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Huddersfield chairman issues honest open letter to fans on club’s relegation to League One

Huddersfield Town chairman Kevin Nagle issues an honest open letter to fans on the club’s relegation from the second tier back to League One.

Nagle has taken full responsibility for what has been one of the most challenging years at John Smith’s Stadium in recent memory.

The Terriers finished second from bottom in the Championship, managing only 9 wins in their 46 matches under the management of Neil Warnock, Darren Moore, Jon Worthington, and Andre Breitenreiter.

Nagle, who completed his takeover of the club after their miraculous escape last year, remains fully committed to the long-term project of completely revamping the club.

It remains to be seen as to whether Breitenreiter will continue to lead the Terriers in the upcoming season with no decision has been made regarding the German’s position.

Breitenreiter joined the club in mid-February on a two-and-a-half-year contract but was unable to prevent their descent into the third tier of English football for the first time since 2012.

An open letter to Huddersfield Town supporters from Chairman Kevin Nagle…

Supporters,

Without meaning to state the obvious, this season has been far from easy. There hasn’t been enough to enjoy, and we now must embrace the challenge that relegation has presented us.

As you will know, last season I committed to taking over the Club regardless of our divisional status, because what we envisioned for Huddersfield Town then was a multi-year, long-term project to overhaul everything we do both on and off the field to create a team and institution to all be proud of.

In no uncertain terms, relegation to Sky Bet League One this season does not change that goal and ambition.

Since long before taking official operational control, were more than aware that fortunes would not change overnight from where we inherited the Club, and this season has taught us the hard way of the true scope of change that is needed, and we are fully committed to making that happen.

I am not in the business of making excuses, and I take full responsibility for the difficult season that we have endured together, but having had many questions asked of me throughout the season – the majority of which I have encouraged and invited – I believe our supporters are entitled to a more complete view of the tasks that we have had to face since taking over.

As we know, prior to our involvement, we had a great many harsh financial realities to face that a great number of factors had contributed to. We realised extremely early in our discovery process before taking control that a number of key areas would require increased funding to flourish and reach its potential, with our First Team squad, Academy and Club infrastructure at both the training ground and John Smith’s Stadium all ripe for further investment. They are all projects we have already begun, and are ongoing.

Sadly, due to the formalities of the takeover taking longer than anticipated, we could not begin this work as early as we would have liked, and for a number of reasons, our preparation as a whole for the 2023/24 season fell well below expectations and the standards we aspire to both as a sporting enterprise and a business.

What also became quickly evident was that, as a result of that past malaise, the culture of the Club was not conducive to a winning environment, both on and off the field. This is something we have already begun to repair. Of course, attempts and investments were made in January to help at First Team level, but in a difficult market and notoriously uncertain transfer window, we ultimately couldn’t do enough to change our fate.

Having found ourselves at the tail end of the league for two consecutive seasons, it is more than clear that change is needed. For you supporters, 10 of the last 12 seasons have been spent fighting relegation, and that’s a cycle we need to stop. Just as you do, we only want individuals at our Club, on and off the pitch, who want to work and give their all for Huddersfield Town.

That feeling will underline our approach to our summer trading. Being a part of the Huddersfield Town family is a privilege, and that won’t be allowed to be forgotten.

Long standing plans already in place will give our First Team the best possible chance to succeed next season, putting together a pre-season itinerary that will incorporate top class training facilities in Austria and ambitious friendly fixtures that will give the side a platform from which to leap into the new campaign. With the proper preparation, the fitness, intent and togetherness of our team should no longer be areas in which we are questioned.

Work on our infrastructure has already begun, too. You are aware of our ambition to take full control of our home at the John Smith’s Stadium for the first time since it was opened, and that has not changed. We are investing in our youth and our future, increasing the facilities at our training ground to give our Academy the platform from which it can flourish, and produce talent over time that is ready for our First Team.

We have also put in place a leadership group to oversee the day-to-day operations of the Club with the desire, ability and shared expertise to grow Huddersfield Town in areas that have previously been left unexplored, with further strategic appointments to be made and announced in the near future to further those ambitions.

Your frustration, anger, disbelief, antipathy and hurt is not only shared, but understood. While we cannot take back the season that is now behind us and undo overnight the problems of old that have been allowed to fester for too long, we can seek to learn from the past and do better going forward, and it is my feeling that we already are.

This can’t happen again, and we won’t allow it to – you have my word.

Tomorrow, we will launch our 2024/25 Season Cards and begin to look to the future. We hope to see you all there alongside us once again.

UTT.

