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Fans' Forum: Half-time Summary

At the top-table were Head Coach Gianfranco Zola [GZ], Chief Executive Officer Scott Duxbury [SD], Technical Director Gian Luca Nani [GN] & Club Captain John Eustace [JE]

GZ: "This club is considered as being one of the clubs which will become one of the leading clubs for the company [the Pozzo`s]. They are planning to make Watford one of, if not, the top team. We have a lot of loan players at the moment but if we believe they are good enough they will stay at Watford. I`m here not because I want to spend my life in the Championship, but because I am an ambitious manager and I want to play at higher levels. That`s where we are heading to. I believe that the Pozzo family have no interest in Watford playing in the Championship for a long time."

SD: "These are players that passionately chose to come to Watford. The players that came, it was their choice, they wanted to be here. If they are good enough and they want to be here we have the option on all of them. All of the players we want to stay will stay."

SD: "The accounts will be published towards the end of November. I don`t really want to comment on them in any detail. The debt we were aware of; the debt we are managing. Our aim is to implement a business plan which will make the club self-sustainable as quickly as possible. We are reducing the debt and we are getting towards a position where we are breaking even."

SD: "They [Saracens] will be using it this year and that will be it. No-one will be using the pitch other than Gianfranco."

SD: "I think it`s achievable quite quickly. It`s a combination of getting the price point right and that we`re not pricing people out of games. The season ticket will always be the cheapest way of coming to watch us. Ultimately we need to be an attractive proposition to come and watch."

SD: "What I`d like to do next season is move the family stand potentially to the Lower Rous and look at introducing some unreserved seating; some cash turnstiles."

GZ: "Working with 29/30 players you can get all of them training. Training is only one part of it, if you can`t get a game, something is missing. They are there training every day for something and because of the number of players they don`t get what they`re looking for. We want to take this club forward respecting every single player."

SD: "The academy is central to our future & our development. We haven`t downgraded, we never had category one. What we had was Harefield. To actually achieve category one, which is essentially a certificate from the Premier League, there were huge costs of 2m. Essentially we couldn`t afford that. If in the future we`re in a position to go to category one we can always apply for it. We`re doing exactly what we`ve always done. I think the academy is in safe hands."

SD: "The priority is the South West corner. Let`s get 15,000 fans every week then we`ll worry about the East Stand."

"Premier League status would have an impact as attendances would increase. Timescale? There is no timescale.'

SD: "Very, very simply, Gino`s philosophy is to take clubs with a strong community heart but haven`t quite achieved their potential yet. It`s a sore point but the London geography was a big part of it. Ironically the East Stand was a real positive as it was an obvious way the club could improve."

SD: "It doesn`t matter what press we`re getting, we`re now getting coverage in a major national newspaper. We`re being noticed, that`s no bad thing."

SD: "Within reason I`m prepared to consider everything in order to get the attendances back."

GZ: "We fight every time!" [On relationship between technical director & head coach]

GN: "We trust each other a lot. We have the same idea of football. He manages the team, he`s in charge of football, the team, the squad. I look after the contracts, everything outside of the pitch, I look after the scouts, I try to identify talent. We have the same ideas about football, the style."

GZ: "Managers in this country are in charge of everything. That goes for choosing the kitman, the masseurs, the players. That`s a huge job - you can`t do everything. Gian Luca knows what type of players I need & he provides me with more choice."

SD: "I am a far better CEO now than I was in the past. Provided you don`t make the same mistakes twice you`re a better person for it. All we can promise is we can give everything to this football club & we are better individuals for our past."

SD: "This football club stands on its own and is not a feeder club to Udinese. It`s a family club rooted in the community. We want to be successful and we want to be ambitious but never we`ll never lose sight of our values."

"If we could have our time again we wouldn`t have bought so many loan players in at the last minute."

SD: "It was just simply mechanics and finances and getting them here quickly." [Players signing for Udinese before joining us.]




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The Journalist

Writer: Tom Bodell Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday November 1 2012

Time: 8:31PM

 

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