Hibs chief sends message to fans as he hails 'record-breaking season'
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Hibs chairman Malcolm McPherson has urged Hibs fans to continue their ‘magnificent backing’ of the team next season, as part of a wide-ranging statement to supporters following the end of an ‘extremely challenging’ 2022/23 campaign labelled ‘a transitional one’.
McPherson, who previously served as chairman between 1999 and 2002, and served on the board of directors across two spells, was appointed Non-Executive Chairman in March following the passing of Ron Gordon as a necessary boardroom reshuffle was completed. He vowed to carry on the late owner’s legacy after being nominated by the Gordon family as their ideal successor.
Writing on the club’s official website, McPherson said: “The passing of our Executive Chairman, and my good friend Ron Gordon affected everyone, and he is still much missed. All across the football club, we have embraced his enthusiasm and positive outlook. Ron had a dynamic vision for the club and the board is doing its best to implement that plan to keep faith with his vision. The legacy goes on. The strength, commitment, and passion shown by the Gordon family in these extremely difficult times has been nothing short of remarkable, and that’s motivated everyone at the club.”
Discussing the steps taken to progress the club off the pitch – ‘in keeping with Ron’s vision’ – including improvements to the facilities at HTC and the Easter Road pitch, McPherson continues: “Commercially, it’s been a record-breaking season for the club with continued growth across corporate partnerships, hospitality, and retail. There’s been considerable development across the whole business resulting in the club being nominated for four awards at the Football Business Awards and one at the Stadium, Events and Hospitality awards.”
McPherson predicts a ‘busy summer’ helped by the arrival of Brian McDermott as director of football and there are references to the ‘extremely exciting future’ for the women’s team despite a mixed campaign, faith in new academy chief Gareth Evans to continue Steve Kean's work, and praise for the growth of the club’s Community Foundation.
"In terms of sporting goals and achievements, we have to say that this season has been a transitional one. Securing a place in the UEFA Conference League qualifying rounds is a success and something to build on. It will, no doubt, be a busy summer, and I believe the appointment of Brian McDermott will be able to help us through that,” McPherson adds.
There are no references to the now-withdrawn vote on the Conference League proposal, which had been due to take place at the Scottish FA’s AGM on Tuesday. Former academy director Kean and CEO Ben Kensell both voiced their opposition to B teams while stressing the importance of bridging the gap between youth and first-team football but despite a number of clubs voicing their opposition, including Premiership teams, Hibs weren’t one of them.
McPherson finishes by saying: “We have far reaching ambitions for this club and one thing that’s certain is that this year has proved to everyone how strong the club can be when everyone comes together. I’d like to finish by thanking all Hibs supporters for your amazing backing over the course of the season. You have been magnificent, and we will need that support again next season.”