Huw Jenkins says Graeme Jones and Kevin Reeves both want to join Roberto Martinez at Wigan Athletic.
The Swansea City chairman has explained in detail the latest news regarding why Martinez’s move to the JJB Stadium has yet to be completed.
A press conference was planned to unveil Martinez as the Latics’ new manager, but it was cancelled as the two clubs haven’t agreed on a compensation package for the backroom staff, who are all expected to follow Martinez.
|“Huw Jenkins is a legend”|
The Swans have been hindered by the delay in Martinez completing his move as it means we’ve been unable to appoint his replacement.
Paul Tisdale is likely to stay at Exeter, Graeme Jones will join Martinez at Wigan so the only name in the frame for the job at the moment is Gary Speed.
Wigan Athletic’s chief executive Brenda Spencer said in the press conference earlier today that they couldn’t confirm Martinez’s appointment as a compensation fee hasn’t been agreed for the backroom staff.
She was critical of Swansea City, saying we hadn’t mentioned anything about the backroom staff, but then again why should we when we were doing our best to keep them?
You can read her statement here
Losing Graeme Jones and Kevin Reeves is a huge blow to the club as both have played key roles along with Martinez in achieving success. Chief scout Kevin Reeves was able to spot bargain quality players such as Ferrie Bodde, Angel Rangel and Jason Scotland.
Huw Jenkins said:
‘I think it’s important that our supporters are kept fully aware of the situation surrounding Roberto and our backroom staff.
‘As everyone is already aware, we reluctantly agreed compensation with Wigan for Roberto a week ago after taking into account his wish to leave Swansea City. This compensation figure was only in regards to the loss of Roberto.
‘We were asked at 10.45am this morning (Thursday) to waive our right to compensation for Graeme Jones and Kevin Reeves until next week. We felt this was not the right thing for us to do as a club and we owed it to our fans to remain in a position of strength.
‘As with Roberto, we have made every effort to persuade both Graeme and Kevin to stay with us, but they made it clear that their allegiance was with Roberto first rather than SwanseaCity.
‘Roberto and Wigan were both fully aware that we wanted compensation for them both; not just to buy out their contracts, but for the vast amount of knowledge and experience they hold.
‘Kevin Reeves, for example, as chief scout has been responsible for player recruitment at this club for the last three years. If he left, then he would not only take with him his vast knowledge of potential new signings for this summer, but also for future seasons.
‘To lose our manager is bad enough, but to think we would also lose our assistant-manager and chief scout for nothing in the same compensation agreement as Roberto’s is unfair and disrespectful to our football club and our fans.
‘I don’t want to have any bad relations with Wigan Football Club, even though the loss of our manager and possibly some of our backroom staff has clearly ripped the heart out of our football club with regards to what we have achieved in the last two and a half years.
‘I firmly believe we have been more than fair with Wigan because it has already been a week since everything was agreed with them over Roberto.
‘It’s dragged on far too long. We’ve been left in limbo for the last seven to 10 days and it has clearly and severely hampered our search for a potential successor and our preparations for the new season.
‘I can only apologise to our supporters for all the uncertainty. It’s been a massive set-back for us all and personally, as chairman, I still haven’t come to terms with the events of the last seven to 10 days.
‘But we need to put that behind us now; focus quickly and fully on recruiting the right person to prepare us for the new season and drive us forward from there.
‘With the season nearly upon us and the challenges we have ahead of us, it’s vital everyone within the club, the players and supporters focus on the new era.
‘It’s vital everyone remains united together and fully behind whoever is appointed as the new manager and, more importantly, fully committed behind Swansea City Football Club and whatever challenges lie ahead of us.”
Quotes taken from the Official website – swanseacity.net