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The Finances and Ownership of Smaller professional Football Clubs.

Ghost of C.F.

Ghost of Christmas Future
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
118
Location
Rochford
Good question. The obvious answer is because ever since since god knows when our expenditure has exceeded our income, often by some distance. In the past this has often been made worse by spending even more money on chasing unrealistic dreams .

I'm afraid I can't answer the question for other clubs. I think it has often been mentioned that most smaller clubs are probably insolvent, so it is partly a football problem and not just a Southend one, although that does not excuse our situation.

The first step towards getting over these types of problems is to accept and acknowledge where we are and what we are., and I have a feeling that will be very difficult.
I am straying a little off topic but a few of those other clubs you mention are either fans owned or charity owned- AFC Wimbledon, Exeter City , Newport County, Chesterfield FC - and I am amazed that they stay solvent . There is no rich owner to bale them out if things go pear shaped . The standards of cost control and energy put into income generation must be exceptionally good . Wimbledon even managed to build their own stadium . I do think that fans look at things in a different way if they see themselves in the ownership role. Of course you will have many more voluntary , unpaid workers ( and in their case happy about it ) when you don't have a private owner.
 

harveyoe

Senior Lives Matter.
Joined
Nov 21, 2017
Messages
499
And now back on topic please.
Typical, just when we had started enjoying ourselves.

Seriously though. the finances of smaller clubs would make for interesting discussion. Rather than just shutting up, could we move the discussion somewhere more relevant? I'm not sure where that would be though.
 

BALDY

Striker
Joined
Oct 23, 2019
Messages
611
Before we go back on topic....AFC Wimbledon sold Kingsmeadow to Chelsea and made Kingstonian homeless so that gave them a stack of cash I bet!
 

brigg blue

Newbie⭐
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
1,165
Before we go back on topic....AFC Wimbledon sold Kingsmeadow to Chelsea and made Kingstonian homeless so that gave them a stack of cash I bet!
And Chesterfield have people investing millions too, fan owned doesn't mean a club is sustainable
 

BALDY

Striker
Joined
Oct 23, 2019
Messages
611
With fan owned clubs how far can they go?
At the end of the day rich men will be needed for them to go to the top.
 

harveyoe

Senior Lives Matter.
Joined
Nov 21, 2017
Messages
499
With fan owned clubs how far can they go?
At the end of the day rich men will be needed for them to go to the top.
How far would they need to go?

Pride and satisfaction can be gained from being part of a club which is well run, operates ethically and is respected for doing the right things, and where club and fans are truly working together.

On the field, fans of course want to see their club doing well, but that doesn't mean having to be at the very top. At any one time, only one team can be top of the table, but that doesn't make the rest of the league failures.
 

harveyoe

Senior Lives Matter.
Joined
Nov 21, 2017
Messages
499
I'm not sure about the idea of fan ownership.I would prefer that ways could be found to generate fan involvement.

In the past, people have looked at the German model of fan ownership. This model is not ownership in a financial sense, but that fans hve to have a majority as far as voting rights are concerned.

It was designed and implemented in a different age, when the local factory owner, and probably largest employer in the area, would also be the major investor in the local football club. A committee of fans would be formed who would hold the majority voting rights. These fans would be employees at the factory, so how many of them would risk their jobs by voting against their employer. The system is open to a few other abuses too.

The main problem with this system is that it discourages major investment. Who would want to invest mega bucks in a football club and then, in theory at least, have no control over their investment?. Having spent a chunk of my early life in Germany, I still have many German football supporting friends and contacts. I can tell you that they are not happy with their system. At the very top levels it means that German clubs find it difficult to attract the sort of investment needed to compete fairly with British, French, Italian, Spanish etc teams. Many of them look at our more chaotic system with envy.
 

RobM

55 years as a supporter!⭐
Joined
Jan 20, 2007
Messages
9,418
Location
Essex of course!
Fan ownership gives a reliable income. At Lewes, owners pay £5 or £10 a month to own one share, nobody can own more that one.
~2,000 owners so that's an income of £10,000 a month pretty much guaranteed.
 

BALDY

Striker
Joined
Oct 23, 2019
Messages
611
AFC Wimbledon are not as close to God as they (and many others) think!

You can now read about the Kingstonian chairman who sold their ground to AFC Wimbledon...............The full article ..........https://www.newsshopper.co.uk/news/6258598.khosla-set-to-sell-ks-ground-to-their-tenants/

This is the opening part of the article:

UNDER FIRE chairman Rajesh Khosla is set to sell Kingstonian's Kingsmeadow ground and assets to AFC Wimbledon for £2.5 million and then leave - after helping to set up a supporters trust to run what is left of the club (writes MIKE SIMMONDS and TONY FLOOD).

Ks manager Kim Harris has launched an astonishing attack on Khosla, accusing him of "raping the club" and "putting a sword through the heart of Kingstonian".

Khosla has struck a deal with AFC Wimbledon for them to switch roles which means that Kingstonian will be tenants instead of landlords.
 

Ghost of C.F.

Ghost of Christmas Future
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
118
Location
Rochford
How far would they need to go?

Pride and satisfaction can be gained from being part of a club which is well run, operates ethically and is respected for doing the right things, and where club and fans are truly working together.

