Karl Speaks to the Official WebsiteIn the first of a two-part interview, Blackpool FC Chairman Karl Oyston sits down with the official website to discuss the club's search for a new manager and plans for next season.
Karl, the dust has barely settled on this season but planning is well underway for the next one.
Yes, we started planning several months before the season ended - for either eventuality. Fortunately we're still a Championship club and you could say it's luck, but I think Barry and his team did very well to keep us in The Championship. They were arguably dealt a boorish hand so it was touch and go, but I'm pleased we're still in The Championship because that gives us a good base to build from.
Barry has obviously given an interview in Scotland today about his future, what's the latest with regard to the managerial search?
We're looking for a manager, we need a full-time manager and Barry very kindly took over as a caretaker for us. I think we probably need to go a different way than we have done over the past few years and look at all our options, which is what we're doing at the moment.
What credentials are you looking for from a new manager?
I think we need to make sure that whoever we get comes in and brings a fresh approach, style and emphasis. We're now lucky that we've got more opportunities to bring youth players through because we've got a good youth setup that's going really well. It would be a shame if we allowed a manager to come in that didn't take advantage of that and work and encourage the youth, and actually give them a chance in the team whenever we can.
I'd also like someone who does more work, not just on the training pitch but more work with the players on fitness and brings them back in the afternoon for one-on-one sessions, and deals with injuries slightly differently. I think it has been far too easy to be injured at this club over the last couple of seasons. It is important that we do all we can - for them and us - to make sure that players come in and put the time in to recuperate, get back fit and get back in the squad and available for selection.
As far as recruitment goes, we need to change our recruitment policy and methods and certainly do a bit more homework on the character, as well as what they can do for us as a player. We definitely need players to move into the area so if that means a different relocation policy, longer-term contracts or a combination of the two then that's something that we're going to have to shift upon. Travelling two and three hours a day can't be good for a player. That can't possibly lead you to get the best from them or be conducive to them coming back in the afternoons, or to do more work and more hours which is what we need to have.
In terms of players with options on contracts - an early decision was made on Tom Barkhuizen's - will that be a decision for the new manager to make or a club one, given timings?
We're very keen to get a manager in as quickly as we possibly can, dependent on the club that the manager is maybe at and depending who it is. We're keen to make an early decision and involve any manager in the option decisions. If we're not in that position then we'll give it our best shot. It's pretty obvious to the supporters and certainly us who we should try and retain and who we shouldn't.