Often Partisan

The Apathy Situation

A lot of comment and discussion was provoked online yesterday by Colin Tattum’s excellent comment piece in the Birmingham Mail where he discussed the malaise and apathy surrounding Birmingham City. The crux of the piece talked about the apathy surrounding the club and how it couldn’t continue for much longer if the club was to rise again any time soon.

What piqued my interest was that it wasn’t just the fans who were talking; Tom Ross and Sky correspondent Chris Skudder were both discussing the situation surrounding Blues and more importantly what they felt could be done about the situation. Fans were joining in and discussing protest and boycott ideas with the main theme seeming to be a frustration that more wasn’t being done to end the current situation and that there was a lack of direction and cohesion from Blues fans in taking steps.

I’ve spoken before about protests and boycotts, and about how I don’t feel it’s the right thing to do.I will reiterate that the club at the moment is run as a very, very tight ship and that all the staff here in Birmingham are doing the very best they can for the club. Fans need to understand this and realise that whilst it’s “our club” it’s their livelihoods on the line; if the club goes into admin they’re the ones who are in danger of losing their jobs and of not being able to provide for their families. It’s not their fault that Blues have no cashflow at present and they should not be the ones to suffer.

Furthermore, I’m minded of the way people took to the pitch when we got relegated in 2006 and how they protested about Sullivan, Brady and the Gold Brothers – yet how many people would take them back now? I think there needs to be a consensus of opinion of what fans want to achieve if they’re going to unite and protest; for example, I personally don’t want Blues to be taken over by just anyone – I’d like to see Blues continue to be run as a tight ship but by someone who can inject capital when needed to help the club grow as well, by improving the club infrastructure from the ground level up. I’m not sure others would agree with me as I can see some fans are down to the “anyone would be better” scenario.

I’ve spoken about apathy before and I will repeat what I said on twitter – I’m of the belief that if people wanted to protest then they would have done so already. I know that I’ve had criticism before on some messageboards because I won’t publicly say “let’s protest” but when we get down to brass tacks I’m just one bloke with a website – if people wanted to protest they aren’t going to ask my permission first. I’ve seen protest groups come and go on Facebook and it’s always the same – people say they want to do something and then when they realise the legal responsibilities that come with the whole idea of protest they go very quiet.

The truth is apathy does reign supreme at St Andrews. I get the impression that a lot of people are looking to someone to take the lead, to be the figurehead who organises it all and until this mystical person emerges from the shadows in gleaming armour on a white horse nothing will happen. I will also hasten to add that person is not and will never be me – I have no desire to lead anything.

As much as I think protest is ultimately futile I can easily understand that people have a need to feel that they are doing something; however I would also add to that that liking a page on Facebook, retweeting a tweet on Twitter or commenting on an article on here or on a forum isn’t actually doing that much.

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119 Responses to “The Apathy Situation”

  • mevers says:

    While BCFC is a special part of most of our lives – I’d venture that it’s NOT the MOST important – that’s probably our jobs, families and making ends meet. I think that the apathy is not just about what’s going on at the Blues – but also what’s going on in the world around us. When things are **** at home, football can give you a real boost – a way to switch off and recharge your passion. But right now at Blues it’s just more gloom – more of the same and I think it makes people feel even worse. So I think it’s not that people don’t care – they just don’t have the energy to protest or make this their top priority. It’s sad but I think that’s the truth.

    • almajir says:

      I think you make a very valid point mate.

      • BigmanSteve0 says:

        Al I stated on here a few weeks ago that I didn’t want “just any one” to buy our club & I was shouted down buy you & some of the other people on here (the ones who like to blow smoke up your “ask me no questions”) with comments like we don’t have much choice who buys us & any one is better than who we got @mo etc.etc , I in turn stated that I was not happy with jumping from the pan into the fire.
        Now you state that you don’t want blues to be run just buy any one lets see if those same said smoke blowers come on here &shout you down ….I think not.
        I also said I did not want Sullivan & co back….look what they invested in wet spam in the first year of them going there , it makes me sick to the core to think how they took the p here ……
        Right almajir let put you right on something, you say you are just a bloke with a web site, yes this is correct , but what this “bloke with a web site” as created is a massive group of followers who look to this site for EVERY bit of info regarding the running & in’s & outs of the club we all love, people on this site value all your articles you right & hold your personal thoughts on things like its gospel, every one on here largely respects you & what you say , so why would they not expect you are the man to lead the great uprising against all what is wrong with our club @this chapter in time……
        Remember al the worlds greatest leaders were chosen buy the people !
        Kro sotv DNM

        • almajir says:

          Did I? I have always been quite insistent that I didn’t want a frying pan into the fire situation.

          Also… I’m sorry if this offends or displeases but I’m not a leader and I don’t want to be and no amount of people asking otherwise will change my mind.

        • Pete says:

          Sure this reminds me of the story of that Jesus bloke. Way to go Dan!

        • John says:

          The problem is, that Blues fans come on sites like this,generally have a whinge about the situation,regarding the running of the club The apathy then grows,because this as far as the complaints go. We all sit around,wringing our hands but doing nothing. Unfortunately,non of this gets back Yeung,he knows fans are not happy because of relegation. What he dosen’t know, is the hatred the fans feel,because of the way,he and his cronies in Hong Kong,have brought our club to its knees. I still believe that we should all,pick one home game to boycot and peacefully protestt. The club would not lose that much money,because the major part of the gates we are getting now,are populated by season ticket holders. Of which i am one. An empty ground,apart from some away fans,would certainly get the attention of the national media,which in turn would get back to Hong Kong..

