Wigan Athletic chief sets out three-point action plan

“Survive, revive, thrive.”

Friday, 15th May 2020, 10:48 am
Darren Royle

That’s the three-word strategy Wigan Athletic will be adopting to get back on their feet following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Along with the rest of clubs in the country, Latics have felt the pinch off the field with revenue streams having dried up.

The cash-flow situation was helped last month with the playing squad accepting a wage deferral – understood to be in the region of 30 per cent – while a number of non-playing staff were also placed on furlough.

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Darren Royle recently highlighted the ‘crucially important’ support owners IEC have provided in recent months, with Latics having ‘lost a significant amount of income’ during ‘a difficult time for all clubs’.

And he has outlined the blueprint for the process of getting the club going again once normality comes around.

“Our independent director on our board, Kevin Roberts, uses a military term from America called ‘VUCA’ – volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous,” said the club’s executive chairman.

“And I think that describes the Championship, and football in general, at the moment.

“It’s a competitive league at the best of times, but now we have those stresses against the even more important backdrop of what’s going on with the virus in the country and in the world.

“We have to sit back and look first and foremost at the most important thing – which is people’s health and safety – and make sure that comes to the fore.

“Once football does come back again, we need to be in a good place to move on.

“And we’ve certainly got plans in place to ensure survival first of all, which we’ve talked about already, as well as other measures we’ve worked on with staff at the club.

“After that we need to look at a revival strategy, and then eventually a thrive strategy as well.

“That’s the three steps as far as we’re concerned, and it’s something we’re working on with the senior management team, and the players and the staff.

“It’s a tough time for all businesses and for all people in this country at the moment.

“But it’s not nearly as tough as it is for those who work for the NHS, and those who are fighting this virus.

“We need to be mindful of that, and ensure we fully support the guidance being given by the government.”