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Championship comes before sentimentality
THERE can be no room for sentiment at Swindon Town as the Robins aim for back to back promotions, according to interim chairman Jeremy Wray.
Following elevation from League Two last term, Town’s management have set the target of a return to the Championship within two years.
To do that boss Paolo Di Canio wants to rebuild his playing staff, meaning several of the squad which claimed the League Two title are set to be offloaded.
And Wray has stressed that, while the club will be forever thankful to those individuals who will leave the County Ground in the coming days, emotions must be put to one side if Swindon are to match their ambitions in the coming months.
“You’re sympathetic in terms of saying ‘these are good guys’ but I’m not in the business of being too emotional about the whole thing. Football’s not like that,” he said.
“If we’re committed to what we say and we are genuine to what we say to Paolo - that we are trying to build a team that goes straight to the Championship - there isn’t any room for that type of sentiment, unfortunately, otherwise you’ll end up with a squad of 40 players who are all terribly nice guys but 25 of them aren’t quite good enough for where you need to be going next.
“You can’t do that, so you can’t shy away from the having the conversation of saying ‘thanks very much, you’ve done a great job, you’ve got us where we need to go but for the next jump we believe we’re going to need to bring other people in.’”
Town are expected to start announcing their summer signings this week, with Di Canio keen to bring in up to eight new faces before the beginning of next season.
But Wray emphasised that the Italian believes many of the current crop are good enough to forge a career in English football’s second tier.
“He (Di Canio) has been quite open that some of the people here, he’s got no doubt that they can go all the way and be part of his plans all the way through,” he said.
“Others he feels have reached a level or are at a level where he can’t be confident that they’re not good enough to carry us forward and that’s why he’s looking at bringing in seven or eight players.”