    • Andy W says:

      I agree Mevers. I go to St Andrews because it is an important part of my life. I meet family and friends who I would otherwise not see for months. We share a beer or two. We go to the game. We experience something together, whether good or bad, and we share all the frustrations of the people sitting next to us. We leave the ground in either despair or rapture, and share another beer or two. But in the end we have spent quality time with people we care about. I would still go even if it were just me and my bro sitting in the kop on our own. I have invested too much in the club both financially and emotionally over the years to just let it drift out of my life. Others would call me sad or even stupid. They would be well entitled to that opinion I guess. But it’s my choice and I am fortunate enough to be able to make that choice. That doesn’t mean I’m not frustrated and a little apathetic towards our plight. I do care. Deeply. But ask me if I believe that boycotting games or holding up a flag or scarf would make any difference to the people that are charged with running the club, I would have to say “No”. As Mevers suggests, I am “tired and weary”. But I know that I, my family and friends will “journey on”. Because at the end of the day, where else would we go?

  • Agent McLeish says:

    Hear hear. Nothing winds me up more than people making comments such as “we need to protest” but have no intention to do anything. In my opinion put up or shut up as it’s getting boring. I also see comments of people asking the Trust to organise a protest – do people understand what a Trust is? It is certainly not there as a protest organisation but to build a bridge between the club and fans.
    I also get concerned over the unconditional love people seem to have for the Paladini consortium bid. I mean who are the people behind that bid and why is this being hidden? We need to ask the kind of questions that were not asked when CY took over as we were all caught up in the fact that a golden knight like CY brought the club from those terrible business men DS & Golds (that is sarcasm by the way). Rant over now.

  • Art Watson says:

    Another good article.

    I read all the valid reasons for not protesting and boycotting the games -so what should the fans do then?

  • Dan says:

    I agree with Mevers – the situation though is born out of the frustration that we all know it doesn’t matter what we do – the current regime couldn’t care less. We, as a set of supporters, are just banging our heads against the wall because there is no communication coming from the supposed top people within the club. Anything that does leak through to us is vague at best. With nobody physically at the club for the fans to vent their frustration at (when was the last time PP appeared) there just seems no point in being angry anymore.
    Add to that the division amongst the fan base, where the only middle ground is apathy & you have the current situation we find ourselves in.
    But I think it’s not just apathy at The Blues – people everywhere are falling out of love with football in general.
    Most families are struggling to pay their bills & provide for their children, yet the average footballer earns more in a week than the average working man earns in a year – the top players earn more than the average fan will in 10 years. Unless this is dealt with by our gutless F.A.the game is in danger of dying a death.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Good sensible post.

    • Bluenosesol says:

      Dan, I have made the same points on many occasions. I have been a Bluenose since I was 8 nearly 50 years ago. My daughter is expecting our 5th grandchild next week. I am at the stage in life where my soluble income isnt just spent on my own simple pleasures, I have lots of other growing family considerations. At times like this, I continue to buy my Season Ticket, but I also tend towards socialism and absolutely detest the greed of the modern day footballer and I too blame these spoilt brats for ruining the game. I always sit in the camp of support the Blues to your last breath, but as time and money become more precious in terms of what I can do with them and who I should coomit them to, then the longer the present mind numbing situation continues at the Blues, the more my patience is beginning to wear thin and the proposition of sinking my grandkids pocket money into the pockets of these spoilt brats for ever and a day is sickening me.

      • Ali Duncan says:

        Totally agree. Football is ill and I fell out of love with it years ago. It hasn’t stopped me going as it’s in my DNA and watching live football is something I “just do”. Fans are dislocated from the players and in our case the whole club too. As long as I can afford it I’ll continue to go but I fully understand why people prioritise and wish to spend their money elsewhere. Sky, its money and arguably the Premiership in general has ruined football and it’s just not the same game with the same culture anymore.

  • gerard says:

    whilst I appreciate your comments, the question is who do you protest against, Carson Yeung ( under house arrest) Pannu-the invisible man- if there were transparent- reachable- then I assure you there would have been protests by now. Furthermore the people that own the club besides Yeung are whom? no one knows ? so Pannu and co-by playing mind games with all and sundry -whilst asset stripping the club etc, and watching its demise do not and will never give a dam- I will never believe a word that comes out of Pannus mouth about the club again-remember in the beginning they said -we will be transparent-in it together a big family-David Cameron eat your heart out, as a fan of 57 years , who has given my heart and soul to the club, I am on the stay away list from now, will not put money into the pockets of Pannu etc, may as well throw it down the drain, for me you are an excellent journalist first, no doubt , a bluenose second, it is easy to play the middle game and be friends with all ,but in business as football is you choose your side, and reveal yourself.The staff at club o the ground every day ( non playing ) have and our doing a great job, I feel for them and there futures. As I understand there is £9 million due as last parachute payment in January-so perhaps administration is not imminent just delayed, whilst Yeung and co await the next F.A, handout-coincidence that Yeungs verdict will be late Jan-early Feb 2014, last parachute payment in Jan 2014, and according to Pannu-the financial restricting etc, will be approved by the BIHL board ( for whom ) ? in Jan 2014, who will get what from the parachute payments, salaries and chairmans expenses come to mind first, club second, I am no genuius but can read a balance sheet and understand basic business economics, as I am sure you do- after January 2014? what next? as you are always ahead of the game -perhaps you will not need your crystal ball to tell us?i wait with bated breath. Currently there is no income yet coming in on a day to day basis-yet Zigic (nothing personal ) is on £240k plus a month? something smells rotten or is rotten in the state of Denmark ( in this case Birmingham City ) please can you tell me? .I have respect and indeed gratitude for you and the effort you put it under different names to this and other blogs etc, I really look forward to reading your comments most days, but do not always have to believe or agree with you.

