Chairman's MessageSaturday, 7th May 2011
John Yorkston's column from the Souvenir Supplement in The Game, the Pars award winning programme
I am delighted to be writing this message of thanks today to so many people who have helped to secure Dunfermline Athletic's place back in the Scottish Premier League.
Firstly, I want to thank most sincerely my fellow directors and a special fan who generously dipped into their pockets in January to help us to secure the additional players that the manager had sought to sustain his challenge.As it transpired there was good judgement all round and we were able to bring in the kind of quality that helped us to get over the line.Football club directors don't always get a good press but I hope on this occasion that you will agree that they have done Dunfermline Athletic proud.
We made another piece of good judgement three and a half years ago when we decided to appoint Jim McIntyre as our manager.Jim, together with his Assistant Gerry McCabe and the rest of the coaching team, have done a marvellous job.I've said many times already that it isn't just winning the title that has pleased me but the manner in which it has been achieved.Jim has ensured that we have been treated to good football that demonstrates style and flair, and I'm sure that we'll see more of the same in the SPL.
As Jim himself would say, if you don't have the players, you don't have anything. At Dunfermline we've been fortunate to have a bunch of extremely talented players, and perhaps just as important, a happy bunch of players. The sense of team spirit has been there all season, even when we weren't at our best. They've also got a great sense of humour, like when they ambushed me last weekend!I was well and truly mugged and we'll not go there for now, but I would like to thank them for their tremendous skill and courage.
There are a great many other people at the club who deserve our thanks - office staff and ground staff, and our volunteers.We've had to cut back on non-football staff this season but those that have remained have had to work very hard, particularly during the recent very busy period.I'd like to make special mention of our hospitality and catering staff who have shown what a fantastic place East End Park is for a great day out.Congratulations too to our match programme team who scooped the award for best First Division programme again.
Finally, our fans have, a bit like the team itself, come good when it really mattered.To see the stadium packed with Dunfermline supporters for the Raith Rovers match was a wonderful sight, and something that I hope we might repeat today.We've had amazing support from our fans in recent weeks and they deserve the celebration that they are now about to enjoy.It does show the potential that this football club has and I just hope that our fans will stick with us into next season.
Next season will be another challenge again, but one which I am really looking forward to.The SPL have still to vote on structures but we expect that it will be one team for relegation next time.However, whatever happens, our aim is to stay up - it is as simple as that.We believe that we are equal to a number of clubs currently in the SPL, and with the attributes of a great management team and skilful players, there will be nothing for us to fear.
Thanks again to everyone who has helped Dunfermline Athletic to achieve its ambition this season, and we look forward to joining forces with you again in 2011/12.