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Ashton: We're Trying to Change the Culture of the Club
Tuesday, 9th Nov 2021 10:10

CEO Mark Ashton says the Blues new owners are trying to change the culture of the club and says those working for Town had previously been working “under really difficult circumstances”.

At last night’s fans’ forum it was put to Ashton, who took over as CEO in June following the Gamechanger takeover, that former manager Paul Lambert had if nothing else revealed “how rotten the club was behind the scenes” and was asked how rotten it really was prior to the takeover.

“That’s a really hard question to answer,” Ashton considered. “Don’t underestimate, there’s a lot of people, and some of my team are sitting at the front here, they’re blooming hard-working people, they really are, and they have been for a very, very long time.

“A number of these people have served this club for many, many years under really difficult circumstances and I would get myself into trouble if I told you what some of those circumstances were, but they’ve worked really hard whether that’s at Portman Road or at the training ground.

“Rotten isn’t a word that I would like to use. What I would say to you is that when you’re a CEO in this industry, it’s not a job, it’s a way of life, it’s just the way it has to be. It’s the same for [manager] Paul [Cook] as a manager, it’s a total commitment, there are no days off, you lose and it affects you, you win and it affects you. You have to be totally committed.

“I just think it’s been a challenge for all the people at the club not to have someone here with the authority to make decisions and the authority to lead on a day-to-day basis because when that person’s not in place, it leaves a vacuum and that causes challenges in whatever business you’re in.

“We can talk about the past and how the club’s been run and things that have gone wrong and not been how the fans would like it all day long.

“But you know what, all I can impact on and all Paul can impact and all [chairman] Mike [O'Leary] can impact and all [Gamechanger director] Ed [Schwartz] can impact is the massive space in front of us, and honestly I get up every morning and I am so excited by the opportunity at this football club.

“I’ve been blown away by the welcome the welcome the fans have given us. I’m blown away by the size of the fanbase and the continual numbers, huge numbers that fans come to Portman Road in and travel away in, it is incredible.

“What I would say is we’re trying to change culture. We’re trying to do things differently. Hopefully that will bring success, but you’ve heard me say this before, I can’t do it on my own, Paul can’t, players can’t, we can only do it together and I genuinely and passionately believe that if we stick together through the tough and the good times, we can take this club together back where it belongs, and that’s right at the top flight. I really believe that.”

Photo: James Ager

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ArnieM added 10:33 - Nov 9
Id say that’s a pretty damning indictment of the previous owners era. But as fans of this great Club, we all knew that didn’t we.

BaddowBlue1 added 10:56 - Nov 9
We probably never really recovered from going into Administration but the likes of Joe Royle did wonders on what was a shoestring budget but with some talented youngsters coming through (I do wonder what he could have achieved if Evans had given him some of the cash he splashed to Keano). Personally I believe that the guts inside the club was ripped out with the 2009 high profile managerial appointment with lots of staff leaving. One day we will hear about MM and Lamberts time at the club providing they havent been made to sign a non-disclosure agreement before being shown the door. Our club WAS slowly dying in front of us and we must be very, very grateful that the new owners have given us the opportunity to believe in the club again. Well done Mr Ashton and all of those behind the scenes that work tirelessly at turning ITFC around.

dieselmorris added 10:57 - Nov 9
yes you are right arnie, when you get one of the new owners saying they could make money in the championship and the previous regime saying they were making 6 million loss season on season. selling anything that they could make money, as a friend of mine says all the time, : you couldn't make it up

IPSWICHMOUSE added 12:49 - Nov 9
Gamechanger HAVE to make their investment work ,as it is a pension fund at the end of the day......They WILL commit & do everything possible to make that happen...I ,for one , want to be on that journey for the next few seasons because i know we will get to the PREM sooner rather than later.....Our fans are & always have been fantastic , so let's get BIGGER crowds in & show the football world what a small Town football club can achieve once again....COYB..ITID....

Bluearmy_81 added 12:56 - Nov 9
Arnie, did we all know it?! I did and you did but some used to come out with things like "thank god we've got Evans" and "could be worse, could be Bury!" Unbelievable really that some fans were prepared to set the bar so low for THEIR club. Never again

atty added 15:18 - Nov 9
I think we did know that having a majority shareholder( not a Chairman, Director or even an employee) trying to micro manage the Club from a distance, with just one yes man/mouthpiece in situ at the Club was not the way to run a football Club or any sizeable business/organisation. Oh yeah and just two Directors we never saw or heard from. Anyway, as Ashton says, we leave all that behind and look forward.

istanblue added 18:13 - Nov 9
And yet there are some that continue to say Evans was a good owner and that we should be grateful to him lmfao

Suffolkboy added 22:52 - Nov 9
What our NEW TOP man has to say ,even if with care and discretion , is so so relevant !
For years it’s been very very evident M E either wasn’t too interested , or hadn’t a real clue, about how to set up a functioning Management team and structure to run ITFC .He seemingly always failed to give away his authority ,and there was absolutely no route or commitment to effecting change or indeed any improvements within the business .
But we must now look forward with real and renewed hope !

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