From Behind the Goal

From Behind the Goal
by Phil Smithyes

Chris Balchin is undoubtedly the main reason why, two and a half seasons ago, me and my son became hooked on Guildford City and why I signed up for my season ticket and joined the committee. His passion, enthusiasm, energy and tireless commitment to this club was infectious and you could not help but want to get behind him. I can honestly say that every fan and committee member at this club was desperate for Chris to be successful and we are left feeling empty by his departure.

However, performances and results in the league had simply not been acceptable and a change was necessary in order for us to try to salvage our season. I know that this decision will have been an incredibly difficult one for Chris, our Chairman, David Knight and, in particular, for Barry who had a fantastic working relationship with Balch. There is no question that the players have been underperforming and they need to take a good look at themselves and the role they played in Chris’s departure.

One main positive is that Chris leaves the club with his head held high and with the respect and support of all the fans. He always had our backing home and away and made sure that win, lose, or draw, the players always applauded the supporters at the end of the game. This is one of the many reasons we sung Chris’s name with such gust and vigour. Chris is a Guildford City fan through and through and hopefully he will join the Sweeney ‘behind the goal’ where he will receive the warm reception he so richly deserves.

Anyone who has spent time with Chris will know that he has the drive and work ethic to be successful and I have absolutely no doubt that he will go on to have a successful career in football management. Football needs characters like Chris and hopefully he will be back in the dugout soon.  

Chris – on behalf of all of the fans at the club I would like to say a huge thank you for what you have done for us over the last four years and for some fantastic memories. We all wish you every future success and happiness.