Good afternoon and welcome to everyone to today's game against Shrewsbury Town.
It certainly feels a long three weeks since the start of the season, primarily due to the transfer window remaining open until the end of August. I would certainly be in favour of the window being closed concurrent with the start of the League season!
I have said in these notes before that we are a club that wants to develop players but we do accept that on occasion our progress as a club will not always match the aspirations of players.
However, the interests of the club also remain central and that is why we have stressed the need for any outgoing transfers to be concluded as early as possible in the window.
The fact that the window continues to be open for the first month of the season compromises this approach and results in unhelpful uncertainty and potential squad disruption until the window closes.
We have been working hard to continue to bring in players who will add quality and depth to the squad and overall I do feel that it will prove to have been a successful window, notwithstanding a few challenges and curve balls.
With the season underway, I think we are slightly disappointed that we didn't pick up a point at Scunthorpe but six points so far represents a more than decent haul.
Our next challenge is high-flying Shrewsbury, who maintain a 100 per cent record and are joint top of the League. They will come here full of confidence and I am delighted to welcome their fans, players and officials.
Next week, we start our journey in the Checkatrade Trophy. It is a competition that, despite its controversies which have been well aired, has given us much pleasure and excitement over the past two seasons and I know Pep is keen to keep this going. I would encourage all fans to support the team - if not the competition - as everyone at the club would like to progress as far as we can.
I have talked on many occasions about the importance of culture and togetherness. On this theme, I am delighted that, after a brief sabbatical, Richard Blackmore has rejoined us in a new role: Head of Club Operations. He will work closely with Benn Brown and Kathy Winstanley as well as being a strong point in liaison with training ground operations.
In terms of the administration of the club, I really do think we are in good hands with a great team who work very well together. We are always striving for continuous improvement in all that we do but I am confident that we have a strong foundation in place.
Enjoy the game and COYY!
Darryl Eales, Chairman
You can read the full programme online at www.matchdayfix.com/oufc.