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Our Worst Fears!

By: Bill Osborne
Date: 22/04/2003

Grimsby Town are relegated. But it is not the end of the world. We still have a club. We still have a ground and we still have fans. All the ingredients towards making a successful football club.

Maybe but only maybe, relegation might be just the kick in the teeth the club need. From the board, to the manager and the fans. The board because they must know success cannot be bought on a shoestring budget. The players, who have to learn to earn their money and the fans who stayed away. Their gate money could have made a great difference to the clubs coffers.

A sad day! A day that all football fans dread. But its over now and the only way to go is forward.

In the Grimsby Telegraph today, chairman Peter Furneaux indicated that in his comments: "It is important that we put everything together and go forward.

"The community has to get behind the club. We are looking forward. We will be announcing a large sponsorship in the near future and this summer will be signing new players.

"There is a forward-looking, stable board and we're determined to look to the future positively." Grimsby MP Austin Mitchell said; "Success at the club brings a glow to the town. A lot of people mention it to me in London when Town are doing well - but they have not been saying as much recently. It is a great shame what has happened - but there is always next season."

Paul Groves gave his post match statement: "Today is a very black day and it hurts. It's hard to take. I'm just gutted. It's been a long, hard road and it's been tough. There's no doubt about that."

"I can't fault the effort of the players. They've given everything they've got to give. Some people might criticise them for their lack of effort - but I'd disagree with that. The players have given 100 per cent and sometimes things haven't gone well. It's easy to say they haven't tried. That's just not true."

"The players are hurting in the dressing room. There are futures at stake. Relegation will have a bearing on that and the club have said that it would bring financial hardship. Some of those players have been here for a very long time, given a hell of a lot and their contracts are up. There's obviously going to be concern at what the future brings."

"There will be fears along those lines I'm sure. We'll have to see what relegation does to the football club and what the adjustment is regarding wages. We are still going to need players next season and we want to keep our best players. That's part and parcel of my job. We'll have to take stock."

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