Staveley chairman says some NCEL clubs shelled out more than £100,000 in player wages last season

Staveley Miners Welfare FC (blur/white stripes) v Retford United FC (orange) in the Toolstation Northern Counties East League. Result 3-2
Staveley Miners Welfare FC (blur/white stripes) v Retford United FC (orange) in the Toolstation Northern Counties East League. Result 3-2

Staveley Miners Welfare chairman Terry Damms believes that some NCEL Premier clubs splashed more than £100,000 in player wages in a bid to win the 2014/15 title.

It’s a well known fact that there is a huge gulf between the expenditure of teams at the top and bottom of the division, with some clubs paying nothing more than travel expenses.

But in his ninth season in charge of Staveley, Damms insists his club will not go down the route of the big spenders, because he wants to focus on developing their own talent from the youth set-up.

He said: “The NCEL Premier is now probably one of the best at Step 5 in the country.

“Clubs last season were paying over £100,000 per season in players wages to try and win this league.

“This season there are teams that are paying four and five times the expenses we do here, which is their right and which we do not criticise.

“We don’t expect to compete with clubs on their budgets nor do we expect to gatecrash the top four clubs who have applied for Evo-stik promotion.”

Damms says his manager Brett Marshall is on board with the club’s ethos.

“We and Brett agreed the same players budget as last season, (and) as Brett says it’s not all about money.

“His intelligence of this level of football will set the right balance for our club and he will not deter from his beliefs, nor for that matter our own beliefs which are identical in their make up, in ensuring that we only attract the right sort of player to our club who are not money driven.

“The current first team squad have been assembled with money being secondary, with Brett getting them to the club by setting out our clubs facilities, our ground, minibus, kits but most of all the stability we have here, and not like a number of managers asking “what money are you looking for?” What’s the point of that? That strategy has failed more times than its succeeded at this level.

“Money cannot be the primary motive. This is why our Under 21 development is key, to build loyalty to our club.”

When Damms arrived at Inkersall Road the club had a first team and an Under 19 side, but now boast a junior section with 18 teams, a ladies side and the Under 21s.

For the chairman, an ideal future would see players moving through the age groups before representing the senior side.

But he concedes it will take time, and needs the backing of everyone involved at the club.

We have started the early stages of developing our community club and I believe we are well on track to make it exactly what it is we seek,” he said.

“We have through this year I feel made yet further good progress and off the field there are some great plans for enhanced facilities.

“I have laid out the plans for the next four to five years – seamless transitions for players from the juniors to the Under 21s and into the first team is a high priority but it can’t be done en masse.

“I strive to get a bunch of people, parents, players and managers all buying in to my plan.

“Harmony breeds success and I believe that within the next four to five years this club will move on to even greater heights and success than ever achieved before.”