Truro City boss Lee Hodges has ended speculation about his future by confirming today that he is to stay on as the club's manager.
The former Plymouth Argyle and Torquay Utd star looked at the end of his tether after Saturday's 2-1 home Blue Square Bet South defeat by Sutton Utd. With the club in administration and under a transfer embargo, Hodges was only able to name a squad of 12 and finished the game with just ten players after losing goal scorer Andy Watkins with a hamstring problem, having already used their only sub.
But today Hodges said he he was staying on at the club who were only rescued from liquidation by new backers last week.
And he was full of praise for the three local businessmen - Philip and Justin Masters and Phil Perryman - who are trying to turn the club around.
There was a season's best crowd of 613 on Saturday, the second highest in the league and a lot of work has already been done to make the club a more welcoming place to visit.
Hodges said: "They are doing a brilliant job and the place was buzzing on Saturday. But my job is to try and get a winning team on the pitch and at the moment we are operating under an unfair advantage. It is so frustrating.
"The players could not have given any more on Saturday."
Now Hodges has the unenviable job of getting together a team to play at Farnborough tomorrow night with Watkins (who is wanted by (Bath City) almost certainly out and a seemingly Dorchester-bound Dan Green saying he has to work. Kieffer Moore has still not been in contact with the club.
Meanwhile, City skipper Jake Ash has issued a statement giving the squad's full support for the club's new backers.
He said: "Everyone at the ground would have felt the buzz around the place on Saturday. As many of the regulars no doubt did, we couldn't believe how much work had been put in to making the place a bit tidier.
"I know they won't appreciate me for saying this, but this was due not only to the incredible generosity of people giving their time but also to Messers Masters & Perryman for putting their hands in their pockets, again, to make it a better experience for everyone coming to Treyew Road.
"We have made it very clear to the administrators that we fully support Mr Masters & Mr Perryman's bid to take over the club.
" They have outlined to us their passion, their ideas and their desire to make this club a really positive part of the community.
"They have told us their commitment in trying to keep this squad together and their intent to inherit our contracts and fulfil them and also a desire to remunerate, to some degree, previously unpaid wages.
"But perhaps most importantly, we felt as a group they have the best intentions for this football club, and that they have highlighted 'stability' is key to the future.
"We are sure that, like with all football clubs, there might be some bumps along the road but we feel confident that if Mr Masters & Mr Perryman are allowed to take the club on, that as a collective group – fans, players, staff and with their management – we can overcome them."
"The gentlemen have made no lurid promises to us indeed, they seem very lucid in their vision for the club, and how they intend to take it forward in a very open and honest manner.
"We are sure that, like with all football clubs, there might be some bumps along the road but we feel confident that if Mr Masters & Mr Perryman are allowed to take the club on, that as a collective group – fans, players, staff and with their management – we can overcome them.
"What has also been made clear is that they hope to conclude the deal as quickly as possible, and then it is very much all eyes on the pitch, as opposed to off it. This is only my understanding, but we are led to believe the transfer embargo would be lifted once the CVA is in place.
"Thus, I suspect should the sale complete then the CVA will be the immediate priority and in turn the embargo lifted. I know everyone, none more so than us, were frustrated about the slightly shambolic situation of not being able to bring on a substitute on Saturday and foregoing our man advantage."
Truro have been drawn away to Farnborough in the third round of the FA Trophy on Saturday week, November 10.