Archive → November, 2010
The Aim Is Quite Simple. Two Weeks Get This To Number One. The Manchester United Supporters Trust are promoting this as they are getting the Profits from the sales but more importantly I am promoting this too. My Reason is it makes a huge political statement and music is always an excellent PR story. Also one of the people in the song is very local to myself, that local and that smaller world I might be asking for a little blog interview. Watch This Space. Video is below, one lad is a Red and the other a Blue both from Manchester, with a tune aimed around Manchester. Buy it here £0.79! GET IT TO NUMBER ONE! I’ll send you a cheque for the £0.79 if hate it or if your pocket is empty. No Excuses. Click Like On Facebook
Buy It Here From Itunes http://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/welcome-to-my-city-ep/id398151056
F.O.A.K - Welcome To My City
You can also follow them on twitter @foak
Today the Glazers will report they’ve paid off the £220m PIK personal debt, people will say ‘good news’ on twitter, facebook and the press will report the same thing but they should be asking something very different. Where has that money come from?
In 2010 The Manchester United Supporters Trust released the One Love football shirt, they sold 5,000 and raised £25,000 pounds for the British Heart Foundation. My Shirt Number is 849. You’ll have heard of this and maybe seen the New Green And Gold Shirt but this time £5 goes to Prostate Cancer Charity. Its sponsored by Sharp and looks the part. In my view, 10 times better than the One Love Shirt. I’ve ordered mine today £19.99 + 3.99 postage. If you have an AON shirt, it was £40 with nothing going to charity, this is a shirt fighting against Glazer and Cancer. Killing two birds with one stone. This is a warning, last time within afew weeks most sizes were totally sold out and I don’t know how many they are making this time. As fans we should aim to raise another £25,000 and make it £50,000 Total to Charity by the end of 2010. A link to the shirt is below along with a facebook link to the shirt. If you’ve already ordered it or plan to, leave please a comment or twitter me. @wewantglazerout
I’ve been watching this space very closely with great interest for the last year or so. In January The Bond was straight forward, Bank Debt Converted in Bonds. Everything went public. Since then apart from the Red Knights, nothing much has happened. Until around the mid October 2010 when rumours started flying around about Rooney wanting leave, this was later confirmed, it all went very strange. Alex Sir had a press conference, Rooney released a statement blaming the owners, Rooney talked to the owners then he signed just like that. No reasons why given. This week a story surrounding £220m debt being paid off by the Glazers on Monday has made big news. Again no reason to say how or why. Today there was very strange little story in an unknown Austrian Paper, I’ll say now this was NOT true but its a warning. There are rumours from the people in the City of London who say you try to move debts, when your ready to sell. When the club is sold, one source will get sniff and it will be on every back page by the morning. It will hit without warning and it could happen at anytime.
A leading news paper called The Telegraph which has sources inside of Manchester United has acquired some information which points to an American company called ‘springfield financial’ http://www.springfieldfinancialco.com/ Apparently they have taken on the Glazers personal debt for a tad lower rate of interest than was on the PIKs. Its not 100% true but its the most likely situation. It would make sense, along with why its been kept so quiet. Good News? err noooo. There is likely still a PIK loan at £240m just at a lower rate of Interest. Love United Hate Glazer.
You’d think after 5 years the Glazers would start to learn. Its not only at Manchester United but in their other assets where they have a strange way of doing things. They’ve only just started to treat their Tampa fans in the way they’ve treated Manchester United and they are starting to suffer big time. TV Blackouts, low attendances, the fans wanting to know what’s going on and do the Glazers say anything or does anyone in the NFL speak out out? No. From winning the Super Bowl and being one of the leagues most valuable clubs they now aren’t even in the top ten of NFL teams. You could say they’ve gone from being Arsenal or Chelsea of the NFL world to being the current Blackburn Rovers. So no wonder their fans are complaining and this mainly comes from lack of investment. Where have we heard that before? They’ve stopped investing in Tampa Bay once it was successful and the did the same thing once Manchester United won the Champions League. You could say Tampa Bay are what Manchester United could become in 3 to 4 seasons time. Being on TV less, less successful on the pitch, less fans buying tickets and less investment in the team. All 4 can be said to be happening at both teams now. That’s very worrying.
The problem I see is how can two very pubic and well known sporting teams be so quiet. The media and the fans want answers and it doesn’t matter what David Gill or anyone else says. If they keep treating the fans and the club like they are, they won’t get anywhere. They don’t talk to the fans and that’s one of their biggest problems. They have no respect for anyone. They aren’t very clever at PR either. They use CES in the ground, then try and keep any Green and Gold off the MUFC website but produce headlines like this “So how did the Glazers raise the money to pay off a £220m loan?” Then get David Gill to come out after every big story. Hes become that crap with his stories the English Media seemed to have totally ignored him. What PR they had left to anyone with a brain has gone. If you think this debt has been paid off and its a done deal, end of story, No more debt. Seriously go and see a head doctor. If they had used their own cash, they would have got it over every back page newspaper for a week.
