7
Sep 03

I have been involved

TMFDPost a comment • 342 views

I have been involved with an organisation called Exeter City Supporters’ Trust. It’s a group of fans of our little club set up a few years ago with the aim of representing us to the board of the club, amongst other things, and aspiring to the valid, if rather airy, idea of encouraging ECFC to be a better ‘community club’.

It’s been a difficult time for City, a story which I’ll tell you at length one day (if you ask nicely, and if you’re buying). The Trust has been principally responsible for the survival of the club over the last six months. Last Thursday the Trust took ownership of the Club. It’s ours now and we have to make it work. I’m very proud. The club’s problems aren’t over yet, of course: we’re still ‘3million in debt if the rumours are to be believed. That’s an huge amount of money to us.

So on Thursday evening I’m happily feeling proud and listening to the radio while I’m cooking. Some fellow from Chelsea FC is being interviewed about his club’s amazing spending binge. Leeds United’s spectacular overspend is being invoked. Mister Chief Executive is asked something along the lines of: “What happens if Mr. Abramovitch gets bored and takes his money away? What then?” His reply amounts to “stop being so negative and enjoy these good times while they’re here.” (These are my misquotes.)

The thing is, he’s right. Football in the UK has historically been a collection of fiefdoms and any influence most fans can hope to have is grace-and-favour. Mr. Abramovitch has bought himself a toy and he has no reason to give a tinker’s cuss what the fans think. A fan of Chelsea might as well just enjoy the good times: they can’t do much else. Good luck to them, I hope it’s an exciting ride (actually, I really do, though I have no fondness for Chelsea). I’d recommend them having a Trust in place for the day when the bottom does fall out…

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