    • almajir says:

      Mate – you’ve got your parachute payment figures wrong…

      • tmsblues says:

        I think the parachute in Jan (if its not already been ‘sold’) just about pays Ziggy, Mulins, Ambrose and Loevenkrands for the remainder of the season. What a great contribution they are making to our survival !

  • bluearmyfaction says:

    I think there are some other factors involved which point to the malaise as to football as a whole.

    Firstly, there is no sign that any protest will do any good. Embarrassment is not going to force a change, a la Brighton. Finding someone to buy Blues is not going to force a change, after all there is at least one in the wings and whatever changes are happening are behind the curtain. Even boycotting won’t force a change, the parachute money is more than fans through the turnstiles.

    Secondly, what would happen if someone waved a magic wand and Blues ended up with new owners who could stabilize things? The best we could hope for would be yoyo seasons for the foreseeable future, which is what we’ve had ever since, well, 1892. The only thing is that before the Abramoviches turned up there was at least the hope that we could, even if temporarily, break through, like Forest, Everton, Ipswich, Derby and others managed – heck, even QPR, Albion, West Ham and Palace have had top fives in living memory. Now that the billionaires have turned over, that hope is gone.

    Thirdly, most Blues thought they would never see us win anything. And we have. Given what has happened since, that looks like the actual end of the road. A coda on which to finish. The journey is better than the destination. Having had the unrepeatable high, can people be bothered to fight again?

    Fourthly, the one thing that might do some good is some sort of media attention. I’ve tried with the qualities but they’re not interested. Too parochial, too working class, too remote from London. It’s not the Premier League therefore it does not exist.

    And fifthy, I don’t think it’s coincidental that Blues’ crowds fell off when Longbridge collapsed. Unlike those up the road we do not have a decent segment of wealthy support (they have the Prime Minister and future King; we have the Carrott). People couldn’t afford to come, they can’t afford to protest. As it is, the empty seats are a strong visual, but of course point 1 applies.

    Fact is football has been taken from the common man. The link between support and the pitch is gone. We were being gazumped for players by teams whose crowds are half ours. I heard that Matt Green took a pay CUT to leave Mansfield for Blues. These are all clubs with fewer resources than Blues, but when a rich benefactor can put in more money than 30 seasons’ worth of full houses, there is, literally, no chance.

  • Mike says:

    I think Often Partisan should co-ordinate a team of influencers
    Juila Sheldon, Colin Tatum .etc
    people who can influence and make a difference….

    As supporters all we can do is fill the ground and get behind the team/club come what may. that would kick start everything …any ideas ?

  • Chris W says:

    I am not sure it is apathy, in the main, yes we want to protest, but who to or at, the owners are 6000 miles away. The only people it would affect are those who are working hard to keep the club running.
    I think most Blues supporters realise this and are at a loss as to how we can have an impact.
    Like you Al, I agree, any boycott will never happen, same as staying away is not having an affect on the owners but the players, as the atmosphere at St Ans is nowhere near intimidating as it use to be, sometimes bordering on the eerie it is so quiet.
    KRO+DNM

  • mark says:

    Equally agree Daniel that protesting and boycotting the games is futile………….if you love the club no matter what the uncertainty are down there, its down to choice in some circumstances that you go…………….. if life fortunes have changed for others due job loss, family commitments, no money, holidays, next meal, bills,children then it cannot come down to purely to apathy ……… Clark working his bollox off, again players need to be stars, they need to connect with the fans and start getting the right results ….and consistent with their performances …….yes i agree we lost three quality young players….. it was fabulous to see Mitch have fun at Derby with the fans…………. the.stock of young players coming through………five out on loan…..imo i am not so downhearted…………………..

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Totally agree about the young players mark. Our future with them coming through looks bright. I think a team including the likes of Townsend, Hancox, Bell, Packwood, Brown, Gray, Hales etc would be brilliant. But that still depends on the present lot not selling them before we get new owners.

  • blewnozejohn says:

    the divided opinion on boycotting/protesting between the fans is creating an “ill feeling”. I believe that this is even more destructive because we are not united in how we can try and change the situation. No proper minded fan would want any employee of BCFC to lose their job. We know the team at STANS are working brilliantly under almost impossible working conditions and circumstances. When and if, the dust settles, their contribution should be recognised properly. My opinion is that boycotting will only make the situation worse. The purchase of Caddis and the loan of Dudka, suggests a small pool of contingency funds, so the starvation of income would take longer to affect the club than people think. For me, it is not only the financial damage to the club that concerns me, it is the growing negative culture growing amongst the fans. Yes we can and some may say, should, feel sorry for our selves because of what has happened. But more than ever in my lifetime of supporting BCFC, we must not give up on our club.

