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Signed Sealed and Delivered!!

By: Bill Osborne
Date: 05/07/2002

AT Blundell Park today Paul Groves and Graham Rodger signed three-year contracts as Manager and Assistant Manager respectively. These signings bring an end to the speculation about their future with Grimsby Town.

Both Groves and Rodger declined to enter into a formal arrangement toward the end of last season saying they wanted to finish the job first and then sort out the player position.

They continued that stance until the last few days when the club offered them the new contracts. Chairman Peter Furneaux insisting that the deal had to be done before any player signings could begin.

After talks that lasted over three days the pair finally accepted the offer after gaining assurances regarding the structure and budget of the playing side of the club bringing relief to club and fans alike.

Grimsby Town have signed Paul Groves and Graham Rodger on a three year management deal.

At this morning's press conference, held in the Boardroom, Chairman Peter Furneaux said: "These are two people who have come through the ranks at Blundell Park, and they know Grimsby well. Over the last few weeks we've had quite a few talks about the future."

"Everyone believes that these two have quite a career in management, and we're looking for them to take Grimsby with them."

The Chairman asked Paul Groves if there had ever been any doubt that they would sign the deal. Paul replied, "We're delighted to have signed because it's a job we always wanted to do, and we're very happy that we've been able to come to an agreement. It was a big decision, and it's a big job. People may have made assumptions about whether or not we would sign, but coming to an agreement is all part of the negotiating process."

"We are delighted that the negotiations have been concluded so that we can get on with the business of preparing for the new season."

"It's a job that I've always wanted, and the talks were never centred on money. I realise that I have to work within a budget, and I've always been aware of the financial constraints of this job. But there were a number of factors that persuaded me that it was right."

"It was important for me that I had Graham Rodger on board. We have an excellent understanding of one another, and it's important that there's a good management partnership. The way that the fans reacted to us last season, when we needed their support to pull the club out of the relegation zone was a factor as is the terrific season-ticket sales so far for this season."

"There's also been a fantastic response from sponsors and advertisers during the close season, which has been great to see."

"We're now working hard to strengthen where we can within the budgets that we have. "The First Division just gets stronger all the time, and it is a great challenge for this club, but there is a terrific spirit here, and we're looking to the players responding as they did last season."



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