As we’ve all seen on twitter along with one or two well known business sources the Breaking News is ”United owners to pay off £220 million loan”. This is that famous £138m PIK debt the glazers took out in 2005 to buy Manchester United or should I really say just take control. The bond holders currently own more of the club than they really do, they just don’t get a say and the fans pay the interest repayments. That debt is now worth over £220m and its known it will be paid off by the 22nd November but there are still questions. First and last is. Where has this money come from? This might be answered within an hour of this being posted or maybe never. I know the Glazers through, it always comes out in the end.
Has it come from the club? Well business sources say, No, none of the clubs money will be used to pay it off even through the bond document would allow this to happen. If the source to the business source is David Gill, then yes 100% it did come from the club. He doesn’t really know what’s going on.
Rumour mill has been throwing afew others.
They they taken out debt to pay debt? This is possible. They did this with United bank debt and converted into bonds. This didn’t really do alot. The debt is still there and still has to be paid off sooner or later.
Is a 3rd party involved? This is also possible but I’d say more unlikely than the first. This is interesting. Does the 3rd party get a say on goings on? Do they own part of the club? Who is this 3rd party. Other Yanks? A United fan? One I had put too me was could it be the Red Knights? After the summers goings on I’d find that highly unlikely but its been rumoured debt in the form of the bonds could be used as a possible takeover tool.
Selling the PIK debt to someone who is meant to be on the side of the fans while keeping full control could be an option. For the Glazers it could be a good option and a way out while still increasing the value of the club. Using the clubs money was a no go but selling to a fan friend? To remove some anger and hate? Did we finally bother them that much? With the Government aiming to produce plans, UFEA wanting to introduce certain rules and the increasing protests? Bloomberg reported they were scared to use the clubs cash. Am I getting carried away? Yes, that won’t have happened so don’t even think about it.
Paid Off Or Not. They Still Have To Go.
You can also read more on the Andersed Blog http://andersred.blogspot.com/2010/11/known-unknowns-and-unknown-unknowns.html Follow him on Twitter Here. @Andersed
The Last Blog Post Still Applies apart from it is 6 months! Anyone told to read the first blog post, go down apost, then read this. I mentioned in the last post there was an announcement. Here it is, its quiet hard to believe.
But Read This….
“5.4.iii. Work with football bodies to consider how best to improve football governance, including options to support the co-operative ownership of football clubs by supporters – December 2010 To May 2011.
5.4.iv. Publish proposals for improving governance in sport – May 2011″
This has come directly from the Government. The FA Has Six Months but my other big question from the last blog post still applies.
You can read this information here - http://transparency.number10.gov.uk/transparency/srp/view-srp/34/22
This small piece of news, isn’t on websites, in the news or anywhere else I’ve looked. I don’t believe currently there isn’t alot on this but it is important. I have two radio shows and I’ve been told this was announced today on twitter after asking about it. I’ve mentioned a man called Hugh Robertson once or twice before. Hes the Minster For Sport. I’ve just listened to an interview on Call Collymore on Talksport with an Interview with Hugh Robertson.
This is how it will work out. This is straight from Hugh Robertsons mouth. The Minister For Sport In This Country. For the first six months of his term, he has been heavily involved in the bid of the 2018 world cup bid and after this bid is over, if we’ve won it or not. He will then turn his attention to towards meaningful football governance. He says its not for the government to run football. He knows that younger people coming into the game understand football isn’t just a business but he says football needs to be a business with social pressures upon it. He says time its self could solve this but admits this won’t be enough so the government will need to pressure along with other things to move football along. Then there was some talk on the German Model and how it wouldn’t work because of you guessed it our debt. To expensive to pull it off. He quoted a figure of £1.1b to buy 20% of football shares then sell them back to the fans. Then there was some talk about wages to turn over. I only looked into this because today Stan Collymore said he’d interviewed Hugh the day before along with quoting an interview in the Evening Standard where Hugh he’d give football six months for the FA, Premier League etc to get its house in order.
I found the interview. It doesn’t quote six months but it does say this …
“Under the Tories football will only have a few months to sort its house out.
“The national game needs to deal with four issues,” Robertson says. “The fit and proper person test for club owners; transparency so that people looking at football clubs can see exactly what’s going on; the whole question of debt as a percentage of turnover, and governance. There are far too few people that sit on football boards, either in clubs or the organisations, that act independently. Most are part of the game’s vested interests.
“If, by the end of the summer the Football Association, the Premier League and the Football League have not come up with a proper plan to address these four issues, then the Government will have to step in. One of the options would be an independent regulator to run the game.”
The issue has acquired greater urgency for Robertson following the sudden resignation two weeks ago of Ian Watmore, the FA’s chief executive. Days before that the pair dined at the Commons and Watmore told Robertson that he hoped “to bring something really concrete to the next Government” within a couple of months.”
…. end Quotes from the London Evening Standard.