  • phil says:

    what rubbish… real change comes from protest, no change comes from apathy
    do you think high up staff gives a stuff about if i lost my job , no …you have only 13,000 average thesedays , can ppl afford to go to st.andrews, no wages standstill whilst everything else inflates…. Protest and dont give ure hard earned wages ti the filth running bcfc

  • Kazakblue says:

    From Bankes Road in Small Heath where at times you could hear the roar from St Andrews when a goal was scored by the Blues, to travelling and working around the world several times over the last 40 years, from my first visit to St Andrews, paid 9d as a boy, adults 1s 6p, I have supported the Blues throughout, I may not have been able to get to every home and away game in many years, but my family have had a very good relationship with the Blues. My son was stadium manager, through the Gold/Sullivan/Brady era, my daughter in law worked for Karen and Paul and was nanny to their kids, I myself trained at the Blues under Colin Green and others when selected for Birmingham Boys.
    What is happening now at the Blues is pathetic and downright criminal, but apathy and so called muted protests will have no effect at all, I would agree with Mike, that all the supporters start to fill St Andrews and get behind the team, I will be back in the UK in December, and I for one will still be travelling the road to St Andrews.
    Influencers are needed urgently, but the greatest influence on the players, no matter what ever you think of their ability or pedigree will come from the home supporters, get behind them, Blues fans have always loved triers, do not have to be the most skillful, but when they pull on that shirt they must be seen to be running their hearts out.
    Without OP I for one would be bereft of news, and yes, I would welcome the likes of Dan to have a voice with any new consortium, leader or not as he wishes, he is the voice to ex-pat supporters in 109 countries.
    Forgive my ramblings, but KRO.

  • TBone says:

    I think some of the apathy stems from the fact that maybe people assume that even if we do go into admin then someone will end up buying us one way or another.
    In terms of finance I suspect we’re not that much different to 90+% of all other clubs. The legal situation with Yeung has obviously raised public awareness of our plight. Even Paladini stated that the club wasn’t in danger of administration.
    Just a couple of examples but Blackburn are reportedly £50m+ in debt, Lerner is/was (certainly last season) personally pumping £2m a month in to the Vile just to keep them ticking over.
    We may get relegated we may not, that’s how football works.

  • roger says:

    I cant be bothered

  • KeeprightCroydON says:

    As The Mighty Wah once foretold

    “First they take your pride,
    then turn it all inside,
    and then you realise you got nothing left to lose.
    So you try to stop,
    try to get back up,
    and then you realise you’re telling the Story of the Blues.”

    • DoctorD says:

      You missed the next 2 lines:

      Felling browbeaten day after day,
      I think It’s over but I just can’t get away.

  • dave mann says:

    great piece dan……enough said.KRO.

  • Mike says:

    How about of the club give season ticket holders unlimited free tickets for December as a reward and thanks for their support. I appreciate policing and stewarding costs may increase but by asking those that care about the club most to bring family and friends back to get behind the team and reverse the apathy may help

    All the bloggers like Often Partisan and also supportive press like Colin Tatum could empahsise the positives of this whilst reserving the right to offer their opinion etc ( you know how touchy these journos get lol :-))

    Lee Clark would be wise to pick reilly hancox and other blues supporters amongst the players – but that of course again is up to him

    Who knows what could happen with a rocking St Andrews behind the team….We pay even come from behind 3 times with 10 men and almost score the winner in injury time of extra time or come from 3-1 behind with 45 mins to go and win in extra time ( west ham)….and more importantly reverse the apathy

  • Mac says:

    I for one as a season ticket holder think that a boycot of matches would be futile and at the moment think our lads need all the support that they can get.
    However a mass turn out at St Andrews for the ladies Champions league fixture may raise a few eyebrows especially if the turnout was significant.
    Also what an achievemnt for them. Blues in Europe! Come on lets get down there next week.

  • Jaffa says:

    Al,you are the chosen one.you just don’t know it yet.

  • Oldbluenose says:

    Once again,!!. Your article touches all the right spots, !!.

    What everyone fails to want to reckonise is that Carson Yueng, STILL pulls all the strings, No one knows what he really wants to do, We all seem to be coming to the conclusion that he is playing the waiting game, [ He has no real choice ].

    Protests will have NO effects, C,Y. is 6000 miles away, and too wrapped up in his own problems at the moment to care about the feelings of we supporters,

    P,P. is god knows where,?. and one doubts that he has as much influance as he once had, !!.

    Sadly, We can only ” hunker down ” and try and weather this storm, AND give thanks for the loyal backroom staff who carry us through on a day-to-day basis,

  • Evesham blue says:

    The club has 50/50 chance of heading to league one next season if the current regime stays in place for the remainder. Of course apathy reigns as there is no hope of it getting better anytime soon. Added to that this trial thing just drags on and on. Whilst I have every sympathy for LC I just don’t think he cuts the mustard or has the talent to keep us up. If keep losing at home there is only one way to go!

  • SouthernBlue says:

    The only place to stage any protest would be inside the ground, pack the stadium and get as many people to bring along banners, scarves, t-shirts etc. etc. with details of the protest and make sure as much media attention is bought as possible, then – perhaps stage a sit in after the game?

    That way we get a little atmosphere back at the blues, staff don’t lose their jobs through a boycott and subsequent administration and we create the attention required.

    All of this is mute of course until people are able to come together and put wheels in motion. it’s all a very sad state of affairs and completely understand peoples apathy. KRO DNM

  • Aussieblue says:

    Nothing, absolutely nothing that we fans of BCFC can do will make the slightest difference to the eventual outcome. It is out of our hands. We can just support and relive our memories but protests are futile; the die has been cast far away in The East. Let’s just be good fans and KRO and respect the heritage of our club, live in hope and be prepared for more rough weather.

