FSF Survey shows that US style ‘Fan Engagement’ isn’t the answer

Today's FSF fan survey results show that football clubs are still not grasping the need for genuine, properly structured dialogue between fans and their clubs. Clubs have undoubtedly got better at recognising the needs of supporters when it comes to matchday, but they have looked too much to the United States and 'fan engagement', which …

‘Sanitising’ English football: who asked the fans?

'Sanitising' is an word often used to describe, in particular, Premier League football and the commercialisation that we've seen since its creation in 1992. A recent retweet from the Non League Paper featuring an interview with a Liverpool fan on this subject has prompted me to put down my thoughts on it. The actual tweet …

Does dialogue without democracy work in football?

A friend of mine on Twitter asked an interesting question last week. I reproduce it below (I'm assuming he doesn't mind my reproducing it, as it's a good point that helps me to make an important one about the relationship between clubs and supporters): I make a reasonable assumption that what Tom is talking about …

Confused about structured dialogue? Help is at hand…

'Structured Dialogue' is, like 'Fan Engagement', 'Structured Relationships' and 'Structured Engagement', a term that's entered the football vocabulary in the last few years at something of a rapid pace. All of sudden, you hear talk of 'memorandums of understanding' between supporters' trusts, groups and clubs; fans parliaments; 'engagement strategies' and more. But what does this …

The Premier League and ‘Dialogue’: An urgent change of approach is needed

It used to be that you couldn't get the authorities to sit down with the supporters or their representatives to discuss anything, or if they did, it might involve them coming to the annual conference of Supporters Direct or The FSF (now combined into the 'supporters summit'). Sometimes it meant a speech from a less …

Premier League TV deals: To boycott – or not to boycott?

The Premier League, currently looking at the next set of TV contracts, have let it be known that they're considering 11:00 kick-offs as part of an attempt to expand into Asian markets. Given that Charlie Sale reported it, there's a very decent chance it's got substance to it (he's been for many years been one of …

Are Orient fans asking for too much? 

The Leyton Orient Fans Trust has just published a 'Fit and Proper Orient Test', which understandably has caused a lot of response, at least on Twitter, where I've been following the discussions. As a tool to promote the name and aims of the trust itself, it's rather a natty little idea. But let's just dispense …