Good luck Julian, actions speak louder than words

Tuesday, 22 September 2020, 7:55
2 mins read

So yesterday the club officially welcomed new Chief Executive Julian Winter into his new role and it was accompanied by the expected press release, one that has been trotted out a few times in the past and one that will – as ever – need to be backed up with the actions to go with the words.

Winter officially took his place yesterday having been appointed on the day that Trevor Birch departed the club for Spurs just a couple of short weeks ago.  He comes in with the club facing huge financial challenges due to the Covid-19 pandemic that has seen football played behind closed doors since returning in June and with stricter measures coming in everywhere is likely to be behind closed doors for some time yet.

Winter is an experienced CEO within football and therefore will always be saying the right things on appointment, all of which were included in his statement released via the club’s official website yesterday.

It is an honour to be part of Swansea City, and I will give my all in ensuring this club is the best it can possibly be on and off the pitch.

I have always kept a close eye on Swansea City, more so since Brendan Rodgers – who was the manager at Watford during my time there – took over at the Liberty.

Today is my first day in my role as chief executive, and one of the first things I want to do is to spend time engaging with staff, shareholders, the Supporters’ Trust and fans – I want to hear from you all.

I have already been in contact with Andy Godden and Stuart McDonald from the Supporters’ Trust as part of my appointment. I understand the Trust are a key stakeholder and are important in this club’s future, so I will be communicating with them on a regular basis.

I am looking forward to speaking with fans about the club and getting your views on every part of what we do. I am also very open on hearing creative ways to improve communication, so I am keen to listen to your ideas. – Julian Winter

They are all very encouraging noises and very much in line with what Birch said on his appointment to the club just under 18 months ago.  They also echo some of the views of Kaplan and Levien in their statements but we have to hope that the ‘guy on the ground’ is more true to his word than the two from across the pond who have been noticeably absent from the club since its relegation from the Premier League.

Winter will take his place on the club board alongside the other directors together with new investor Jake Silverstein who loaned the club some money a month back with the option to turn that into equity over the course of time.

For Swans fans, words are all very well and we are well versed over many years to hearing what is being said but waiting back to see those words backed up with actions.  A healthy dose of scepticism is always right for me in the early days and wait for the words to be backed with actions.  Speaking to the Chair and Supporter Director of the Trust is a very good start but it is very easy to seek input and then disregard it when making decisions as the majority owners have demonstrated over the course of time.

All we ever want as fans is the best for the football club and if Mr Winter demonstrates that at all times then he will be a great addition to the club.  Time will tell on this one.

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.

Phil Sumbler

Been watching the Swans since the very late 1970s and running the Planet Swans website (in all its current and previous guises since the summer of 2001 As it stood was right at the forefront of some of the activity against Tony Petty back in 2001, breaking many of the stories of the day as fans stood against the actions where the local media failed. Was involved with the Swans Supporters Trust from 2005, for the large part as Chairman before standing down in the summer of 2020.

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