    • John says:

      A certain Mrs. Emaline Pankhurst, was told repeatedly, that protest was futile. I would imagine most women, are grateful that she never listened.

      • Aussieblue says:

        John,
        She and he supporters protested against social inequality – totally different story. This is a commercial dispute into:
        a) who has the right to own the club and
        b) who has the money to own the club
        c) who has both the right and the money to own the club
        There is one thing you could do old chum…got a spare 30 million? You could buy a lot of protest for that.

  • Streetly Blue says:

    When talking about owners and being picky – lets face it – people will still probably end up complaining in 2 to 3 years about something they do or do not do. Even Abramovich at Chelsea has had negativity from the fans. I am in agreement with Dan as to the type of owners i would prefer, and i am sure many on here would agree – but i’d give it 3 years maximum before people were complaining again as to why the owners weren’t putitng millions into the club, no matter how stable the club was.

  • dave mann says:

    last season our away record kept us up and our home form nearly put us down, this season
    there both poor so theres only one way were going if things dont improve massively, the
    young players are for the future and it looks good when new owners come in, but weve
    got to think of the present and clarks got to get is arse into gear and start picking up points
    otherwise its doom and gloom for all of us, and we wont even get the chance to play the
    dingles or coventry cuz the dingles will come up automaticly and coventry look like they
    may make the playoffs even with 10 points deducted, and not forgetting walsall to, they
    might have a chance also……..no darbies, league one football……frightening.KRO.

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    I certainly don’t want ‘any’ owner. We need to owner to act responsibly and in a professional manner. In my opinion GP does not meet this requirement. Another SGG like regime but with a bit more ambition

  • mark says:

    Still wouldn’t take sully back because him and his cronies quite clearly sold us out for money!!!

    They knew exactly what Carson was like!!

    Billionaire they said

    Done our homework they said

    • Blooflame says:

      Yes Mark, but they sold out because of the disgraceful attack and protest to the board by blues fans following the relegation under Bruce. I think I’d have done the same mate.

  • Sir Harry 1875 says:

    People have fell out of love with the Club, and thats been going on for some years. Our last season in Prem, we had no sell outs. We could’nt even fill the ground against the Baggies 6 day after we won a major trophy!
    I personally know a lot of people who were season ticket holders but who stopped going after the first, second or third relegation and apart from major games will never go again. Some call it apathy I call it sh*t support. Our support is shrinking and Villa’s is growing. Thats the harsh reality of spending 16 years in the wilderness when the world saw the Prem and fell in love with English football.

    We lost a whole generation of support in those 16 years!

  • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:

    It really is a true shame and blot on our fanbase that we have not been able to coherently put something together under the one umbrella. At this stage it probably won’t make much difference. Banners, adverts, no-shows and the like will have as much impression with our distant owners as everything else has to date – zilch.

    The most effective way to get their attention is with the one thing that will get their attention; Money, Dineros, Shekels – call it what you will.

    Forget “building bridges”, “creating mutual understandings” and the like, CY, PP and BIHL only understand and respect the colour of money – the same as everyone in similar positions. Any organisation or group that wants to wrest some or all control needs to exploit their weakness, they’re hopelessly skint and desperate for funding. Nobody realistically will work their arse off for their ‘love’ of the club, we need to get reasonable and practical on this front. Let’s step things up and organise on professional terms. We need to get a proper list of aims and objectives. Other than wanting the current regime out, what else should we endeavour for?

    We need to get serious people with a certain level of wealth interested. They should be seen as guardians rather than benefactors. A modus operandi that works and is sustainable. We will probably never have a better chance to get part of the club’s ownership into the hands of genuine fans better than at present. To start with, if we could have a simple study done (by peeps paid on a professional contract) to see what we needed to get a certain amount of the club out of the hands of the current owners, enough for us to have a ‘voice’. Then we should aim for that and work towards it. Even with the fundraising which would sooner or later need a fair amount in order to raise revenue, if carefully done, need not to worry any interested parties too much – it could be done via loans to the club at sustainable rates and would not impact adversely if we did not have any ‘high maintenance’ players or directors. We all concur that the club is running along solid and efficient lines and to a certain extent is self-sufficient and cashflow being maintained is a central point. This is delicate but not impossible. A business plan with realistic and doable targets will attract funding from the right sources.

    If as fans we can see that most of our money is going into the club and staying there, surely that is a positive sign?
    It might mean reining in our expectations and hopes, but I for one would be agreeable if it meant safeguarding the future of BCFC for one and all. Some amongst us that are better-off than others, might even come over all altruistic and philanthropic and consider loaning cash with a zero percent interest rate as long as a viable plan was there for the benefit of our club.

    No easy answers but rather than focusing on what is wrong and taking/giving digs, let’s look at possible solutions and not shoot down those that are trying to do something positive.

  • Texas Pete says:

    In all this discussion there is no suggestion of what else to do. So all the propsals are no protest and be choosy over new owners. I say if no one hears the squeeky wheel it ain’t gonna get oiled. You must protest with inventiveness that supports the team but blasts the owners. You must declare overtly that you are passionate and that you and thousands of others care. Wear the scarves, have candlelit vigils, ask the church to pray, and lobby the UN.There must be protest.

  • AF says:

    OP could you replace the word apathy with disenchantment? I don’t believe there is apathy to the club’s plight, I think crowds would increase with new owners, some funding,vision and belief/hope. However there is nobody to protest to, the owners do not communicate or listen to the fans and nobody has any idea what to do except the pull of Saturdays at St Andrews has become less and less. Perhaps disenfranchised also might be apt?

