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Page last updated at 11:52 GMT, Wednesday, 25 May 2011 12:52 UK

Kettering Town chief Imraan Ladak rules out merger

Imraan Ladak
Ladak hired Marcus Law from Barwell FC in October 2010

Kettering Town chairman Imraan Ladak says a merger will not happen while the club's fans are against it.

Discussions took place between the Poppies and rivals Rushden & Diamonds to secure a future for both clubs.

Ladak told BBC Radio Northampton: "I'm not going to do something that the majority of supporters are against.

"[The priority is] a longer-term lease for the club and when we know how much that's going to cost us, we can work out what the budget is next season."

Ladak added: "It's very difficult for us or Rushden & Diamonds to sustain full-time football in the Blue Square Bet Premier as separate entities - that's a fact.

"But our supporters have said they'd rather struggle [in that division] or get relegated as Kettering than merge with our rivals.

"If it's something that affects the history and everything that the club is based on, that's not a decision that I would make myself. My job is to look at the options and leave it to the supporters to make [that kind of] decision."

Under Football League rules, Kettering Town could not be promoted from the Conference with their current lease at Rockingham Road due to expire in 2013.

"It's something we want to sort out as soon as possible," Ladak added.

"Rent is a large part of the budget, and it's difficult for us to plan for next season when we don't know our expenditure - to attract players and managers - and also for supporters to get excited if we have nothing to play for."

The chairman said he is in discussions with the Supporters Trust, who were named as the club's future custodians in a statement late in 2010.

"We've had a couple of meetings and we've got one this week. But we're not going to hand the club over and just say 'good luck'. It's something [taking place] over a gradual period of time with the football club and the trust working together," he added.

Once we know what the budget is, it's easier for us to decide who the manager will be

Chairman Imraan Ladak

Kettering must also appoint a new manager after Marcus Law left the club for Blue Square Bet Premier side Tamworth.

"It's been a difficult time at the club pretty much since Marcus joined, and certainly in the last couple of months. That created a lot of uncertainty," said Ladak.

"He's a young man with a young family, and stability and security is what he needed.

"There's no doubt that he has had a really difficult time in terms of budget being cut, having to deal with some difficult players and he's got results on less money than previous managers.

"He's done things in the right way, he's made friends, played good football and developed a couple of players as well. It's really difficult to let someone who's done that good a job go.

"Once we know what the budget is, it's easier for us to decide who the manager will be because different managers are willing to work under different conditions."

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see also
Tamworth name Law as new manager
25 May 11 |  Tamworth
Trust want discussions with Ladak
30 Mar 11 |  Kettering
Poppies pursue long-term future
29 Dec 10 |  Kettering
Poppies boss Law admits cuts due
08 Dec 10 |  Kettering

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