Emley AFC is a club built on solid foundations with chairman Andrew Painten and vice-chairman Marcus Pound at the helm.

Despite the titles, the two jointly run the club, each with separate roles and skill sets.

Pound, 43, who has had two spells as an Emley director, first became a supporter in the 1980s. He is also the groundsman at the Fantastic Media Welfare Ground as he runs his own grounds maintenance business, RMP Groundcare.

As vice-chairman he drives key decisions for the club with Andrew and through his secondary role as the director of football operations, he is involved in management decisions, player performance and bringing much needed revenue into the club.

Emley had a successful season last year, falling just short of a play-off place in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division.

“Promotion is what we are ultimately aiming for,” he said. “We came close last season, and it was fantastic to win the Sheffield and Hallamshire County Cup. However, this year we want to go up and we believe we now have the players in place to succeed with our objective.

“We’ve signed a number of players including strikers Ruben Jerome and James Walshaw on a permanent deal. We had James on loan from Liversedge last season.

“Other key signings during the summer have been Will Norcross, an attacking midfielder from Sherwood, Tom Haigh from Brighouse Town, along with two centre-backs Charlie Barks and Jack Cowgill. Overall, I’m happy with how we’ve been able to strengthen the squad.

“I personally felt last season would have been a year too early for promotion because of additional plans we want to put in place behind the scenes. However, this year I think we are now ready to take that next step.”

Marcus’ journey with Emley started when he was a teenager, helping arrange away day travel for fans to the West Ham game at Upton Park in 1998.

“I’ve been connected to Emley from an early age,” said Pound. “I was born in Wigan, but my parents moved to Emley in 1981. I have then been a supporter at Emley since 1985.

“Emley is my home and I’ve grown a business from the village, RMP Groundcare, which has looked after grounds for football clubs, sports facilities, and schools in West Yorkshire for many years now.

“After leaving Emley the first time I got involved with Hall Green United FC in Wakefield and was with them for many years. I was sad to leave when I re-joined Emley, but it was a no-brainer to come back here because of my connection to the village and my passion for the club.

“Mine and the club’s ambition is to get Emley to step four football. We will need to gain promotion to play at that level. I have operated at that level before and have plenty of contacts to help us get where we want to be, I really do think we are now ready to make that step up.”

When Pound re-joined the board in 2019 he brought a new drive and a new direction.

“The first thing I did was hire Richard Tracey and his staff, I’m not one of these people to go hiring and firing managers. I wanted a long-term appointment and someone who was going to build something, and I knew Richard was the right person.

“He’s loyal, very hard working and is as ambitious as the board in where he wants to take the club. He’s a well-respected figure at this level of football and above and last season was another example of us going in the right direction.

“Richard knows how the club operates and understands our constraints or, rather, the fact we want to run it sustainably. He works with that and looks to get the best out of the squad.

“I can’t see Andrew, Richard or I leaving any time soon, we know what we want to achieve this season and what we need to do to get there. I am fully behind Richard and his staff and all the lads for what could hopefully be a brilliant campaign.”