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Club News


22 November 2017

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Here are the From the Boardroom programme notes from the Carlisle United edition of This Is Our Town, written by club Finance Director, Simon Gibb.

We welcome Carlisle and their loyal fans who have made the long trip down tonight. They arrive at Luton after a sixgame unbeaten run in the league – three wins and three draws – and on the back of a good win away to Grimsby at the weekend and a 4-0 thumping of Yeovil at home the week before.

As a boy I remember watching Keith Curle, their manager. He was a high quality, well organised central defender in his time and I am sure that reflects in his team today.

We had two tough games with them last season, drawing 1-1 here and 0-0 up there, and we both suffered heartache in the play-offs, with Carlisle being beaten in injury-time, like us, by a goal for Exeter by Jack Stacey, of course now a firm favourite in our own team! They are on the up again this season and a good away side, so it will be up to us to counter that progress tonight.

We couldn't really come to the game in better spirits after Saturday's excellent performance against our local rivals Cambridge. So often local games are tense and tight affairs. Who would have predicted seven goals again to maintain our position as the top scorers in the top four divisions!

It is great to be back in the automatic promotion places again and a good win tonight could secure top spot again, which would be fantastic before heading up to Crewe at the weekend.

The manner in which the team are playing with freedom and enjoyment is testament to the spirit within the squad, and it was good to see Elliot Lee contributing a brace on Saturday along with a special from his brother!

Goals are, of course, critical in any team's success, but also this season they are coming from many sources within the team – indeed, of Saturday's starting XI, only Glen Rea hadn't scored this season, which speaks volumes for the way the lads are contributing.

Despite all the goals, we shouldn't forget the defensive side where we also have the joint second best goals against records as well. All in all, we are in good shape at this stage of the season and looking forward to consolidating in a busy period ahead.

On Saturday we head to Gresty Road looking to push on further. We are already aware that many of you are travelling up and we really appreciate that support and the monies you spend in following us around the country so avidly, as you do.

The FA Cup game the following weekend at Gateshead has been switched by the FA to Sunday afternoon. We understand some supporters will have already made travel plans for Saturday, but unfortunately we are bound by the FA's decision in these situations with TV selections. We do always let you know on the website as soon as we know ourselves of any changes to try to minimise your disruption. Hopefully many of you will still make the long journey, and we appreciate your wonderful, committed travelling support.

It has been an excellent few weeks off the field as well with Nathan Jones getting League Two Manager of the Month, Gary Sweet picking up a well deserved CEO of the Year award for League Two and Rob Stringer – one of our Vice Presidents – receiving a major award from the music industry for his enormous contributions. These three are all part of the strong team contributing to the exciting progress we are making as a Club both on and off the field, for which we are all very grateful. Thank you, gentlemen.

You may have been aware of the review this week by the BBC which highlighted some of the costs of supporting your team and tried to make comparisons.

The information provided by the research teams was interesting to us all, but also as always with the press was positioned to raise comment!

We as a club always try to position our prices as very fair and in line with equivalent clubs at this level, and you will know that our pricing of season tickets, match tickets and replica shirts has remained fairly static over the past few years and prices have increased at below inflation, particularly when you consider the discounts that we offer through our Diamond schemes and junior and concession initiatives.

One flaw with the BBC numbers was that they were based on full adult prices and didn't take into account these important discounts. One area we were slightly less favourable was catering, and as I mentioned in my previous notes we are on that case. We are looking to improve the quality, range and speed of service over the next few months.

There is not too much at this stage to update on the new stadium development other than to say that the process continues to progress in the right direction, albeit slightly more slowly than we had hoped!

One new initiative we have put in place has been to open up our site on Power Court to car parking. By doing this we will be able to raise some income to offset professional costs of the new stadium planning work. We also hope that some of you may park there on match days to ease congestion around the ground, whilst contributing at the same time to the club's exciting future.

Finally, this week is Black Friday week and we have some excellent deals at the club shops and online all week, so take a look if you get a chance and you may catch few bargains!

I look forward to seeing and talking to some of you around the ground tonight. Please feel free to stop me with any thoughts and suggestions.

Enjoy the game. COYH!

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