NEW owner Huw Jenkins wants Newport County AFC to become a selling club – and intends to fire up the academy to bring in cash to reinvest.

The Exiles have started a new era after the former Swansea chairman became majority shareholder of the club last week.

Jenkins’ takeover was given the go-ahead by the Supporters Trust in September when he addressed members and gave an outline of his vision for County.

In truth, the perilous financial situation and his track record out west meant he didn’t need to do much convincing ahead of the vote.

Jenkins was a leading figure in the Swans’ rise to the Premier League from the fourth tier, their League Cup triumph and European jaunts, and is a savvy operator.

Now he is in charge of a club that posted losses of £1.2million for the year ending June 2022, reporting liabilities of £393,634, and whose only assets are the players.

The run to the fourth round of the FA Cup and a tie with Manchester United boosted the coffers but such things can’t be relied on.

So, while plenty of County supporters worry about the future of Will Evans and Shane McLoughlin in the final days of the transfer window, Jenkins wants to get to a position where the club develops, brings in the next one and reinvests.

South Wales Argus: HOT: Will Evans scored his 19th goal of the season for County against Manchester UnitedHOT: Will Evans scored his 19th goal of the season for County against Manchester United (Image: Press Association)

“A quick way to turn a football club around is player-trading. We have got to find a way of developing that,” said Jenkins.

“Academy players getting an opportunities and young players coming in from different areas can provide numbers for the first team squad.

“We have got to get to those points and that will start our process of trading players more and getting the word out there that Newport County are developing good young players who can move on to different levels.”

The Exiles have seen a glut of players move on in recent years – Josh Sheehan, Liam Shephard, Dom Telford, Courtney Baker-Richardson, Cameron Norman, Mickey Demetriou, Aaron Lewis and Priestley Farquharson – without the club earning a penny.

Jenkins is keen to stop that by finding the right balance for both County and ambitious player.

South Wales Argus: FREE: Influential Cameron Norman left County last summerFREE: Influential Cameron Norman left County last summer (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

“Being in control of contracts and transfers is critical, but then having the knowledge that if a player doesn’t want to be at Newport County then they don’t have to stay here,” he said.

“We must be confident in our ability to recruit and change things. That will only help with dealing with the process of changing players without the worry of what happens next, because we will be prepared for all eventualities.”

County need better facilities if they are to be a club that profits financially from developing players, and Graham Coughlan’s side currently lead a nomadic life with weather impacting preparations.

They train at Spytty Park, the FAW’s Dragon Park nearby and the University of South Wales’ facility in Treforest, with time slots putting pressure on getting work done. The academy are based at Lliswerry High School.

County’s financial predicament means that owning and running a facility is currently a pipedream and Jenkins will look to work with partners for solutions.

“There needs to be continuity day in, day out for the players to train and work, whether first team or academy,” said Jenkins.

“Knowing where you are training each day is not much to ask for but that has been difficult.”

He continued: “Hopefully the better financial position will provide some stability with the partnerships with Newport City Council, the FAW and the University of South Wales up in Treforest.

“Relationships need to be running in a good way to help our fight to get better training facilities.”

Coughlan has already given a number of young talents a taste of the first team but County are at the start of a long process of turning around their academy fortunes.

South Wales Argus: County owner Huw JenkinsCounty owner Huw Jenkins (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

READ MORE: The plan to change County's academy fortunes around

Not enough prospects have made the grade in recent seasons and Jenkins hopes that his Swansea experiences can help.

“The academy can be very important for a club like us but we need facilities, to look after young players better and encourage them better,” he said.

“Why? Because we can provide a quicker opportunity to the first team, but also we will probably operate a simpler process than other clubs, which can be ridiculously complicated these days with about 20 staff doing one job.

“We will operate a very simple process to allow youngsters to come through and play for us.

“We can’t forget that the club had a difficult couple of years financially and lost a lot of money but were still putting in over £100,000 a year into the academy.

“Hopefully this is where I can help, to me it needed knowledge and direction. Sometimes people do things because they do them whereas we need a bit more thought into different things.

“Hopefully I can provide that with the academy, because I have a lot of experience with that, and we can help it flourish in the area.”

With the ultimate aim of a gem providing a cash windfall to reinvest.