Often Partisan

OP in HK – How Deep is Our Love?

It’s my last evening in Hong Kong tonight, and as such I accepted the invitation of a friend of mine to watch the Leicester game at a bar he owns (no, it’s not a girlie bar before you ask – it’s not even in Wan Chai). Watching the game and talking to my friend I thought about the way HK views football in England and I thought they were thoughts worth sharing.

My friend here loves football. He’s never been to a live game – in fact, I’ve been to more live games here in Hong Kong than he has – but he watches the Premier League religiously. It was interesting talking to him as he has a completely different perspective on the game to me.

He knows I’m a Blues fan, and he asked me what it was like to watch a game in the stadium. I told him about going to places like the George, and showed him some of Davo’s video diaries to give him a flavour of what it’s like to be a Blues fan – and he remarked about how loud, how noisy and how intense we were… and I’ll be honest, they weren’t games I remembered particularly for atmosphere.

It got me thinking about the whole ownership thing, and about the impending potential buyout by Paul Suen and Trillion Trophy Asia. If you remember on Tuesday. they told me that they knew the fans loved the club – but I wondered after speaking to my friend if they understand just how much Blues fans love their club.

I mean, if you’ve never been to a game – and I don’t know if TTA have or not, but I’m going to assume that they haven’t – how could you know what it’s like to be in the Tilton when it’s bouncing? How can you understand the camaraderie if you’ve never been in the pubs around the ground beforehand; how can you feel the emotional rollercoaster as a game ebbs and flows if you’re not as invested in the club as Blues fans are?

I’ve had people ask me if I feel more positive about things having spoken to various sources out here and it’s a difficult question to answer because the truth is I don’t feel more positive or negative; I’m still as circumspect as ever. I don’t want people to think that everything is great or everything is going to pot based purely on what I feel; like everything I’m going to reserve judgement until something happens because it’s the safest way good or bad.

The big thing for me is how TTA react now. I’ve heard that they monitor this site (among others) and if this is true, I want them to know that having a bloke say something to me for a minute or two is a nice start but there has to be more. Blues fans do love the club; they live and breathe it and as such it would be common courtesy to at least have one person as a face and name we can put to as owner.

Part of the reason I think Panos Pavlakis enjoys so much goodwill is because Blues fans know who he is and how to send him a message; if TTA are to win our goodwill and trust I think they have to put a figurehead up to be similar. Even that is fleeting; there will come a time when words aren’t enough and actions are necessary too but personally, I at least am willing to take things one step at a time.

My hope is that once the EGM is done and things are moving somebody from TTA comes to St Andrew’s to show their face on the Kop; and that they understand that everything us Blues fans do – from people like me or the Blues Trust through to the Tilton Alliance and the Blues Collective – is done because they truly love the club.

Understanding how deep that love goes and what makes us Blues fans tick could be their route to success, in my very humble opinion.

This trip wouldn’t have happened without the support of Blues fans including: Richard Wildsmith, “Eudyptula”, David Pugh, Art Watson, Roger Hooper, Gordon Fletcher, Gary Loveridge, Michael Hancox, G Miles, Neil Pouney, the Blues Trust, Blues Middle East, PJ Planning, Open Tax Services and many others.

76 Responses to “OP in HK – How Deep is Our Love?”

  • bluenose08 says:

    To most owners a football club is just a business, as for a figurehead it would be good if panos continued in that role as a go between fans and owners.

  • Brian says:

    For me the main problem is the not knowing what is going to happen, not understanding the possibilities or non possibilities, who is who and the whys. Suspecting we are just flotsam in the Chines wind being blown from one egoistical money making adventure to the next. How can you have hope when the future is so uncertain, we are in the hands of people we do not know or trust.

  • peter bates says:

    As I have said before owners managers and players come and go but real genuine supporters are there for life and I am sure if owners got to know what being a lifelong fan of one club means they would be open and honest and whatever successes or failures come along the fans would share it but to do and say nothing makes failing worse blues fans have taken enough crap over the years and it infuriates me when owners do not have the decency to speak to the fans and that includes potential owners we heard at blues about protests against Carson young and Peter pannu but they are so wrapped up in themselves it wouldn’t matte who they owned the fans don’t matter so tta saying nothing comes as no surprise I hope panos is still at blues when it changes hands he has done a great job even if its to let the fans know what’s happening thanks again Daniel kro

  • steve says:

    All we can hope is that they do the best for BCFC. If they’re not going to keep us,i hope they have somebody lined up to buy us. The last thing we want is owners that aren’t 100% committed to us.