    • almajir says:

      I would agree with you to a degree but the reason I say apathy is because no one cares enough to do anything about anything… and that my friend is apathy.

  • dave nann says:

    Sir Harry 1875, your bang on that some supporters have fallen out of love with the club,
    my older brother being one, no stability, no loyalty, but that would never happen to me and
    my family, west brom a week later.. couldnt sell out, st. andrews open for carling cup party
    and parade of trophy…. not many turned up……my son is 22 and as seen blues win a major
    trophy, 17 years since vile won a trophy so no teenage vile fan as seen or can remember
    them winning anything so how the hell can there support increase and ours diminish ?
    …….premiership football……it the nail on the head…. thats all glory hunting fans think about
    and not the love of the club itself…..makes me sick!!!! KRO.

  • Tony says:

    All this talk of apathy and the owners, look at the tables we are 20th thats not down to the owners its the management. Tatts himself alluded to this in his article, when he also said we were not a bad team I have said all along this side is good enough for a half way finish, the fact that we are where we are is Clarks doing together with the gofer.It is they who pick the side, decide tactics and formations(and what a mess that has been )
    At the start of the season I said Clark had the safest job in England and I was right, he has no one to answer to no chairman to call him into the office on Monday morning no one to hold him to account.

  • kneesup mother brown says:

    I’ve just read that piece by Colin Tattum and thought to myself “…..and?…..tell us something we don’t know…..everything he says is correct , but what is his point ? “…We are all ‘down in the mouth ‘ because , naturallly , we are fed up of bieng picked up and then dropped . I’ve been going down St Andrews since my dad indoctrinated me in the mid seventies and in all that time we haven’t had much to shout about . I’m just about as p@##ed off as anybody else is . I along with my son am a season ticket holder and go down every home game with blind optimism and enjoy the banter..What personally gets my goat is some clown on the microphone trying to gee everyone into cheering before a ball has even been kicked..so I say to my Club..”cmon..sort it out..show us some decent football and you’ll get your cheers “

  • Blue92 says:

    Gold only ever used to give us peanuts to spend 3 million here and there goes westham and splashes the cash

  • dave mann says:

    lee clarks a one off, the unsackable manager, the safest job in football as we speak,
    as jose said about himself….he is the special one…..about the owners,they do have to
    take respnsebility for our position as well as clark, theyve sold our best players, theyve
    give the manager no money to spend, its no wonder were in the bottom three.KRO.

  • Art Watson says:

    Dan,

    You have mentioned on numerous occasions the importance of not jeopardising the jobs of the people who are currently working at the club but isn’t this exactly what will happen if the fans do nothing.

    I don’t think this is a logical argument not to hold a public protest or to boycott the games.

    • almajir says:

      I keep saying it because people talk about administration as if it’s sunshine lollipops – when the fact is it’s messing with people’s lives. I want people to understand that it’s a serious thing if we go into admin and as much as it’s our club it’s their job – in other words to have a bit of compassion for a fellow human being instead of just being obsessed with a football club. This isn’t aimed at you btw Art, but you know what I mean.

  • ...sappy sad says:

    …………..Birmingham city is not the most important thing in my life by a long way ,…..but it is the only reason why I remain gutted for days on end when they lose ……..there is one thing I would like cleared up in my mind dan ,,,by not sending in the paperwork required to the hong kong stock exchange, was the share price of Birmingham city fc frozen ,.and was the shareholders paid monies including C.H. at this frozen rate by monies coming into the club ,e.g.parachute payments ,..gate money ,..the sale of players,.. even though with the possibility of the period of selling star players the share price would have fallen badly …please ease my mind as I no nothing about being a shareholder ,do shareholders get varying amounts of monies based on how high the share price is

  • Blueboy88 says:

    …the opposite of love is not hate — it’s apathy.
    It’s not giving a damn

    A lot of us love, just not enough

  • utbb says:

    there is only one person who can take away this apathy…..

  • dave mann says:

    theres love, then theres obsesion, ime proud to say ime obssesed…..pity otheres are not. KRO.

  • BlueB says:

    Maj.

    If the shares are to be relisted come January; is there anything to stop a significant purchase of those shares by the fans. Appreciate we dont know the price yet but given the lowly value of blues now in comparison to the purchase price, is there the potential for us to become signifcant share olders in bihl and force this issue?

  • Blooflame says:

    Valid point about the staff to be fair. I don’t believe protest is effective in all cases, in fact I used to think it counter productive. However, we are not in the Premiership, we are, in my personal view, being run by what can only be described as “magicians” (now you see it [money] now you don’t); The players are uncertain about the future, their manager and their families; and the very existence of this club is on the line. In that case I feel protest is well justified, indeed compulsory. Why? To highlight the intransigence toward the fans from the board and similarly, the intransigence of the Championship league to the finacial situation. They should have called time on this board long ago, it’s high time we reminded them. Protest is not toward the players nor those who staff BCFC. It should be directed at the team management, board and Championship.

  • Roy Smith says:

    If protest was really futile there would still be a Berlin Wall and Thatcher would have got her poll tax.
    What has failure to protest done for the club so far? Seen it slide into an ever worsening .
    condition day by day.
    It’s the same old ” I will always be loyal to the club” mantra.
    In other words l won’t protest even if I can see that someone is destroying the club. Is that loyalty?
    Many of the comments here strike me as being from people who will watch the club go under just so long as they can end up boasting that they were Blues’ most loyal fan. Is it about their egos or the survival of the club that they are most concerned?