This isn’t all there is, as I’ve been told something might have been announced but I am currently unsure what but I feel what has been said over the last two days is very important. With the FA Chief resigning quite a while months ago, have those in power forced him out over the ownership issue? Has there been some large pay offs to move him out of the way? Just what is the FA view now he has moved on? The next questions are pointed at the government and Hugh. Just how far will he push this issue? What if Football doesn’t take it up like he wants them too? What if its not fast enough because the Government will have been in power 6 months THIS MONTH. If the FA and EPL do have agenda set out have they given it to the government yet? If not WHY? The Government have an agenda but one by way of asking the FA and EPL to do certain things. If they don’t set out an agenda fast enough. Are the Government just going to give up? Are You Going To Give up Hugh? There was another piece of news last week which I blogged about where a government minister said he was very worried about Manchester Uniteds debt. Its clearly not just on bloke in government who wants something done.
I would give him, the FA and EPL a time frame now. Once the 2018 is done which on the 2nd of next month . I’d give him 6 months for the FA and EPL to sort its self out. That gives it till May to put forward ideas to fix the problem of debt. This is a BIG one, if they don’t sort it out what will the Government then do? Will The Government Then Force Them To Fix It OR Will They Allow Football To Run Its Self Into The Ground? The only question I want answering is the very last one! It is the only question everyone should ask! Put It Too Him! The only way I can think of removing Glazer other than a buy out is via Government Route. We can’t let them just give up if The FA or the EPL doesn’t want to fix it.
Here is his Address…
Hugh Robertson MP
8 Faversham Road
and E-mail Address – firstname.lastname@example.org
Anyone Reading This Blog Has To Send Him Letters, Email And Pressure Him to push this through. You need to also pressure your local MPs.
Here are my three sources. First one…
Talk Sport From Tonight 50 minutes in on the 2000-2100 show http://bit.ly/9Id8cr
Call Collymore From Sunday 50 minutes onwards. http://www.talksport.co.uk/radio/listen-again/episode/13085
Hugh Interview before the election. http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard-sport/interviews/article-23821743-the-big-interview-hugh-robertson.do
This isn’t simply a promotion of a book of any Manchester United fan book, or as it says on the back an ESPN blog of each Manchester United game but Old Trafford, its one fans review of Manchester United on the pitch but more importantly matters off the pitch. If your a match going fan, especially the away games, you will relate to this. You’ll also relate to this if you have a problem with the way the club is being run. If you still go to home games or not, it spells out what is wrong with Old Trafford, what is wrong with the club and why many fans back in 2005 couldn’t give football up but instead did away games only.
Daniel Harris speaks his mind in this book. They’ll be many 10,000s of fans in Pubs around Manchester on match day who will know exactly how he felt in 2005. There will have been many more since then and that group will be growing with each day that passes. That group will have grown during the summer just gone. If they still do away games or go watch a club in Bury, well that’s down to them but to me they all had the same feeling. To try and never step foot inside Old Trafford until the owner goes or something changes. Clearly a number of fans will go every now and then, which is acceptable but for some its more than that. Its that the Old Trafford experience changed from being a ‘the fan’ to the ‘being a customer’ match day experience. Those little plastic seats, stewards telling you what you can and can’t do, the flat atmospheres, those expensive seats which come with a meal in the corners and the expensive prices at the bar. There is even an executive section in the middle of Stretford End. There will still be many fans who still go, sat in many areas of the ground thinking, ‘this is awful and its not getting any better.’ but they can’t give it up. Its your football club, one you might have followed for 20/30/40 or more years. What Harris says is he doesn’t cry at night after giving it up and its lesson to many others out there thinking about. Its your choice. The right choice might not have been made yet. Some fans might call this ‘Anti-United’ without thinking but I could also say the same about funding Glazer and I already know the truth & the facts.
The book its self follows Manchester United game on game. Harris goes to the away games and comments on the home games. I haven’t counted or checked but am guessing its every game. It also goes into more depth about not just what happens on the pitch but everything off it. From the players, to the manager, to the way your treated at many away grounds by normally the ‘West Midlands Police’. Wolves, which isn’t mentioned is a prime example, Birmingham away another which is. I know, I went. Harris also follows the Anti-Glazer protests during the season from the very start to the end. Its strengths and weaknesses, to the facts and how the Glazers are damaging the club. The the fan following and the players United use are also hinted towards the Anti-Glazer argument in some areas. For me its not an argument for or against glazer. Its Harris talking the truth and sometimes the truth is a hard thing to take.
You can find and buy ‘On The Road A Journey Through A Season on Amazon for £6.48. Its not alot to pay to read our whole last season in depth, especially when no funds go towards Glazer. Like it or not, its a very good read. http://amzn.to/cSZEzF you can also follow Daniel Harris On Twitter. @OnTheRoadajtas
The book has also been given a number of independent reviews including Rob Smyth from The Guardian, Richard Kurt a United Author, a review in the fanzine Red News, Alyson Rudd from The Times, Patrick Barclay the Chief Football Correspondent also from The Times, Daniel Taylor from The Guardian and Mick Hume from Red Issue & The Times.