Mansfield Town chairman John Radford said he has given his manager a top three budget for the third year in a row.
Speaking at the club’s AGM today, Radford said he had dug deep in his pockets for previous boss Steve Evans and was now doing so for successor David Flitcroft.
“The last three years we’ve had a top three budget, so I expect a top three place, but we’re not there yet,” he said.
“We want to take the club as far as we can take it and see where we go from there.
“We’d like to thank all our fans for coming through the door – the turnstiles are starting to turn a bit more.”
The accounts showed a huge rise in wages and also agents fees, which jumped from £10,324 for the 12 months ending 30th June 2017 to £58,690 for the next six months.
“That’s the market we’re in with the players we are chasing from the next level. It is a battle we will always have with the manager as we try to make it affordable to the club,” said John Radford.
CEO Carolyn Radford added: “If you want to be competitive you have to pay the premium.
“But the higher you go up the divisions the bigger gates you get and more exposure and TV money you get.”
On future plans, John Radford said: “We want to take the club forward and there are a lot of things going on with a lot of projects.
“Obviously the Bishop Street Stand will need sorting at some point.
“Also the hotel is bubbling away. Planning has gone through and I have a meeting about it in the first week in December.
“I am not sure which we will do first – Bishop Street or the hotel.”
Carolyn added: “We’d like to know what fans would prefer first as well. Both of them need doing with a four to five year plan to complete both.
“The ideal would be to do the hotel in the new stand but there just isn’t the footprint to be able to do that.
“We’ve asked the council about the housing behind it but that’s all occupied at the moment so it’s just not practical to do anything there.
“So it will be two separate projects.
“But the training ground is now up and running and will have an official opening soon.
“And we are meeting with the manager on Monday night to discuss any changes that may need to be made in the squad for the second half of the campaign.”
Answering a question from the floor, John Radford confirmed the final payment to complete the purchase of the One Call Stadium from former chairman Keith Haslam would be made in March.