  • robert kemp says:

    I am a season ticket holder and have been for many years and will continue to do so. I would like to see a protest at the next live game on sky whenever that my be and the fans going to the game could buy their tickets like normal and season ticket holders like me all stand outside the ground, this will not hurt the people running blues at ground level the players get paid and on tv the ground is empty to all the watching audience will see what the club means to us and a silence protest but not hurting the people at the club who are doing a sterling job in very difficult circumstances K.R.O

  • tamuffblue says:

    Dan – I have been made redundant several times and yes its a wretched time but I also must question the staffs integrity if the boot was on the other foot and they were offered new jobs or actively seeking new positions ???? also I am sure if Administration were to happen then those who are good at their jobs will be offred their positions back as experience is a much sought after qualitthy !!!!!! I must confess after reading and following your writings for quite awhile now my personal feelings are the ONLY way to rid us of these people is for the business as a whole to be placed in administration and start afresh

    comment edited – mate, there are things you just cannot say, keep it sensible.

    • almajir says:

      I have too; and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. As for questioning integrity mate – I find that almost offensive as I know many of them and they’re working their nuts off for the club.

  • ZuluVet says:

    Kazakblue’s earlier comments mirror my own feelings….as an exiled blue from Essex who still makes the trip up with my son whenever we can. As for protests no they never work – didn’t work when we had the Kumars; didn’t work for Portsmouth or Palace or Glasgow Rangers. Things will evolve – our rise will come around again, maybe before this season is over, maybe next.

    What bothers me in the meantime is Clark has to give us a team to get behind – I don’t mean delivering what he can’t results wise with a threadbare squad – but a team that fights like hell and shows a desire to overcome the odds. That’s why there is so much apathy around the stadium more than any other reason.

    I for one would rather see a team of young players who gave it all and helped instil some lung-busting pride rather than the insipid stuff we have seen way too many times in the last 18 months. But can he do it ? I would love to think so but have my doubts. Teams like Barnsley do it – so why can’t we ? Its the least we deserve – whatever the circumstances.

  • Mike says:

    Still think we the fans should unite behind the staff at the club and the blues supporters in the team ( and the other players that care) and fill the ground..back the youngsters …be defiant to yeung ….and show the world no one can take our club away….

  • Art Watson says:

    Dan,

    I fully understand and accept what you are saying about the ramifications of administration but do you have any other suggestions which could help focus the minds of these pratts in HK.Your article adequately covers the reasons why you are against boycotts and protests but doesn’t give an alternative way forward and to do nothing could lead the club into admin anyway.

    • almajir says:

      Art

      I think you need to understand that there isn’t much we can do yet to “focus the minds” of the people in HK – that’s the whole point. The chief effect of protest would be to make people feel like they’re doing something – unless you’ve got a wad of dosh nothing is going to change, yet.

      However… if/when Carson is convicted maybe pressure could be bought to bear on the FL to enforce their own rules which would force a sale. That’s what I would do.

      • Art Watson says:

        Hmmm!

        Reading your court reports the verdict could take a few more months and in the meantime the club is rapidly going down the pan.

        Surely we should try to do something ?

        • almajir says:

          Like what, Art?

          I see lots of people talking about stuff, I don’t ever see anyone (bar Margaret of Long Long Road) actually doing anything. If people want to do something DO IT.

  • people's republic of Finlan says:

    With all due respect boycott is pointless but protest is something that should be done it lets people know your not happy with what’s going on and that for me is the point. Yes it probably aint going to knock any walls down but in your heart you know you turned up said I not happy with the regime and at least you can say you tried
    banners up before the game after the game and cheer the team on during the game
    KRO DNM

  • people's republic of Finlan says:

    Remember the tank and protester in Tiananmen Square???? didn’t achieve anything apart from world wide coverage

  • blue says:

    not a supporter at present, but forever a fan,just a thought to how about supporters wanting to show their feelings and lodge a protest,delay going into the stadium 15-20,after singing your hearts out outside around the ground. maybe with KRO+DNM posters,t-shirts etc. all supporters would need to do is pick a game or games and see who’s willing to hold back in solidarity.sadly it’ll probably only be a token gesture.

    KRO

  • ...sappy sad says:

    …………in this world of spies and earwiggers I think most people would feel safer protesting from their own homes ………pick a co find a number pick a text find a email pick a day and let 20,000 fans make a complaint

  • Paul Tennyson says:

    Doing nothing is not an option anymore , it’s funny how we can manage to sell our allocation for play offs finals / cup finals and also European games and then also hear so called blues fans complaining they can’t tickets for these games , fair weather blues fans are more fickle than most! There are plenty of blues fans out there from the numbers that attended these ‘ big games ‘ that need to get behind the club and find their voice now , not just when things are going well , I know the weather isn’t great at the moment but how about a sit – in or at least a banner in every stand saying carson must go in Chinese, if you are a blues season ticket holder how many people do you know that profess to be a blues fan? But haven’t been down for years ? Quite a few I’ll bet , it’s time we found all our collective voices and done something about it because the club is dying , no one else is interested so come on blues fans past and present get yourselves down there and protest , Dan , I know you are a just one man with a website but you are more eloquent than most, how about a few suggestions regarding protests? What do you think about a sit – in? We can’t just let things carry on as they are KRO

    • almajir says:

      Why don’t you lead it?

