Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Run Your Own Football Club

Following on from yesterday's article on Peter Ridsdale, it is time to look at the exact opposite of one person owning lots of different football clubs. The idea of thousands of people owning one football club is not a new one. In fact, to the best of my knowledge, I still part own a football club. Somewhere in a dusty cardboard box is a certificate showing that I own one share in Newcastle United. Many fans up and down the country own something similar. In practice I am not naive enough to think that the certificate gives me any say in the running of the club. Quite simply - it doesn't!

There are exceptions. I still remember the story of two of my friends attempting to attend a Rangers Football Club annual general meeting many years ago. They were both fans and both wanted into the building. They were also both fond of a drink and so headed straight for a quick pint as soon as they got off the train rather than straight to the meeting. On arriving at the building they were both told that all spaces were taken and that they couldn't come in. For one this meant a wasted journey. The other, however, reached into his coat and produced a certificate which he waved at the security men. In his most businesslike and authoritative voice he pronounced, "I am a shareholder of this football club and I am entitled to a say in how my club is run. I demand you let me in!" And they did. The exception rather than the rule.

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