of big-guns Erith & Belvedere, Ashford United and Greenwich Borough and Tunbridge Wells in the top eight.
Mr Skinner said: “No one has put a run of games together. I think the first team that put ten straight wins on the board will probably open up a gap.
“I think Erith & Belvedere have lost four, Ashford have lost three now, Hollands & Blair have lost two and we have lost two, so I think it’s very, very open.
“I think the first team that put a run under their belt will probably see themselves five or six points clear at the top.
“It’s very frustrating. Obviously we’re all managers ourselves and we pick the line-up and there’s certain players you look at and you think what does the manager see in that player? It’s not just yourself thinking it, it’s other people as well!
“I enjoy it. I do get a buzz out of it every Saturday. It’s bitterly disappointing when the results don’t go the right way.
“The main thing the club have got to put right and the squad are the goals we’re letting in. I’ve never known a club that’s leaked in so many goals! Four seems to be the magic number for us at the moment, good or bad.
“Before I got involved at Greenwich, I went to Chelsea every home game for the last 11 seasons soon as Roman Abramovich took over. I don’t really miss that. I’m much more involved at Greenwich Borough. I still go to the odd Chelsea game but I enjoy it (at Greenwich). I get a buzz out of it. I look forward to every game. You never know what sort of line-up’s going to be out there and how they’re going to perform.”
In June 2015, Greenwich Borough’s chairman revealed plans to move into a new stadium on the previous site of the Gaelic Football Association in New Eltham.
You can read our EXCLUSIVE article here: http://kentishfootball.co.uk/news/greenwichstadium140615.
But Mr Skinner today revealed Plan B and that this could possibly be the last season they’ll be playing at Dartford’s Princes Park Stadium.
“I will hopefully be ringing you at the end of the month and giving you an update where we will actually be next season,” he said.
“Until things have been signed and agreed and everything’s done and dusted – it’s looking very positive.”
When asked whether it would be their first choice, Mr Skinner replied: “No, unfortunately that’s a long-term thing because Lindon Homes have put in an appeal. We haven’t had our application heard yet even through we’ve got support from the council.
“The Gaelic Football Association have no intention selling it to a sporting body, they’ve demonstrated that with them refusing our offer for the ground. It looks like a compulsory purchase order that probably looks like the likely way we will gain access to that.
“That’s a long-term thing but in the meantime the Plan B is just as exciting and once the deal has been done I can reveal where we will be next season.”
Mr Skinner has kept Dartford’s Bill Archer in the loop with his plans.
“I’ve had a chat with Bill, the president and he has heard rumours and I did say to Bill it looks like possibly we won’t extend our groundsharing agreement but I said to him he will be the first person to know once we’ve done the deal. He’s got other people enquiring about sharing the facilities up at Dartford.
“The facilities at Dartford are second to none and they’ve seem to have their pitch right this year, which is an added bonus as well.”
Greenwich Borough are finding it tough to play against teams that raise their game playing at the nine-year-old £7m stadium.
“I went to watch Corinthian last Saturday and was quite surprised what I saw out there. I was convincing we would win by three or four goals but they raised their game from the Saturday and the Tuesday by a good 25%,” claimed Mr Skinner, who is no relation to Dartford’s co-chairman Dave Skinner.
“We’ve experienced that at most home games, teams come along, look at the facilities, who wouldn’t want to raise their game when you play out there and I think Dartford are still experiencing the same problem now.
“It’s a disadvantage to have top quality facilities because it plays against you. Once we’ve got our own ground, I think teams will come to us knowing they have to battle to get points and goals and it will take the pressure off that scenario having the best facilities in non-league and the pressure that comes with it.”
It’s the Battle of Eltham on Tuesday night as Greenwich Borough welcome Cray Valley (Paper Mills) to Princes Park.
Paul Gross’ side are in thirteenth-place in the table, having won three and lost four of their seven league games and they go into the game on the back of a 4-1 home win over Sevenoaks Town yesterday.
Visit Greenwich Borough’s website: www.greenwichboroughfc.co.uk
Greenwich Borough v Cray Valley (Paper Mills)
Southern Counties East Football League
Tuesday 22nd September 2015
Kick Off 7:45pm
At Princes Park Stadium, Grassbanks, Darenth Road, Dartford, Kent DA1 1RT