  • ChrisG says:

    Dan in your opinion do you feel this last week has been a worthwhile experience?, has it answered a lot of your questions or has it raised more questions than answers?.

    • almajir says:

      It’s been a worthwhile experience. It’s answered some questions, raised others but it’s more than that. I’ll explain properly in an article on my return.

  • Darren Brown says:

    The passion I personally feel for my club echoes in my son who is glued to who might take over our club and maybe buy players we might buy.
    Things are very positive at the moment and let keep things moving forward with ticket sales etc.

  • Art says:

    My passion stems from my late father-I was 8 years old when he took me to watch us best Arsenel 4-0.The ground was packed and Gil Merrick played a blinder.

    I’m sure there are many stories like mine and yes TTA will never capture or buy the passion I have for the Blues because it’s been a very important part of my life and you can’t buy passion.

  • Dave Mann says:

    My sentiments exactly . KRO

  • AussieBlue says:

    There is something very special about true Birmingham people and BCFC that inspires unshakable loyalty. I honestly don’t know what it is, perhaps the working-class ‘bashing metal’ bond but I think it goes beyond that, hardly anyone bashes metal anymore. I’ve just has a visit from an old Brum mate I haven’t seen for 40 years. Another two live here in Oz and I’ve known one since age 11, the other 15. When I go back every few years, apart from family, there are also (an admittedly dwindling) group of mates who greet me like I’d just been away to Portugal for 2 weeks. As we say here, we don’t “p*ss” in each other’s pockets but we stay close and loyal…and friends. This is a foundation principle of BCFC; it’s just a thoroughly decent football club, with all of its faults. The ownership issues will never undermine the bedrock of the Club, and maybe TTA is being won over by what they see.
    Nice work in HK Dan. KRO

  • Bluenosesol says:

    My family come from the Aston slums and my uncle took me to Villa Park for 2 years before I set foot in Stans. At the age of 8 I set foot in St Andrews and something touched my very soul. Its my 60th birthday today and I feel as at one with all the Bluenoses as I ever did. Blues always keep me grounded and in touch with my fellow “proper” brummies. As I have grown older and become more passive, I cuddle the grandkids and sip my malt whisky. I then go down the Blues and find myself joining in the choruses of SOTV! Your a bad influence guys but I love you all!!! KRO!!

  • ian ambrose says:

    Good luck by 31st May final court in HK and What next then what ???????? Why Carson take over at BCFC 1st place ????…. I blame to David O’Sullvian and David Gold accepted to Carson both unprofessional deal with Carson……. Where 7 bidder takeover at blues????….. I don’t understand all in HK in China Rules……..FA can help to with BCFC?????……. Most peoples blues fan has stress too long awaiting hearing from HK court over 3 years !!!!…. Slow snail ……——@/”

  • It’s all called roots , but there are other sorts of fans their are women fans bless them that have a one player loyalty which turns into club loyalty , buts let’s give new owners a chance as nobody likes losing , especially if you have put millions into something , and before you get love you have to like in the first place , blues need more supporters to succeed , the last thing we want is to turn future fans away by making them feel inferior fans , so let’s give new fans a bit of slack so they can develop into long term fans …KRO

  • Gerard says:

    My first game boxing day 1956 we beat Sheff Wed 4-0 I can still name the team , my xmas treat as a 6 year old , walked to the ground and back totally elated – it is our team no one elses BCFC still belongs to its supporters despite all the setbacks and crap thrown at us MAY IT NEVER CHANGE- i look around sometimes at my fellow bluenoses when i am at a game , i am a season ticket holder- you can see the total passion , love and desire for the club in their body language eyes and actions , we are unique a throw back to the past, working class loyal supporters not glory seekers , still genuine in our beliefs , may it never change – Troy Deeney stated that although a committed bluenose the Vile are the biggest club in the West Midland- he has his opinion i have mine which differ, we have bigger hearts, bigger love than the crap across the city something that makes me smile, they know it too, although they will never admit it, it riles them , secretly they envy our support, IT MAKES US THE BETTER CLUB BY FAR, as do so many other so called glory clubs and there supporters long may it stay that way and finally most of our support comes within the City of Birmingham unlike the rubbish across the City , and as most glory seeking supporters are either armchair bound or do not support their home team another similarity to the Vile K.R.O

