From the Boardroom

Joint-Chairman David Gold says co-operation is vital to the continued success of the English Premier League…

Hello everyone,

I spent last Thursday and Friday at the Premier League Annual General Meeting in Harrogate, where I was joined by my fellow Chairmen and Chief Executives from the 19 other clubs.

The Premier League goes from strength to strength, it is as simple as that, both in terms of its success and the fantastic work that it does for so many good causes that we all sign up to.

Most of what we discussed has to remain private, but we did receive interesting presentations from our broadcast partners Sky Sports and NBC Sports from the United States.

One thing I can tell you is that the meeting culminated with the presentation of the four Premier League trophies – the senior title to Leicester City, the U21 Premier League trophy to Manchester United, the U18 Premier League trophy to Manchester City and of course the U21 Premier League Cup to ourselves!

It had not occurred to me that I would be presented with the Cup, so I was so excited to receive it when it was announced that the winners were West Ham United.

To get up in front of all the Chairmen and Chief Executives was wonderful and well done to our U21s and to our Academy Director Terry Westley. Congratulations to Terry and the lads, because it was great to win the Cup when we beat Hull and a great moment for me personally on Thursday evening.
It had not occurred to me that I would be presented with the Cup, so I was so excited to receive it when it was announced that the winners were West Ham United
The Premier League is all about collaboration and promoting the league around the world and that’s what makes it the greatest league on the planet. It’s important that we continue to attract the best players from around the world.

Our meeting is very much about discussing whether we are doing the right things, what we can do better and what we can improve, whether that be the technology to help match officials, the behaviour of our players or the facilities we provide our supporters.

All those kind of things are part and parcel of what the Premier League do to ensure we deliver a product which is the best in the world.

I mentioned there about the Premier League attracting the best players and the summer transfer window is almost upon us.

Our aim, as it has been every year, is to get stronger as a football club, both on the pitch and in terms of our fan base.

Of course we receive income from our broadcast deals and sponsors, but a huge part of our success is down to our supporters. Who could have believed we would sell out a 60,000-capacity stadium, but we’ve done it!

The fans play a big part in the strength of a football club. We need a decent Board, a manager with passion and a will to win and players who want to go that extra mile, but we have those things coming together at the same time that we’re experiencing.

We have plucked gems out of the French league and the Championship in the past year and we will be looking to do likewise again this summer.

What we have to ensure now is that we keep that momentum going when we move to the new Stadium, and that means we will be bringing in some new players to replace the four loan players who have left us – Carl Jenkinson, Victor Moses, Emmanuel Emenike and Alex Song. Our intention is to replace them with better quality.

Of course we have already shown our intent by bringing in Havard Nordtveit, a talented Norwegian player who our fans will enjoy.

The other part of this which is coming together is the group of youth players coming through the ranks – Reece Oxford and Reece Burke are two of the most-talented young defenders coming through in this country.

Then you have Martin Samuelsen who made his full international debut this week and I hope it is only a matter of time before he emerges into the first team.

We didn’t win the U21 Cup I was presented with on Thursday because we have poor players – it is because they are special young players and I look forward to seeing their continued development.