Kevin Nagle
Owner and Chairman, Huddersfield Town

This is how fans reacted as the Huddersfield chairman issues an honest open letter to fans on the club’s relegation to League One…

@craigsaddy: That’s all very well but we just need actions now. And really quick.

@WillOnYT: Austria pre season tour sounds exciting, sounds a bit more inticing than pub teams in Cornwall 😆, but I do hope there is a clear out from top to bottom to come and get in a squad with a winning mentality and players that play for the badge 💪🏻

@conradcarter66: The issue started with getting rid of NW. it was a disastrous decision which has ultimately led to us getting relegated. Neil could have helped the transition in an orderly fashion helping getting the right man for the job. I have no doubt NW would have kept us up. Poor decision

@QPRReport: Think @htafc made a mistake in not sticking with Neil Warnock?

@_THATFUTGUY_: I think people should stop the negativity towards Kevin. The club has been in consistent decline for years and if anything, we have over performed to stay in the Championship for so long. This was always bound to happen and I personally believe the owner will create something.

@htafc_sam: He’s a good egg 🥚 give him a chance he hasn’t reached this level of success by mistake in Nagle we trust utt !!!!!

@Jamesdunningto5: Link worked fine for me. The passion is there from @KevinNagleMLS – I have been the first to have ago at him this season. Let’s hope the words become actions and filter through from top to bottom. This season has been horrific – it can’t continue. 🤞 It’s upwards now

@HD8Terrier: Lots of hard work to do, let’s get to work! Exciting future ahead!

@DavidBeaumontHT: We don’t know who the manager will be, we don’t know who this leadership team will be, we don’t know who will be playing for us. But tomorrow he’s going to ask us all to buy season tickets.

@andymortby: Doesn’t say much other than you’re hurting too @KevinNagleMLS Looking forward to the video diary, hopefully tomorrow is the start of drawing a line and looking forward #htafc

@hudders222: A lot of waffle to be honest Kev! You’ve not really told us anything!

@SpencerHerbie: Fair play Kev…ill book the hotels to London for next May now👀

@Kendo777777: Season card increases most definitely. Many fans will not bother if they go up. Less revenue.

@superterrier: I got into 1st time of asking!!!

@doodlejp: Thanks for the letter @KevinNagleMLS but not sure how you can claim to feel the same anger /disappointment when only 12 months ago you hadn’t heard of us. We have fans who have had this club in their blood for generations. You’re not one of us, sounds harsh I know, but it’s true.

@GaryTalbot7: From prem to L1 in 5 years is unacceptable

@PaulWhi7667814: I am renewing my season card as well as both my grandsons cards.

@BacunaTrim46: Good to see @KevinNagleMLS being open and transparent, as football fans all we want is to feel optimistic about the future of our club and I have full faith that we are in safe hands. These next few months are huge, but it’s clear that Kevin and those around him are aware of this

@mitchell989: Although he does accept responsibility, the book does stop with him I think he’s been naive and like many owners it’s a huge wake up call, fingers crossed he accepts some of his short comings and builds a management team who can take us forward. Massive summer for us #htafc

@_YorkshireLass_: It is a great read. Nothing against you but we have heard it all before in the past. I hear your passion and look forward to see your words become actions. Thank you 😊

@HotlineHtafc_: Appreciate the transparency Kev. Very much hoping that Andre decides to stay on. Bring on the diary tomorrow.

@GamerJamesFM: Really good letter Kevin, I for one really appreciate your candor and openness with us. I assume the one last thing you’re waiting for is André’s decision. Whatever happens, I am excited by the coming summer, and am looking forward to seeing how the squad looks next season 💙

@domino123467: A great read for me, unfortunately I think some can’t see the same as myself. You’ve excepted full responsibility what more can you add? We will be back UTT

@sirajexpress: “10 of the last 12 seasons have been spent fighting relegation, and that’s a cycle we need to stop.” Is an important observation (arguably this league status has a longer history). So a major transformation & big challenge to pivot it out of postive aspects of our club history

@CMcGinnies: Appreciate the update Kevin. This is now such a key summer on and off the pitch. It’s one we have to get right and I’m sure you have things in place already. But we have to act fast. We must hit the ground running next season. I for one think next season could be a great one! UTT

@Lambypie_: I’m having my season card again always in the hope to see goals, win games and push towards the top of a league for once. Plus I know you’re putting your money where your mouth is and you’ll be and are true to your words.

@KazzFTBL: Let Kevin cook. See you next season @KevinNagleMLS UTT

@FilmsCharlie: I’ve absolutely zero issue with this whatsoever. More than a chairman is obliged to say and I’m pleased there’s finally investment in infrastructure.

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