On the field, fans of course want to see their club doing well, but that doesn't mean having to be at the very top. At any one time, only one team can be top of the table, but that doesn't make the rest of the league failures.
I have always been a fan of fans-owned clubs but unfortunately have concluded it would not work that well at our club . This is simply due to the unfortunate events that have unfolded over the last 3 or 4 seasons . Our fanbase is deeply splintered - I think I found about 7 different groups at the last count . There are strong personalities at the top of these groups and they all seem to value their own independence so much . I just can't see a group of fans coming together as a collective , respecting each others views , and being prepared to work together in a cohesive partnership which could bring success to the club.
The community based model is the one I really like and Chesterfield FC are doing so well since the charity arm of the club took control from private owner ,casino operator , Dave Allen in August 2020 . It is absolutely essential that you start with a well researched and robust business plan . Setting a balanced budget is essential and you must stick with it because there is nobody to bail you out if you overspend . So, my vote for our next owner goes to the Southend United Community and Educational Trust . And the chairman is a very decent and honest gentleman who would do the club proud as its chairman.
 

Napster

The Horse with no Name⭐
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
36,501
Location
The wilds of Kent
I have always been a fan of fans-owned clubs but unfortunately have concluded it would not work that well at our club . This is simply due to the unfortunate events that have unfolded over the last 3 or 4 seasons . Our fanbase is deeply splintered - I think I found about 7 different groups at the last count . There are strong personalities at the top of these groups and they all seem to value their own independence /so much . I just can't see a group of fans coming together as a collective , respecting each others views , and being prepared to work together in a cohesive partnership which could bring success to the club.
The community based model is the one I really like and Chesterfield FC are doing so well since the charity arm of the club took control from private owner ,casino operator , Dave Allen in August 2020 . It is absolutely essential that you start with a well researched and robust business plan . Setting a balanced budget is essential and you must stick with it because there is nobody to bail you out if you overspend . So, my vote for our next owner goes to the Southend United Community and Educational Trust . And the chairman is a very decent and honest gentleman who would do the club proud as its chairman.
As long as its not the Senior Trustee Director

 

Ghost of C.F.

Ghost of Christmas Future
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
118
Location
Rochford
As long as its not the Senior Trustee Director

Yes, good spot. That is certainly not what I had in mind . I seem to remember someone told me he had resigned from the board but will have to check that one out . Clearly , we would need to review the make-up of the board and perhaps add a few extra people with the skills and experience we need . There are a lot of great people at the club who would have the necessary vision to take us forward . I think there would be a lot of applications for a role if it became available . Is Stan Collymore in work at the moment, do you know ?
 

basilrobbie

Striker
Joined
Feb 9, 2020
Messages
136
Fan ownership can work. Exeter City are the best example, and have been making a success of it for twenty years now.

It does mean that fans have to pull in largely the same direction and the OP was right to mention the amount of energy and purpose needed. The system in which we all currently are forced to operate makes it far harder. We need reform, and independent regulation, and a right to be at the table, rather than having to fight to be there.
 

kaymac

Coach
Joined
Jan 6, 2009
Messages
2,620
Location
Ashingdon
Erm, not quite. Exeter were having severe financial problems only a few years back and were desperate for investors. The dosh they made from Olly Watkins proved a lifesaver…

Chap at Chestefield converted a very sizeable loan into a donation hence their current strong financial footing
 

Ghost of C.F.

Ghost of Christmas Future
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
118
Location
Rochford
Erm, not quite. Exeter were having severe financial problems only a few years back and were desperate for investors. The dosh they made from Olly Watkins proved a lifesaver…

Chap at Chestefield converted a very sizeable loan into a donation hence their current strong financial footing
There are a lot of generous people around in the football world and some are here in Southend . T
 

BALDY

Striker
Joined
Oct 23, 2019
Messages
611
Without a ground to sell or without a money man a football club for most people can only be a dream.
 

Ghost of C.F.

Ghost of Christmas Future
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
118
Location
Rochford
Without a ground to sell or without a money man a football club for most people can only be a dream.
Lets examine that statement in a bit more detail .
I want to use the late and much admired Sid Broomfield as the example . I wish I was in touch with his spirit . He was just an ordinary bloke with not much money to his name. .However, the thing he did have was the ability to dream and he certainly dreamt in a very big way . Just imagine the situation back then in the early 1950's. He stood in the wide open space that was Roots Hall and said to himself.
''This rubbish dump is the ideal place to build a Football Stadium''
And then him and his mates from the Supporters Club got down to work and after months of sweat and toil they built the stadium we have today . They were fortified in the knowledge that this asset they had created would belong to the club .The night before the
opening match Sid was still hard at work fixing the turnstiles so everything would be just right on the big day.
This story teaches us that (a) Its fine to have a dream and (b) If you work damn hard at it you can turn your dream into reality.
If we had a few more Sids at the club today we would be in a much better place.
 

brigg blue

Newbie⭐
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
1,165
Lets examine that statement in a bit more detail .
I want to use the late and much admired Sid Broomfield as the example . I wish I was in touch with his spirit . He was just an ordinary bloke with not much money to his name. .However, the thing he did have was the ability to dream and he certainly dreamt in a very big way . Just imagine the situation back then in the early 1950's. He stood in the wide open space that was Roots Hall and said to himself.
''This rubbish dump is the ideal place to build a Football Stadium''
And then him and his mates from the Supporters Club got down to work and after months of sweat and toil they built the stadium we have today . They were fortified in the knowledge that this asset they had created would belong to the club .The night before the
opening match Sid was still hard at work fixing the turnstiles so everything would be just right on the big day.
This story teaches us that (a) Its fine to have a dream and (b) If you work damn hard at it you can turn your dream into reality.
If we had a few more Sids at the club today we would be in a much better place.
I don't think we can compare the 1950's and today, the football World has changed so much with the riches on offer so much more. Its the same for property prices hence why people under 40 are struggling to get on the property ladder.

Besides building roots hall wasn't free, some investment was needed even if its small beer by todays standards.

Fan owned football clubs are a great idea but all clubs would need to be fan owned otherwise fan owned clubs will always be at a disadvantage
 
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