    Ask Fulham , Derby Milton Keynes supporters who they envy most answer= us bluenoses i rest my case

  • Dave Mann says:

    Gerard, well said mate and yes our support and passion is truly admirable … Going away from home and you see it ten fold , the home fans seem intimidated and mesmerised by the support our away fans give , never mind looking at our home fans for support , you should take a look at the away fan supporting Blues , the blood vessels are visable and the emotions uncontrollable at the vocal encouragement our away support gives … Friday night was a good game and a good atmosphere at stans and I hope the good news coming out of Hong Kong will roll into next season and we can go again … It might sound daft but I pray every day of my life for being born in Birmingham and a Bluenose and it’s a very privelaged position to hold . KRO

    • Bluey says:

      Surely the away fans are part of the home fans? Why do they sing loud and proud away and not bother at home? I know many fans who go to most home games but rarely away and i think they`d find it offensive that you`d put the travellers on a pedestal ahead of the `homers`.

      • Dave Mann says:

        I’ve got every respect for season ticket ” homers” Bluey and fans who get to as many games as possible but I was just making the fact that our support away is more intense and supportive towards players than at home , I know a lot of fans who only do away games and not home games and I certainly don’t put them on a pedestal .. I do both so am entitled I think but that’s just my opinion ofcourse . KRO

        • Shirley Blue says:

          Only problem with people attending away games only is that do not put a single penny into Birmingham City football club so I wouldn’t give them too much credit to be honest. Good job we all don’t do that isn’t it because we wouldn’t have a club to support.

  • Gerard says:

    Agree with your feelings , I was at Fulham ,Milton Keynes plus others this season – I looked around at my fellow totally committed bluenoses and I too felt privileged , did you know the Milton Keynes away following on that particular day was the biggest away following of all the divisions, says it all , whatever happens in the future and I pray just for good news, we shall go on supporting and loving the club till we leave this earth that is certain KRO

    Just ordered a number plate last 3 letters KRO- not really into personal number plates that it certainly is Not however proud to display the letters and my feelings as a blue nose

  • Dave Mann says:

    Sounds good to me . KRO

  • peter bates says:

    Sorry Ian can’t blame Sullivan and gold if somebody came to me and offered 500 for my 70 pound flymo id take it they saw a good deal and took it it was Carson young who let our club down clear and simple kro

    • ian ambrose says:

      Peter, David and Gold should think twice to check bank statement from Carson 1st place then agree deal and solicitor sign on it !!…Now big problem with Carson in prison Let us down blues fans and few fans 15,000 at home !!! Should blues fan bring it back support to help blues new player….. Hope so next new season blues fan will be 25,000 fan at home everyweek Like RANGER FC full house everyweek cos Help to club !!!

  • peter bates says:

    And before anyone says anything I’m not comparing the club with my flymo kro

  • Steve Evans says:

    Boxing Day 1956 – my first game as well!

    Mathemeticians, what are the odds against that?

  • peter bates says:

    In regard to home and away support ten defeats at home doesn’t make you want to sing and the management said a while ago we haven’t give the supporters a lot to cheer at home kro

  • beegeeblueboy says:

    “… ’cause we’re living in a world of fools, breaking us down”

  • Gerard says:

    Steve Evans- I was 6 years old now 60 years on 2 league cup winners and a few promotions plus Johnstone Paint trophy , Anglo Italian and Inter City Fairs Cup adventures would not swap it for the world

    beegee blue boy ? slightly puzzling ? prefer Elgars Nimrod my self

  • peter bates says:

    Agree on the points Dave but lets be honest performances at home have been rather dull and isn’t it the performance that makes you feel like singing and being able to enjoy it after the game has finished kro

