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Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter says club will start new season

Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter has stated the club will start the new season – but there are still challenges ahead.

Mr Parmenter made the entire playing staff available for free transfer at the start of this month after they rejected a 20% reduction in pay.

Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter. Picture: Tony Flashman
Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter. Picture: Tony Flashman

Since then, the likes of player/coach Lee Worgan , Bobby-Joe Taylor and Nassim L’Ghoul have all left Crabble.

Dover still need to reduce their wage bill and Mr Parmenter revealed that six players at the National League club are still to agree to a wage cut.

In an interview with the club’s DAFCtv channel , Mr Parmenter said: “We’re still facing some tremendous challenges and some very difficult times.

“We know that we can now start the season and we’re going to work hard to make sure we can get through the season but it would be wrong to pretend that we’re not facing some more challenges.

“The big one is that we’re trying to cut the wage bill. Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to agree with all of the players. Five have agreed, along with the management team, to cut their salaries whereas six haven’t done.

“Unfortunately, the six that haven’t done are the six highest-paid players and we won’t cut some without others. We won’t punish some members of staff to subsidise others so at the moment we’re still paying full salaries.

“The five that have agreed are off the transfer list, the six that haven’t agreed are very much on the transfer list. Part of balancing our books will be to try and move some of those players on or hopefully to get some sort of agreement with the players as a group so that we can balance our books.”

Another cost-saving measure has been the decision to change the club’s training base from K Sports in Cobdown to Crabble.

“We’re not training at our training ground to try and save money,” added Mr Parmenter. “We’re going to be training here at Crabble four days a week which will give us some cost saving. Every area of the club where we can, we’re cutting our costs.”

Dover, who announced a new kit deal with supplier Kappa this week, are also looking for a new shirt sponsor.

They’ve received great financial support from supporters in recent weeks – it shows “that people care” said Mr Parmenter – while there should be some new faces in the playing squad shortly.

“Our policy is very clear,” he said. “We’ve got 30 players training at the moment. We had 11 signed on when we started and by the end of this week we’re hoping to have 15, going towards a squad of 18 or 19.

“We won’t hurry with the others because we know exactly what we’re looking for. It has to fit in with our cost availability and there’s a lot of players out there looking for jobs.”

The Dover chairman also asked supporters to purchase a season ticket if possible. He added; “It helps with the finances but also with the Covid pandemic we need to put facilities in place at the ground which will be easier to do if we have a majority of season-ticket holders.”

The National League season is due to start on October 3.

Read more: All the latest sports news in Kent

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