Knill: Wilder was speaking for Cobblers staff ‘who don’t have a voice’

Assistant manager Alan Knill says Chris Wilder’s extraordinary post-match interview on Saturday night was the Cobblers boss speaking out for those at the club ‘who don’t have a voice’.
Alan Knill and Chris Wilder share a joke during Saturday's 2-1 win at Notts County (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)Alan Knill and Chris Wilder share a joke during Saturday's 2-1 win at Notts County (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Alan Knill and Chris Wilder share a joke during Saturday's 2-1 win at Notts County (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Immediately after the Cobblers’ 2-1 win at Notts County, Wilder made an impassioned plea to chairman David Cardoza to sell the club to Kelvin Thomas as quickly as possible.

Workers at Sixfields, including Wilder, the coaching staff and all the office staff, have not been paid since the end of September due to the off-field issues.

Cardoza has been trying to sell the club since June, and with the club effectively a week away from possible going bust, Wilder decided the time was right at Meadow Lane to vent his own frustration.

And Knill revealed that a dinner last Thursday, where all the staff were taken out by the Sixfields Travel Club, prompted the manager to come out fighting.

“In the morning on Saturday, we discussed what Chris was going to say and it came from the heart didn’t it?,” said Knill.

“It was really passionate, and I think what everybody wants is what is best for the football club.

“Chris felt it was time to say exactly that, and I am led to believe that the reaction has been good, and we are just hopeful now that reaction will develop into something happening, because we have been waiting a long time.

“There is only so much that goodwill gets you, and now we need some action.

“What we discussed before the game was that the people in the office don’t really have a voice, and Chris does and it was important.

“I’ll be honest as well. You go one month without wages and you can get by, you go two months and it becomes really difficult.

“We went to a dinner on Thursday night that was put on by Sixfields Travel, which was excellent, but as good as that is, it shouldn’t happen.

“We are not a charity, we are a football club, and a really good football club too.

“It definitely came to a head after that, and Chris decided it’s time to say something.

“The things you say sometimes get you in trouble, but I think he felt it was important that he spoke for people that couldn’t speak.”

Knill said Wilder’s frustration was exacerbated by the fact that Thomas is ready and waiting to buy the club, finish building the east stand, and invest more money to keep the club on course for promotion to Sky Bet League One.

“We are so appreciative of what the staff do for us, and it’s just not fair, because we know what is on the table,” said Knill, who stepped in at the pre-Crawley press conference as Wilder is ill.

“Chris knows Kelvin well, and we know exactly what the best deal for the football club would be.

“The chairman came out himself and said he will make the choice and that he wants to pick the best deal for the club, and we all believe that Kelvin’s deal is the best.

“I think that is really what sparked it over the weekend.

“After Thursday night when we had the dinner with the staff, you then kind of go ‘this is so wrong’.

“It is especially wrong because there is an alternative, and that’s the problem, that the alternative hasn’t been taken and we are all wondering why that is.

“Everybody agrees that Kelvin’s deal is the best deal for the club, but we’re not there at the moment.”

Chron sources understand the deal with Thomas is set to go through today, with Cardoza ‘promising’ staff at the club the deal will be done on Monday.