One of my fellow Derry City Football Club Directors circulated a very interesting memo recently which gave some indication of what teams are prepared to spend to achieve success in League of Ireland football.
The memo in question was the financial breakdown for Sligo Rovers for 2013 and it shows that it cost E1.6million to, as they say, ‘keep the show on the road.’
Of course if you are spending that kind of money then you must be able to guarantee ‘success’ or the club could be in serious difficulties.
Sligo ‘survive’ because they had relative success and brought in nearly E400,000 in prizemoney and raised close to E450,000 in fundraising.
When one realises that this type of budget can be matched by Shamrock Rovers who have assembled a massive squad of talented players for the upcoming season, then it’s not hard to see the difficulties for a team such as Derry City trying to compete for honours.
We couldn’t, and wouldn’t even if finances allowed it, compete with this type of expenditure so any success we achieve must be secured within our means.
So we need to make Brandywell Stadium a tough place to come to and, over the long term, maintain our youth policy and also make ourselves difficult to beat when ‘on the road.’
That said, we couldn’t have a more difficult opening as the ‘Candy Stripes’ head to Tallaght to take on pre-season favourites Shamrock Rovers in our first competitive game.
The ‘sparring’ is over and it’s time for the real thing and we can only offer Roddy Collins and his squad our best wishes.
As the old saying goes, once the players step over the white line it’s out of our hands.