Neil’s pride and Joy as ambitious Fylde chief

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AFC Fylde may be unbeaten in Vanarama National North this season but one man is determined to make their supporters’ matchday experience even better.

Neil Joy is the club’s new chief executive and is relishing his challenge.

Joy arrives with a wealth of experience in the football industry, having spent the last four years at League One club Oldham, serving as chief executive and secretary.

Fylde return to league action at Kidderminster on Saturday after an 11-day break and are sitting pretty at the top of the table.

Unbeaten in the league and on a four-match winning run, they head to the Harriers with a three-point cushion at the top. One of Joy’s primary objectives is to offer supporters the “best possible matchday experience”.

He said: “At the forefront of every successful football club is a happy fanbase and we want to do everything possible to ensure everyone who visits Mill Farm enjoys themselves.

“We have a duty to all our fans and commercial partners to offer the best experience possible. Of course, we are keen to expand our supporter base. However, it is also vitally important that we look after our existing fans as they are an integral part of the club’s history and its future.

“I am here to play my part in ensuring that the club’s development continues. Dave Challinor and ladies manager Luke Swindlehurst will have my full support and hopefully I can help them to achieve all of the club’s goals on the field.

“The community side of the club is crucial to our development and foundation director Tom Hutton and his staff are doing a fantastic job. His team are central to what we hope to achieve off the field.

“As we continue to expand, our commercial growth is also going to be key. We are developing a brand that people want to be associated with and in return we can offer significant exposure for business people and their companies.

“This is a great opportunity for me personally and a new challenge that I am relishing. The chairman’s vision for the club is certainly one that I buy into and I can’t wait to begin playing my part in fulfilling those plans.

“We are in an entertainment business and we want fans to enjoy coming to watch a successful team in fantastic surroundings.”

The club will be hosting a fans’ forum with the new chief executive this month, with details to be announced shortly.

DANIEL AGNEW