NOTHING should ever surprise you as a Darlo fan.

Some things might blindside you for a moment but let’s face it, when you support our club nothing is impossible.

If you’ve supported us long enough, you actually see events repeat themselves. For Reece Styche, read Nick Cusack. While football is an incredibly nuanced business both on and off the field, there is one element of the game which is as binary as it gets – balance the books or go bust.

I’ve been thinking about our finances for a few weeks now. Not because I had any idea that we would need to cut our cloth at this particular point, but because I’ve been watching the fortunes of Tommy Wright’s old side Nuneaton Borough. At the time of writing, they are still going but by the time you read this things might have changed.

Meanwhile, another non-league club, Ebbsfleet United, have made the news for being in a bit of trouble financially. In both instances, it would appear that owners who had pumped money in have turned off the tap. This inevitably happens at clubs that, for one reason or another, are unable to sustain their level of spending under their own steam. Usually the withdrawal of funds is so catastrophic it leads either to the club collapsing or, having adjusted to their new financial circumstances, plunging back through the leagues whence they came.

To one degree, we have gone a long way to protect ourselves from one man deciding he’s had enough and taking his ball home. It’s happened too many times for comfort. However, the price we pay is the sacrifice that has been made allowing Reece Styche to leave in order to plug a hole in the budget.

I can understand the shock and indignation shown by our fans, but despite us knowing far more about the inner workings of our club than at any other point in the club’s history, the sheer realities of running a club at this level of football without having someone underwriting any shortfalls in income must be hellish. A small budget deficit now could easily turn into an insolvency event in no time at all.

A big problem in all of this and something the club will need to address with the fans in the coming days and weeks was the dream sold to us in the summer. Prize money and transfer fees aside, fans invested over £80,000 of their own money having been told it would make a difference. So far, it hasn’t. It hasn’t brought the desired results on the pitch and it hasn’t drawn the crowds off it.

The gamble of placing most of, what I believe, to be our financial eggs in the basket of Reece Styche and Simon Ainge hasn’t paid off and ultimately one had to go. The impact has been even greater in the sense that by investing so much in to two players, our squad is threadbare. The balance of the squad and how the budget was spent is down to Tommy and ultimately at the end of the season he will be judged on how successfully he did it.

Fortunately, off the pitch, we are finally starting to look like a professional club which is pretty much the minimum requirement at this level of the game. We have a paid chief executive and we now have a paid commercial director who will hopefully start to make some inroads in to the revenue streams that have been left behind since 2012.

For too long, the club has been virtually reliant on results on the pitch to drive revenue via turnstile clicks and donations from fans. As such, the club simply couldn’t afford a struggling team and it still can’t hence the departure of Styche. Hopefully if the club can diversify its revenue in the coming months and years, we won’t need to let more players leave simply because the football on display couldn’t attract extra fans through the gate on a regular basis.