Oxford United have a new Board of Directors with big plans for the club and this week we caught up with Horst Geicke to find out a little more about his involvement at the club.
Horst is originally from Hamburg but has extensive business interests around the world, notably in Asia. He told us how he came to be involved with Oxford in the first place:
“Football is a big thing for me” he said “it always has been, but strangely it was always UK football and the Premier League not so much the Bundesliga. I was excited when I was asked to be involved at Oxford but I want to be honest and I was sceptical about the level in League 1 and what we might find but I was delighted to find a really good team and a fantastic fanbase, something which gives us a very strong foundation.
“And then you have to remember that this is the city of Oxford, a fantastic place and such a huge part of English culture and history. I am based in Hong Kong but have been to Oxford many times: my kids went to summer camps there, my partner graduated there and I have had chance to explore the city before. It’s a superb part of the country and we believe the football club has so much potential.”
Horst joined the board last year and has seen Karl Robinson’s side face a number of teething problems before finishing the season in fine form.
“There have been challenges, fans know that, but nobody expected the start the team had and for them to finish by getting 27 points from the last 12 games was a great effort. Visiting the training ground it really struck me that this was a group of players and staff who had been through a lot together and come out of it stronger on the playing side, and we will strengthen that. But also the business model is now much clearer and we have a common goal at Board level with really clear plans of where we want this club to go.
“We are very lucky to have Tiger who is a fantastic person who knows how to work with and help people at all levels. He knows the players, knows their character and really cares a lot about them. For the rest of us we maybe have to hold back a little because players don’t want to be meeting businessmen all the time! They want to concentrate on winning football games. Our job is more to stand behind the club and help in any way we can. Results can go up and down but we have to be constant and consistent in the way we run the club and I believe that will get us to where the fans want to be.”
The Board are in regular contact but Horst also plans to return to the Kassam Stadium early next season.
“I’ll be looking when the fixtures come out and if I can then I will be at the first home game. I enjoyed being around the club the other week and am looking forward to coming back. We met a lot of fans and I want to get to know more about their club. I know a lot about the business side of the club now and we will get the financial side of things right, and right now we have a summer to build on what we did last year and see if we can finish higher next time around.”