First on the agenda this month was a question and answer session with Club first team manager Neal Ardley. This covered a wide range of issues, including Neal’s perspective on last season and what he had learnt most from the experience; the summer’s recruitment plans; the style of play for next season and how the squad was adapting to it; the long-term benefits that the new backroom team would bring to the Club; and Neal’s perspective on the use of specialist sports psychologists based on last season’s experiences.
Finally, the Board asked Neal what he would like most from them in terms of help and support. Neal replied that, as had been the case last season, he would most appreciate ongoing positive feedback when the Board felt he was on the right path, and to persevere in doing what he believed was right for the success of the team, and the Club long-term.
At the end of a full and frank conversation, the Board thanked Neal for his hard work and success in retaining the Club’s Football League status, and wished him and his staff a successful 2013/14 season.
At that point Neal left the meeting, and there then followed a lengthy and detailed discussion about the current position on a possible new stadium in Merton, and possible next steps.
Also discussed was a workshop, planned by the Future Strategy working group, for the Football Club and Dons Trust boards to identify and explore the key issues and challenges associated with a new stadium.
Finally, the Board formally recorded its thanks to all those volunteers who, together, had done such a fantastic job in preparing the stadium for the forthcoming season.
Minutes of the meeting will be published on the DT website shortly after the August meeting.