Clyde FC
Homes Book Factoring Whitemoss Dental Practice

CFC Owners

Sign Up Log In

Norrie Innes Interview

Thu, 6th Apr 2017 6:24pm

Incoming Clyde chairman Norrie Innes has given his first interview to the official website, as he prepares to join and lead the Board of The Bully Wee.

Although he doesn't officially take the chair until May, Norrie has already been involved in club business and took the time to answer some introductory questions this week.

Q: What were the main factors in your decision to take on the role?

NI: "There are good and strong people within and around the Club, but it is also in need of a clearer direction and a base from which to make a positive impact through football and sport within its own community. The Club needs badly a Community!

"I want to bring a contemporary cause and a purpose to the Club. The historic stories of rowing clubs, big match results, relocations and recent stories of having no real home with the associated commercial and footballing dysfunction that that brings, have to be, respectfully, referenced and archived. What we seek is a new real, positive and enchanting story for the Club to occupy hearts and minds.

"We, as a country and a people, have to address the paradox of perpetual poverty and community strengths and opportunities - remove the impediments to real human progress. The Club has direct alignment with my passions for regeneration, development and social engagement. 

"I also want the Club to respond and be part of a reaction to Project Brave. I applaud the good intentions of this elite project, but our 'Project Braver' will be seeking to deliver an alternative and parallel way forward, rooted in the community and not within a secure controlled Academy structure and environment. Youth development through an expansive sporting programme will play an important part of the Club's future. 

"So, we are hopefully at the start of something very exciting and I am very encouraged by the words and offers of support from within Scotland and further afield." 

Q: You are officially taking the chair in May, but you have already been involved in club business formally and informally?

NI: "I am extremely busy with my own business at the moment and I have an obligation to the projects and the people involved in each of them. That's why I can't enter the role until May.

"Circumstances have caused me to be consulted and involved but, to be honest, that was not part of the plan! But that is life and I understand that."

Q: What have been your main first impressions of the club and what do you see as the biggest challenges?

NI: "I can see (again) a paradox of strengths and opportunities but also seriously challenging demands and weaknesses. For example, there has been a complete commercial failure at the club and a breakdown of youth development. This must be addressed immediately. 

"We also have a comparatively strong and capable squad, lacking in confidence and certainly they are out of the habit of winning - the players and management can change this.

"There have also been far too many injuries within a large squad. This equates to non-productive overheads and is not good in terms of team morale, or in terms of cost equating to no added value."

Q: Our current league position is obviously a cause for concern, what has been discussed at Board level in recent days?

NI: "The Board has afforded the opportunity to two aspiring managers. So far, the managerial dynamic of having one man in the dugout and one - top scorer - on the park has not resulted in an accumulation of the desired points.

"There have been positives, but the Board are aware that JP and Peter need a mature mind and voice beside them, advising and supporting them, most critically during games. This is being worked on by the Board at the moment."

Q: The club released a statement following the signing of David Goodwillie, would you like to comment further?

NI: "Courage and conviction is required at times, especially when, in this case, you are seeking to help someone when others want to punish him and restrict his human rights. David is a free man with a financial charge on his head, this arising from the Civil Action against him. He is appealing the Judge's opinion and it will eventually establish a status and end point, but to be clear, Clyde FC will play no part in this. It is down to others to deal with.

"There is no positive purpose or societal gain whatsoever to wish ill on him and allow his talents to stagnate and waste. Football and society would be failing if this was the allowed to happen. If he ultimately has responsibilities to honour through any final binding decision, he should use the skills at his disposal to earn and honour it. Is it not right to create the conditions for him to potentially service society's demands on him?

"I have helped people in need in the past and it can be testing and challenging, especially when they - sometimes - let you and themselves down, but I will not change. If the opportunity arises to do so then we should all embrace this approach.

"I think we have to beware of those who seek to use these matters for political and personal benefit and we should seek what is in us to be authentic and true and make the right decisions, even if it isn't universally or politically popular."

Q: The club's structure and CIC model isn't fully embraced or actively supported by all, what are your views on it?

NI: "It should be embraced fully. Self-interest and egos have polluted many things in life, business, sport, politics and society in general. The CIC structure, if populated with the right, smart and hardworking people, will have a purpose aligned with a greater good of a wider community. This will be part of our new purpose."

Q: Unity amongst the club's supporters has always been very difficult to achieve and particularly of late, do you feel that you can help to address that?

NI: "Simple answer - win games and trophies; enjoy doing it and represent good and strong values; and expect the same from all supporters."

Q: In what ways would you like to engage with supporters initially?

NI: "We should be responsible, accountable and accessible. Supporters should expect us all to stand for something and we can have a real and genuine togetherness. We will only move forward if everyone - supporters included - are authentic, good and strong."

Q: The club's long-term location is key to its future, do you have any opinion on that at the moment?

NI: "A Club of any kind, for it to grow and develop, must be rooted in a community and nourished with a purpose. The East End of Glasgow, in my opinion, provides this."

Q: More broadly, what is your vision for the club?

NI: "For it to be in the Premiership. For it to develop good and strong people and footballers and engage longer term in other sports. This new way will be formed through a set of values and methods that are smart, respectful… and certainly founded on ‘Glasgow Grit'!"