We have been living in the past for far too long. Our proud history has made us drunk on delusions of grandeur. The reality is that we are really now a spent force. Manager Paul Lambert is not just the problem here. It goes much deeper than that, and although Marcus Evans five-point plan seemed like a good idea at the time, action always speaks louder than words. Since he made that statement more than four years ago, only some of his objectives have been met. We all need to sober up and fast!
1 . To provide a significant ongoing financial commitment to the club’s academy, enabling a steady flow of players into the first-team. I think we can say that this has been broadly realised. Jack Lankester, Flynn Downes, Luke Woolfenden, Andre Dozzell, Teddy Bishop, Aaron Drinan, Armando Dobra, and Myles Kenlock have all made into first-team football through this route and money has been expended in the process. (9/10)
2. To provide a sustainable and competitive squad salary budget. The fact that nobody wants to leave this club in a hurry suggests that they get paid rather well. Sadly, this is not generally rewarded by their performances on the field. When I look at some of the smaller clubs in this division, I find it hard to believe that we underpay our players. (8/10)
3. To make annual investment funds available to purchase players in the early stages of their career and to assist in their development. I am not sure about this one. All we ever seem to get in these days are loan players. The rather parsimonious nature of our owner, after Messrs Keane and Jewell blew his dosh, suggests that this probably no longer applies. (4/10)
4. Maintaining a stable management and coaching team. This was the reason he gave Paul Lambert and his crew a five-year contract extension to the horror of most of us. (10/10)
5. To develop a team to play attractive and exciting football. Oops, the score has fallen right through the floor on this one. Four years on and we are further away than ever! (1/10)
Our delusions of grandeur have caused a systematic failure on all fronts, and we have drifted agonisingly close to the bottom of the football ocean. Unless someone throws us a life-belt we will sink to the very depths of the football pyramid, with no hope of a revival. It needs much more than Paul Lambert to pack his bags if we have any aspirations of a lasting recovery.