      • Paul Tennyson says:

        Like I said Dan , I honestly think you are more eloquent than most and there are thousands and thousands of blues fans out there who incredibly frustrated but don’t know how to go about voicing their frustrations, until we all speak as one voice the current situation will just drift onwards , what do you think about a sit – in ? If only for fifteen minutes just to let people know we’re not happy, fan power can make a difference , it’s just an idea, we can’t keep doing nothing , I’ve not got the ability to speak to lots of people about leading such a protest but would love to see someone who could.

        • almajir says:

          Honestly – I think it would cause hassles for the club, it would inflate police bills because you know someone is going to act the dickhead and I think it would be difficult to organise.

          • Paul Tennyson says:

            Ok then, how about a banner as big as we can get going round the ground saying in English and Chinese ‘ Carson Out ‘ and ‘ Delay No More’

          • almajir says:

            Paul – do it. Don’t tell me, show me (isn’t that what we say to players?)

  • TILTONTANK says:

    The next game on Sky fill the ground, support the team and get huge banners out that are written in Cantonese and English – “Carson is killing our club” “Carson get out” “When Carson is gone We will rise again” etc. I remember reading that some people dont like the old-sheet waving thing as it feels a bit vile, but thats nonsense- its universal in protesting. Who’s got the balls?

  • The blue says:

    All this lets protest and do this and do that who the hell is it going to effect the owners ? No the only people are the 11 on the pitch pulling on the blue shirt the shirt we as so called supporters are so suppose to be supporting and getting behind like I be Saturday at Huddersfield and next week at home and if I am the only one there so be it coz I am a blues fan always have and always will

  • Matt says:

    So let’s talk about it for another 2 years….

    German scarfs and a song will do nothing, stay away and away games is my stance.

  • andy says:

    as an expat i can’t believe there’s been no protest of some description apart from 3,000 doing it with their feet of course
    i get over when i can and dedicate my saturdays listening to the game. I know other expat blues who like me can’t believe nothing has happened, we were there with the kumar & wheldon era, we had no phones, no internet or Facebook but we protested and got results
    i know the owners aren’t there but OP spelt it out with ‘delay no more” let the cameras pick up on it, the chinese will lap it up.
    i can’t believe no-one has done anything , like texan pete says protest , have all the old skool left the country? i think so , delay no more!, 1 banner c’mon FFS

    • Art Watson says:

      Andy,

      I share your frustrations and maybe the majority of fans don’t think the club is worth fighting for.

      I think” apathy “sums it up nicely.

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    At the moment we have an owner who is on a charge of money laundering. He hasn’t been found guilty yet. If found to be innocent then what? What can a protest achieve? And what is the protest about? These are hypotheticals but if he is innocent then what exactly has he done wrong?

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    A bit of a silly response Paul, I said hypothetically. Do you remember OJ Simpson? There is a lot of talk of protest and I just wanted clarification of WHAT EXACTLY the protest would be about? And hypothetically WHAT IF he is found innocent?

    • Paul Tennyson says:

      The protest would be about Carson taking money out of the club by asset stripping eg selling all of our best players , taking gate receipts , television money etc etc etc , a billionaire hairdresser? He must have been knocking out quite a few perms. ………… I remember OJ Simpson well, where is he now I wonder? Seriously now , Carson Yeung is bleeding the club dry and we need new owners before the club goes into a meltdown which we may never recover from

  • Euston 9.18 says:

    Surprised one of the Sunday papers haven’t picked up on a potential money laundering conviction which might involve future Olympic stadium tenants .

    We were told by the owners who sold BIRMINGHAM CITY to carson,he was KOSHER !!!!!!!

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    It wasn’t really in the previous owners remit to check the credentials of CY as the powers that be have their own checks and balances but they are all limited in how deep they can go, the police had not arrested him at that point so there was obviously no evidence of wrong doing at that time.

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    Paul, I asked what if?…..Any ideas?

  • mark says:

    Teenage Academy scholars Demarai Gray and Reece Brown are set to be offered their first professional contracts with Birmingham City

    Read more: http://www.birmingham.vitalfootball.co.uk/article.asp?a=338111#ixzz2jznbnNOF NOT bad for club that stint……………………

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    The whole point is that if he was innocent and had his assets frozen unfairly then what choice did he have if he wanted to survive the court case and continue to run the club . Then what would the protests have been about? Its hardly asset stripping its tight financial management against all the odds. I have a sneaking regard for him in this sense. I would obviously like new ow ers at this point but not just anyone. Palladini at the helm and Ron Atkinson as manager….no thanks!

    • Paul Tennyson says:

      What if he is found to be innocent? Well he can undo what he’ s been doing since he got arrested then can’t he ? I honestly think you are living in cloud cuckoo land if you think he is innocent, and Ron Atkinson would be our next manager if Paladini took over, do you still write to Father Christmas by the way ? It’s that time of year ……………..

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    If you cannot conduct a conversation in an adult manner pleaase dont bother responding to my posts. If you read this blog regularly you would see that Atkinsoon has been mentioned as a potential manager on numerous occasions under Palladini. Why should an innocent person (if that was the scenario) be held responsible for actions carried out to preserve his interests in the case of wrongful freezing of his assets?

  • Steve Aerobic says:

    Also Paul, if you read my posts you will note that at no point have I ever said that I think he is innocent, I just posed the questuon what if? In life its always prudent to expect the unexpected, if you do not my friend then it is you living in cloud cuckoo land. I think thoughts of early takeovers and white knights lend themselves to Father Christmas ahead of my comments!


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