Leiston chairman Andy Crisp hits out at ‘disrespectful’ comments about his club being a ‘big money power’
Leiston chairman Andy Crisp has hit back at recent comments about his team having one of the biggest budgets in the Ryman Premier Division.
Crisp, who has been chairman at the Victory Road club for 16 years, has been left angered at suggestions from Needham Market boss Mark Morsley that Leiston are one of the ‘big-money powers’ in the division.
Leiston beat Needham 5-1 last Monday in a league clash.
“My experience at this level as chairman of Leiston means I know only too well how our budget sits with others in this division,” Crisp said.
“Certainly we don’t have the same budget as the likes of Dulwich Hamlet and Havant & Waterlooville. Indeed, like other Suffolk clubs in this division, we have one of the smaller budgets.
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“I find some of the comments from other people slightly disrespectful to us and they don’t sit very nicely.
“Indeed, our budget is exactly the same as last season, trust me.
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“But last season we wanted Richard Wilkins to cut it down to what it is now and he did a superb job in helping us do that by off-loading three or four of our higher paid players that previous managers had offered what could be considered unnecessary deals.
“Unfortunately, and for whatever reason, Richard couldn’t attract the players he wanted last season and so Glenn (Driver) and Tony (Kinsella) have had that money and have spent wisely.”
The Blues are in a healthy position in Ryman Premier and have games in hand on all the teams above them in the table. They have been praised by many of their opponents for their free-flowing style of football. Crisp puts this down to Driver and Kinsella.
“As well as some very astute pre-season signings Glenn and Tony have brought in a few players from the London area who are non-contract their demands are not as high as some local players,” Crisp said.
“Because of our brand of football they are reasonably easy to attract.
“We also have a strong core of players that have remained loyal and been with us for many seasons – that says a lot about our club.”
Leiston travelled to Burgess Hill on Saturday and a Matt Blake-inspired goalscoring performance (the striker who joined Leiston from Norwich United last season, netted four), saw them thrash the home side 6-0 to keep up their push on promotion from the Ryman Premier.