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Chairman & Manager on Deadline Day & Today's Game

1 February 2020

Read from Chairman Phil Wallace and hear from Manager Graham Westley's Management Team following the conclusion of the January Transfer Window ahead of today's match against Leyton Orient...

"Welcome to The Great Escape! We were all disappointed with the result at Grimsby but have to now make sure that we hit promotion form for the last 16 games of the season.

"We brought in a new management team in GW and Mike Nelson and have added several new players since GW’s arrival; Diaguely Dabo, Jake Cassidy, Joe Leesley (loan), Dan Kemp (loan), Simeon Jackson, Patrick Reading, Canice Carroll and Ben Folami (loan) have all joined The Great Escape.

"Eight new incoming players meant that GW was not at all happy with the squad he inherited and we have backed him with a major overhaul, adding players in key positions where GW felt the need to improve or provide a stronger competition for places.

"This of course comes at a huge financial cost as we have been unable to move as many players the other way as we would like, to pay for this activity. This is one of the problems of football – when an employee isn’t considered suitable you only have two options – keep him around until the end of his contract or allow him to go to another club and pay the difference in wages.

"At this time of year, clubs smell blood and the offers to take over players contracts are few and far between. It is all very well to say the latter option is the right one, but the difference in wages has to be found and that is an expensive business.

"Balancing this we have the need to develop and maintain a fighting spirit in the squad, to have everyone onside. We have to make sure only players that are up for The Great Escape play a part in our last 16 games of this season.

"This of course is GW’s decision. I have told him that this is his gig and The Great Escape is in his hands until the last ball is kicked this season. He was the one that got us into the EFL and it is right that he should be the one fighting every day to keep us from falling out of it.

"One thing is for sure – those of us involved are giving every scrap of energy, every minute of our time, every ounce of determination and every sinew in our body to win enough matches to remain in the EFL.

"We can’t do anything about the past, but we can do something about what is in front of us. Every one of these new lads has been recruited to fight alongside us – and fight we will!

"Enjoy The Great Escape!"

Watch Graham Westley and the Management Team deliver today's Programme Notes in Video Format:

Please click here to view or download the Stevenage vs Leyton Orient Digital Matchday Programme.

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