Following his first visit to Tannadice in 18 months, Dundee United owner Mark Ogren has promised supporters the club is “going places”.
Covid has prevented American chairman Ogren from crossing the pond to check up on matters at the club in person since February last year.
However, despite a £3m loss for the 2019-20 season and a coronavirus-enforced 20% pay cut for players and staff last term signalling another tough financial result is coming, Ogren has reaffirmed his commitment to the Tangerines.
The Minnesota-based businessman is hopeful of “light at the end of the tunnel”.
‘We can’t use Covid as a crutch’
“Covid has certainly affected us and everyone in Scottish football,” he said, speaking to DUTV.
“We’ve taken a step back financially, like a lot of people have, but I think we’re finally getting beyond that, slowly but we’re getting there.
“Hopefully there’s light at the end of the tunnel.
“We can’t use Covid as a crutch – that’s in the past now and we need to look forward.
“We’re still extremely committed.
“When I’m away people think: ‘Does he really know what’s going on?’
“There’s not a day that goes by that I’m not in communication with people at the club.
“It’s not like being here but I’m very involved.”
Kids give Ogren hope
With academy graduates like Rangers goal hero Jamie Robson impressing in the early season action, Ogren believes it shows their long-term plan of developing their own to sell on for a profit is working.
He continued: “It’s excellent to see a reward from the academy because it does take time.
“I think there’s some concern out there we’ve lost as much money as we have over the time but we’re investing in the club.
“You don’t immediately, necessarily, see the benefits of that but we’re actually seeing it with having those players in the first team.
“That’s a great thing and, ultimately, we want to further develop them and sell them on to bigger and better things.”
United ‘going places’
Ogren also moved to reassure fans the club is on the right path.
He says, although it will take time, United are on the up.
Ogren added: “I’ve reassured our fans that this is a process and we haven’t changed the path.
“We’ve had to take some slight detours because of certain situations that happened, primarily Covid that certainly put us behind financially, but we haven’t changed the plan we came in with.
“We want to be better today than we were yesterday, we want to be better tomorrow than we were today.
“We just have to look for ways to improve and that will come over time. You can’t do it overnight but people can see, we’ve only been here for two-and-a-half years and we’ve made some really nice improvements.
“Our fans are great, they are our club and without their support we’re nothing.
“I want them to know they just need to trust the system, keep the faith and enjoy the journey because we’re going places at Dundee United.”