Chairman Andrew Smith’s First Fans Meeting Introduction

Date: 23rd October 2020

SFSA Zoomcast

22 10 20 1pm – 2pm

 

Introduction

 

Welcome to the first of our monthly fan zoomcasts

 

Today our guest is Sir Keir Starmer who needs no political introduction.

 

A lifelong Arsenal supporter and football fan you might not all know the younger Keir also played for the Accies.

 

That is Homerton Academicals rather than Hamilton in the The Sunday PM league.

Sir Keir is joined by Richard Leonard and Angela Rayner also hopes to patch in later.

 

Why all this interest in Scottish Football Fans and how we think?

That’s a fair question from us to Sir Keir and we’ll come back to it I’m sure but let me set the scene a little.

Our game is in turmoil not just here where but further afoot.

Change is certain from the very top where FIFA and UEFA are now agitating over each other’s idea of a European League
As far as we know no Scots clubs are penciled in to the current elite speculations.

Down at the grass roots some of our clubs can exist fine on 200 paying spectators but without fans they are running on empty with home referee bills, 62 seat away bus bills players playing for free and no showers just some of the problems they face.

 

It’s been a strange 7 months.

 

We had a particularly Scottish Pantomimic lockdown of “Lost and changed” Dundee votes, court case relegations, time wasting task forces, broken pyramids, and failed “indicative votes” that sees our SPFL currently trying to run a multi million business without a mandate from its members who as it happens are the same people who actually run it.

Our SFA have paid lip service to change since the 90s and commissioned and ignored three expensive reports.

Two were completed by our own Henry McLeish.

 

One the Thinktank by Ernie Walker (And a cast of experts including Dutch genius Rinus Michels and others) in 1995 is now hidden well covered in the Hampden long grass.

Just 25 years yet the SFA who paid for it can’t even find a copy.

 

We also currently have a Joint Response Group (JRG) which is set up to manage our game during this crisis.

 

It is, we believe, comprised of people from SFA SPFL Scottish government plus others.

Have a look. Google it.  There are no available records in the public domain of who they are and what they do just a few well-crafted press releases when it suits.

Why would fans be told what is happening between their government and their authorities?
Why would us fans be involved?

We asked the Scottish Government for info on all our behalves over 6 weeks ago and we’re now over two weeks past the specified 20 working day response promised.

 

So lots to talk about but before opening up it is important to say the SFSA is independent and always will be.
Some people in our game find that is a threat because we represent a growing consensus for change which football cannot do internally.
We won’t all agree today.
We haven’t scripted anyone on this call.

Scottish Fans will seldom agree about anything because football is essentially tribal and pits us against each other.
That doesn’t mean we can’t work together for the common good.

We’re not all angry all the time either because we support our teams and protesting is hard work but as a community it is fair to say we are Passively Disgruntled

When prodded enough we abhor the secrecy that exists throughout our game and can see it has been used as power to divide and conquer.

 

We almost unanimously agree we want Leadership, Fairness, Consistency and most of all Transparency.

We don’t think these words fit well with football in Scotland today.

 

Scottish fans want our Scottish Champions to play in the Champions League proper against all other champions.

We want the Kieran Tierneys and Ryan Christies of our world to be treated the same on a post covid Saturday.
We want to know why 3750 fans can watch Rangers tonight in Belgium, and 0 Celtic in Scotland.

 

Sir Keir you will hear honest input and answers from the group we have today.

 

We represent many different and diverse clubs but deep down know we are all living in that timeless Dave Allen joke.

 

“Well we wouldn’t be starting from here”.

 


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