Nikki Bull and the team have been tasked in ensuring we will be playing in the Vanarama National League South next season, says Margate's newly-appointed chairman John Webb

Monday 04th April 2016

MARGATE’S newly-appointed chairman John Webb says he’s beginning the search for a new manager after Nikki Bull’s decision to quit the club at the end of the season.

The news comes after Bob Laslett decided to part company with the Vanarama National League South club.

Mr Webb issued a statement on the club’s website and revealed that the club will be living within their means next season after a period of big-spending under their former chairman.

“I know there has been speculation over the last few weeks and in the absence of any firm announcement the grapevine will fill the vacuum with speculation. I hope now we can put that all behind us and move forward to build on the excellent work base Bob (Laslett) and Ivan have achieved.

“Margate is a fan based club and therefore the main cornerstone of all work going forward.

“We want to be open and transparent, but obviously like any business, we have to keep certain aspects restricted to relevant people or groups.

“The fans are the people who work hard and spend good money supporting their team, equally the team, manager and club must recognise and respect this and perform accordingly.

“It is really business as usual, financially the club is sound, our playing staff, like every year, will move about with some players leaving after their contracts have expired, offered new contracts and new players coming in. None of this can be done until we know which league we will be playing in next season.

“Nikki and the team have been tasked in ensuring we will be playing in the Vanarama National League South next season.

“Obviously Margate FC would like to recognise Nikki Bull’s achievements as both a player and caretaker manager. We thank Nikki for all his efforts and hard work for Margate Football Club.

“Unfortunately the club is in no position to offer Nikki a full time contract for next season as our fiscal priority will always remain to keep within our budget requirements. We wish Nikki all the very best for the future.

“Team building will take place over the closed season and Margate Football Club will be ready and available come the first game of next season. It is reasonable to assume we will not have the budget for the playing staff as we had this season and in no way are either Chris or myself going to jeopardise the financial future of the club by excessive expenditure.

“In recent history Margate Football Club has suffered the pains of this and we do not want to revisit this again.

“Announcements will be made on any comings and goings once the ink has dried on the paper. This is the only sensible way of dealing with players contracts, as things can change within a few minutes. Until the player has signed he is not ours.

“To clarify my position moving forward I have been appointed chairman of this great club with 81% shareholding, Chris (Pope) has replaced Ivan as vice chairman with 10% of shareholdings. The remaining 9% of shares are held by loyal Margate Football Club supporters, although I was happy to take the position as chairman without divulging the amount of shares it has been announced in the press which I am willing to confirm and hope this demonstrates our way forward with a clear and transparent management structure.

“Ground improvements is still on the agenda and will be developed in a realistic time scale.

“I want to meet with the youth section, supporters club and hold a fans forum in the very near future to get as many ideas and feedback as I can. In the meantime, do not hesitate to contact me to discuss the club, I would welcome your feedback.”

Margate sold striker Freddie Ladapo to Premier League Crystal Palace last week for an undisclosed transfer fee to help balance the books. 

The 23-year-old striker has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract at Selhurst Park and joined Margate from Kidderminster Harriers in January 2015.

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