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Good Turnout for Beyond The Debt Rally

Submitted by on March 1, 2010 – 2:22 pmOne Comment

Not at Gigg Lane on Saturday

Supporters from football clubs throughout England, as well as one from Germany, packed out a meeting hosted by FC United of Manchester on Saturday. Those attending ‘Beyond The Debt’, a rally intended to “put supporter ownership at the centre of the debate” currently underway about the future of the game, heard representatives from the Football Supporters’ Federation (FSF), Supporters Direct (SD), AFC Wimbledon, Portsmouth, Schalke 04 and FC United. Fans of other clubs, including Chester City, who were expelled from the Conference last week and who themselves had suffered at the hands of very questionable business people, were also in the audience.

They heard how both the FSF and SD are working tirelessly to raise the profile of clubs like AFCW and FCUM and bring about positive change to protect supporter interests. Stuart Dykes, originally from Mansfield but now living in Germany and following fan-owned Bundesliga side Schalke 04, spoke about the German propensity to put supporters before the interests of big businesses that, in the main, don’t give a flying fuck about the football clubs from which they siphon hundreds of millions of pounds.

All speakers were well received but the biggest reception was for Barry Dewy, representing those Portsmouth fans that have seen their club raped by several owners in the past few months, which has resulted in administration, a nine point deduction and near-certain relegation. Dewy seemed resigned to watching his football club struggle to survive at all and suggested that a “clean break” was likely. He and Portsmouth-supporting mates would have the support of everyone at FC United and AFCW if that was the necessary course of action.

IMUSA’s Mark Longden was also at the meeting but oddly there was no visible representation from MUST, who you’d have thought would want to be at the “centre of the debate” about supporter ownership, given that’s what they’ve talked about for years now. I’m not sure if FC United invited them or not but they were certainly notable by their silence. Maybe they were busy handing out balloons or scarves to people in AIG-sponsored shirts.

One Comment »

  • midjmo says:

    According to our Elsie, there was someone there from MUST on Saturday. However, after being invited to comment and take part he chose not to speak, which in itself tells its own story. Silence of the lambs?

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