Port Vale owner has her say after EFL suspend games until April


Port Vale owner Carol Shanahan says the club will be hit financially by the decision to suspend games, but the welfare of players, staff and fans must come first.

The EFL has suspended matches until at least April 3, affecting Vale’s games at home to Crawley and Bradford, away to Oldham, and at home to Crewe.

Their decision comes in response to coronavirus.

The Vale owner told Five Live: “In the next month, we have more home games and one of those is Crewe which is going to be large attendance. You move that to a Tuesday and it will be less.

“But then balancing that, I wouldn’t want people to be coming in and not be safe. The duty of care to the people in the club, whether they be your employees or your fans, is paramount. It will have a financial implication, it is bound to have.”

As to what should happen to the season, she said: “We need leadership, which is what they have given today. It was very clear in the letter they sent to us all, of what they expect.

Port Vale owner Carol Shanahan (Photo by Pete Norton/Getty Images)

“But the integrity of the competition is really important – I do speak as a club that was in the play-offs and then last week went just outside the play-offs, so I wouldn’t be advocating a cut off now!

“But you couldn’t anyway because the integrity of the competition is the main thing. It is the reason we are all there, so somehow or another we have to re-plan and see the competition through.”

She said suspending games also has implications for the local economy.

She added: “If some space opens up at the end of the season so we can extend it, at least then it is cash flow problem which will then get rectified rather than it disappear altogether.

“Stoke-on-Trent relies on the two football clubs for a lot of its income and it is really important that we can play games.”

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