Mark Cooper has admitted Yeovil Town is “not in a good state” as he seeks to pull them away from the National League relegation places with a six pointer at fellow strugglers York City this weekend.

The Glovers’ boss said the latest takeover saga engulfing the club could give his players “excuses” for a run of form which sees them without a win in four matches, having lost 2-0 at Maidenhead United in the week.

It is now almost two months since club chairman Scott Priestnall announced he had signed an exclusivity agreement with an unnamed party to become a majority shareholder of the club and, since then, plans to build 250 houses around Huish Park have been revealed.

Speaking to BBC Somerset’s Sheridan Robins ahead of the trip to York, the boss was asked how concerned fans should be about his post-match comments in the week that the club would have folded if it had not been for director Stuart Robins and chief executive Martyn Starnes.

He said: “It was probably not my place to say, but somebody had to say it. It’s not in a good state, is it? Everybody knows that but somehow we have to galvanise a siege mentality as players and staff to get enough points to do what we need to do.

When you put it in to context, we have had one poor game. We all understand that and we know we can be better as a group, but obviously there are things happening. We have to make sure we do not give the players excuses and they can have excuses at the minute.

He added: “It is a difficult time because there is a protracted takeover going through and everyone wants what they can get out of it.

Until that is done it is going to be a difficult situation, so what can we do? We have to be inventive, make the best of what we have got and with Stuart – who I wasn’t aware gets a lot of stick – but if Stuart wasn’t here then we would be snookered.

I can say that since I have been here he and Martyn Starnes (the club’s chief executive) have been top draw and without them the club would have been long gone.”

Asked if the situation he inherited when he arrived at the end of October, he said: “Yes. I do not want to use that as an excuse because, in the circumstances, the players and the staff have done remarkably well and we have to keep that going and, knowing the players like I do, I think they will do. They need some help, we need some bodies in to freshen things up…’s a tough gig but I am enjoying it.

“I am like everyone else, you don’t know what is around the corner, do you? I enjoy working with the players and trying to make them better and the way they are with what is going on they just get on with it. They could have a million excuses if they wanted, but they get on with it.
I want to try and stay to help them and get them where they need to be.

Answering speculation on whether he would leave if he was considering walking away due to the situation on and off the pitch at Huish Park, he insisted he had no plans to “jump ship“.

He said: “If you look at my record, I tend to stay where I am wanted quite a while. I stayed at Forest Green for five years which is quite unheard of on the managerial merry-go-round.

I am not one to jump ship. If Manchester United asked me to go and be their manager I’m going tonight (!) but that’s not going to happen, is it?

I want to stay, I want to fight and I want to make sure the club stays in the league because it would be an absolute crime if this club was not at least in the National League.

Speaking after the defeat at Maidenhead, Cooper said he was hoping to bring additional players in before the trip to York and would be speaking to Robins and Starnes.

Asked about progress on this, he added: “We are still trying, there’s lots of things going on in the background that will decide that, but we are trying to beg steal and borrow. So let’s wait and see.

He added that defender Chiori Johnson could return for the match, but that on loan Chesterfield play-maker Jack Clarke and central defender Max Hunt were “nowhere near returning from injury.

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1 year ago

Mark, you’re employed and afraid. Don’t be. Jump and the net will appear. The support and resources you crave, are what wait around the corner.

1 year ago

I believe Mark more than the 15 minutes of stonewalling we had this morning, although I accept Stuart is just Scott Priestnall’s fall guy.
1. We’re in a relegation battle
2. We’re in danger of folding

Those are the facts, like it is not

1 year ago

@Martin Hellier There needs to be an investigation into how our stadium was sold to the council. That is taxpayer’s money and it’s scandalous.