Yoga, Transfer windows & Future Ownership models
Weeknotes — week starting Jan 11
This week has been one of those classic weeks where the best laid plans to do some thinking and strategic work are shuffled to the side as urgent deadlines pop up.
We’re looking to recruit in this window so this week has involved a lot of conversations, discussions, networks. Sometimes things move quickly, sometimes it seems to take way too long, which was part of the Board meeting discussion on Monday evening. Hopefully some news to announce pretty soon.
- Not me alas, but we run yoga sessions for the first team on Monday evenings, which have gone online. The pandemic silver lining? We’ve opened them up to all our youth pathway teams too, so now they get to downward dog and pigeon alongside the first team! We’ve worked out a solid programme not only to keep the youth players engaged (they’re not classified as elite so can’t train right now) but actually, again, seeing this as an unusual opportunity to do lots of things we don’t normally have time for — such as tactics and match analysis, learning great strength and conditioning technique, having sessions on nutrition, sessions on sports psych — all led online by the first team coaching crew.
Dealing with postponements
We’ve just had to share the announcement that our game v Blackburn will be postponed this Sunday, following a COVID outbreak in the Blackburn squad. I’m incredibly disappointed since every single postponement edges us closer to not being able to complete the season, but I hope the players get well soon and don’t have any long-lasting effects. This week I’ve been able to reflect on how proud I am of our entire squad and staff for remaining entirely COVID-free yet again.
- Podcast recording with the lovely Betsy Reed — all about discomfort. That should be coming out in a few weeks. I lvoe podcats that have themes that are slightly different to the usual (big fan of How to Fail by Elizabeth Day which is along this genre).
- Reuters interview around the FA Cup postponement and potential coin tossing (personally, there’s already a league cup for the elite teams. If we have to wait, we have to wait — we can’t take the opportunity away from the teams fighting to play).
- BBC interview regarding a new player signing TBC
- Onboarding a new colleague at the club — we have brought on a new financial controller as part of our ongoing professionalisation. Can’t wait for various processes to be eased and made more efficient! Welcome Biram!
- FA calls — on COVID, on the delay to the establishment of a new nationwide pathway framework for girls football which Lewes is waiting on with baited breath, since this is where we hope to prioritise a lot of attention, and on the future ownership options and scenarios for women’s football in the country. We’re keen to make sure that any future ownership model includes small clubs like ours and isn’t unintentionally (or otherwise) designed so that it’s unattainable to be a part of it, without being dependent on a big men’s club.
- The Players Podcast — it’s been out a while but I totally blitzed through all the episodes int he space of a few days. Bex Smith is a brilliant host and because she knows football inside and out as a player, the answers she gets out of some of the best players in the world, are amazing. Viv Miedema was very honest and open, Kelly Smith’s on-pitch-off-pitch Jekyll and Hyde fascinating, Erin Cuthbert hilarious, Nadia Nadim so driven, Izzy Christiansen and Haley Raso so resilient…
Chatting AND listening
- Wednesday evening we held our first global Town Hall meeting with our owners from around the world. We’ve held many a Fans Forum but the silver lining of lockdown has meant that now we’re online, owners from Chile, the US and Barcelona could also join!