Chairman Cardoza says sorry to Cobblers fans for ‘dismal time’ on and off the pitch

SLOW PROGRESS - the east stand at Sixfields is three months behind schedule, but chairman David Cardoza (below) says work on the project will resume shortly
SLOW PROGRESS - the east stand at Sixfields is three months behind schedule, but chairman David Cardoza (below) says work on the project will resume shortly

Chairman David Cardoza has apologised to the Cobblers supporters for what he accepts has been a ‘dismal time’.

The team are 20th in Sky Bet League Two, just two points off the relegation places, after a run of five straight losses.

Cobblers V Mansfield Town. 'David Cardoza. NNL-140319-172912009

Cobblers V Mansfield Town. 'David Cardoza. NNL-140319-172912009

Off the pitch, the latter stages of 2014 have provided a similar tale of woe, with the redevelopment of the east stand at Sixfields having been suspended due to a dispute between the club and the contractors managing the project.

But that dispute has almost been settled and work should restart next week, with a planned completion date of late March.

Still, Cardoza understands things have not been good enough for the club’s fans in recent times.

“I agree that it’s a dismal time and I completely understand where the fans are coming from,” he said. “But we can move away from this quickly.

“If we win a couple of games we will be the best club in the world again.

“But I know it hasn’t been satisfactory for the fans and I apologise for that.

“We had no real control over what was going on, and that is the way these things are usually done, but now we will have more control over the project.”

That control comes from a more ‘hands on’ approach by the club themselves, who will manage the project more closely and therefore be able to inform their supporters better.

The new plans for the east stand include 14 to 16 executive boxes, no seats with restricted views and proposals to increase either the north or the south stands to take the capacity beyond 10,000.

“I’m very hopeful that next week we can announce that work will restart and we can get back on track,” said Cardoza.

“That’s good news because it has been very disruptive for us as a club and very disruptive for the fans.

“It’s not definite yet but I’m very hopeful we can get it back on track next week. These things happen but because we’re a football club and more high-profile, it gets picked up on more.

“There have been one or two issues that have taken an awful lot of time and money to resolve, but we’re there now and it will be great to see the builders back there and for fans to see the stand changing every Saturday.

“Because of the changes we want to make, it’s going to be about a 12-week build from when work restarts, and that will be it finished.”

And he added: “It won’t be a lot more seats because we can’t fit them all in so we’ll be looking at expanding the north or the south stand too.

“The bar will be a bit bigger than it was and there will be more boxes, we’re looking at 14 to 16 boxes, which is more than we scheduled.

“Costs have increased but we can still do what we want to do, and we want to finish off the work in the west stand and get the new seats in as well.”