Stevenage boss decided long ago which players he wants out of the club this summer

Graham Westley

Graham Westley - Credit: Archant

We’re not Manchester United or Chelsea, we’re Stevenage and want players who want to play our way says Graham Westley

Graham Westley says he decided a long time ago which players he wants to keep at the club, and which he wants rid of this summer in a major rebuild.

The Stevenage manager was speaking after his side lost 2-0 to promoted Brentford in their last match of the season, and hinted that recent matches have not been about building for the future but rather getting to the end of a difficult campaign.

“In fairness I’ve probably known most of the season [who I want to keep]. Lads who I think are what Stevenage is all about,” Westley said.

“Stevenage isn’t Manchester United. There’s no point in comparing the way we work to what Manchester United do. There’s no point using the fact that we don’t work like Man Utd as an excuse.

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“Stevenage is a small club that has to operate on tight budgets. We can’t do things the way that Arsenal, Man Utd and Chelsea do things.

“We need people to understand that, but who also want to be professional, not who want to use excuses because we can’t work as the big boys do. It’s very much a question of getting a culture together now.

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“I think there’s obviously a lot of work to be done. This has not been a together squad. It has not been a squad that has worn its heart on its sleeve at the football club.

“[Jon Ashton] said the other night that he doesn’t feel that the squad has given its heart and soul to the football club.

“You’ve got to be prepared to do it for each other and we are where we are because we haven’t done it for each other. Try as I might I haven’t been able to influence it to go in the direction that I wanted to.

“Everybody understands some of the problems that we’ve had and it’s a time where we can just wipe the slate clean and just move onwards.

“Today wasn’t really about encouraging signs for the future. It’s great to see signs like Ryan [Johnson, aged 17] coming through but it’s really a question of doing a proper rebuilding job now.

“There’s one or two that have to be here because they’re contracted but in the main we’ll wipe the slate clean and have people here that we want here. We’ll have people here who want to play for the football club. Have people here who live up to the standards that we hold dear here.”

* For PHOTOS from today’s game, click on the link on the right

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