So it wasn't going to happen eh.... well, well, well...
AN OPEN LETTER TO ALL LIVERPOOL SUPPORTERS
Yesterday was a day that will go down in infamy in the history of Liverpool Football Club. Yesterday was the day that the stewardship of our beloved club by two most undesirable proprietors was sealed. Yesterday was the day that Liverpool Football Club lost its soul.
I have stood and sat in the Kop for fifty years, through its greatest, its humblest (some on here may not realise we were in the old second division within the living memory of most Liverpool supporters) and most tragic times. I have witnessed all our major triumphs and all our humbling defeats. But now no more. This, my fellow Reds, is the end of the line for me.
Unlike many of those who resisted the takeover of Manchester United by the Glazer family I am not set against Americans per se owning our club. It is these particular Americans that I am opposed to for obvious reasons (it was educational to hear that former Chairman of Aston Villa, Doug Ellis, was prepared to accept a lower offer for his shares from Randy Lerner rather than allow Gillett gain control of the club). And make no mistake HICKS &GILLETT are in this now for the long haul – no matter how many REDS are left sleeping on bare mattresses!
What we are witnessing now is the birth of a commercial sports franchise the hub of whose operations will just happen to be within the City of Liverpool. It will be about as Scouse as any Merseyside branch of Tesco or Sainsbury. And worse still, as we have already become aware, our new and most unwelcome owners will do this in a way so underhanded that it would make MI6 blush.
But I haven’t ventured on to Liverpool fan websites for the first time in my life simply to deliver an ‘I Quit’ ultimatum. I have come here to say that ANY Liverpool fan that continues to go to matches is propping up the current regime. Boycotting the odd match here or there will not make the individual fan any less of a collaborator. S/he has to be ready to abstain from match attendance for the duration.
Unfortunately, the outlook for this kind of protest, at first sight, is not encouraging. Barely 300 people failed to renew their season tickets at Old Trafford after the Glazers took over. And those who stayed but decided to boycott club merchandise (and hypocritically vandalise the property of Manchester United executives) couldn’t prevent the clubs turnover reaching a record £250m last year (NB the 76% here who stated they would reduce their financial commitment to LFC should H&G remain).
The formation of an opposition football club on the other hand appears slightly more promising. Playing well outside Manchester at Bury’s Gigg Lane ground, FC United of Manchester regularly commands gates in excess of 3,000. More importantly, the dissidents are not only sticking with their new creation – they are growing in number.
There is much we can learn from the experience of Man U fans who opposed the Glazer takeover. I believe that we could make a sustained boycott of Liverpool FC much more effective and that a new club venture could be more successful. I believe this because Liverpool is a more tightly knit community with a more distinct identity with a greater appetite for struggle.
Fellow Reds, we are now at a crossroads. Either we can just talk of contempt for Gillette and Hicks while continuing to aid them in their monstrous scheme by passing through the turnstiles or we can sever our ties with their alien creation and reclaim our heritage by forming a new club: ‘Liverpool 2008 FC.’
I call upon the moderators, administrators and members of this forum, with links to the official and unofficial Liverpool Supporters Clubs and Associations to lobby your committees and officers to convene within a month an open meeting in a local public venue to discuss the topics that I have just raised: namely the launch of a long term boycott of ALL Liverpool FC fixtures and the establishment of a new association football club, ‘Liverpool 2008 FC.’
I hereby authorise all those who sympathise with the opinions expressed herein to reproduce them for a wider audience.