Class of 92 target taking Salford City to the Premier League
The Class of '92 have set their sights on taking Salford City FC to the Premier League as they head into their first campaign as a professional outfit.
The Northern National League side were denied a third successive promotion with a play-off defeat to Halifax, but have stepped up their preparations for the new season by going full-time, recruiting 12 players and opening their own academy.
Part of the club's move to go professional has involved the shirt sponsorship of Soccer Saturday Super 6, while they also increased the capacity of their stadium from 500 to 2,264 ahead of Saturday's kick-off against Darlington.
When asked how far Salford can go, Paul Scholes replied "Premier League", while co-owner Gary Neville added: "We don't have a ceiling for it (our ambitions). We wouldn't take it over if we didn't think we could go as far as we possibly could. But we accept that there's some huge challenges, there's going to be lots of ups and downs along the way, but that's where we have to aim for.
"The realistic target is achieving promotion to the Football League like within four, five or six years."
Ryan Giggs added: ''It's not arrogance, it's not like we're saying 'we're going to do it' but you have to try. We did it as players and now we're aiming to do it as owners."
The club have recruited aggressively during the summer and Neville explained how improving the spine of the team was key to their approach.
"Apart from one, we've got every single player that was on the list (of summer transfer targets) that was presented to us, which is unbelievable really," he added.
"A couple of them we never thought we would, so I think we're really proud of what we've done so far.
''We focused a lot down the spine. Goalkeeper, centre-backs, central-midfielders and a centre-forward, all who have had experience at higher levels, all who have been through this journey before."
On the transition from a semi-professional outfit to a professional full-time club, Neville said: "They'll obviously have to bed in together and it has been busy but it was always going to be during that transition from going part-time to full-time."
Fellow co-owner Phil Neville spoke of how the business they do this summer is for the future too.
He said: "We're hoping that this set of players can stay together not just for this year, but for the next couple of seasons to try and get to the next division we'll be hoping to go to next season. So we're investing for the future and not just for today."