    • Dave Mann says:

      Yes but we have had just as bad away performances as at home .. Hull, Sheffield Wednesday ,QPR ,Charlton to name a few but the support is great and that’s not the case at stans , sorry but my opinion . KRO

  • peter bates says:

    I understand that Dave so are you saying the supporters who go away only sing at away games because the atmosphere at St Andrews is awful although it wasn’t too bad against boro kro

  • Dave Mann says:

    To be honest Peter I think it’s just the atmosphere of a day out travelling around the country supporting your team … You tend to get involved more as your all enclosed together in one part of the ground and you sing more , chant more and it’s more of a family atmosphere and I understand that and yes I’ve already mentioned the Friday night game against ‘ Boro being a lot better and I honestly hope it’s like that next season but as you rightly say we have to improve results and performances at home to get that same feel we get at away games .KRO

  • I hope GR aims high enough in the transfer market , as to make headway next season we need to improve on this season in certain areas ,we need players that are doing it now, not in three years time when we will need to think about changing a couple of stars then .goals, . passing ,.and a little better defending,..KRO

    • Hillfield Blues says:

      The players that are “doing it now’ are the ones that cost you the money and it’s still unclear how much is going to be available to GR right now.
      I just hope that a few lessons have been learnt from last year and we can be more incisive but again I suppose that’s relative to the budget GR has.

  • It’s a hard call again for GR , when you go through every clubs squads from the championship down to div two , to find the all round ability blues need to get a bit more reliability with out of contract players this summer thien it leaves you with only about a dozen players that can do it now , and that’s debatable , still GR can only do his best .

  • Leicester champions , get in there …..

  • mark says:

    what did the fox say…..

  • How deep is our love , and bring back Mitchell

    • mark says:

      hi william bet DG a happy boy…..lets hope he don’t find himself bench warming for next few seasons…..maybe GR should get him back on some kind season loan deal……..

  • We have had to many bench warmers mark at stans , I admire leicester they have got themselves up and gone for it , they are the new Midlands taskmasters , and good on them for it , blues are still not firing on all barrels , but the Boro showing shows that we are getting there, KRO

    • mark says:

      tbh william not sure about that my friend one good display obviously does not make a season.
      Them players showed up at Boro purely in a attempt to either get resigned or they happen to raise their game on that given evening.Other matches they were not to be seen. Being the last home game of the season you would expect this whether we were playing boro or not would you not agree. GR should have instilled that they raised their game. I said probably five matches ago that we wont get another 3pts this season, and i believe we wont…A big why the defense is absolutely shocking, and GR being a defender himself cannot sort that out……

  • Dave Mann says:

    We were the only midland team to win a major trophy this century .. Make that now the only west midland team to win a major trophy this century .. Well done Leicester and lest hope Blues can do similar next season though it’s highly unlikely .. Still Cardiff to look forward to . KRO

  • mark says:

    bcfcacademy watch future stars for free……..kro

  • StaffsBlue says:

    To think, that last season, Leicester were heading for the drop with just a handful of games to go.. now 12 months on, they’ve won the Premier league. It’s the best thing to happen to football in a very long time. It just shows though, that anything can happen. Football’s a funny old game, as Greavsie once said.

  • peter bates says:

    Well done Leicester thoroughly deserved but couldn’t help thinking how being used and treated with total disrespect by Carson and pannu how far we have fell can only say well done Gary Rowett and his coaches and panos pavlakis for giving us a little belief that real good times are around the corner and I must admit watching Burnley and listening how there club has been run made me a little envious that good people within any club can make a massive difference lets hope our turn is not too far away kro

  • Dave Mann says:

    It must be a funny old game staffs .. Me and you saying that Gray should be sold because he wouldn’t get in the Blues team earlier this season and now he’s on tv this morning jumping around behind a premiership champions banner as the member of the premier league champions squad . Ok he hasent played much but my god he must be regretting the day he left his beloved Blues for the blues of leicester , he’s having a laugh now!! KRO

  • The good I see in blues is the quality goals goals I see from the midfield ,

  • peter bates says:

    What I mean mark was owning the club as Carson did him and his cronies ripped the guts out of our club and I say our club feeling very angry that our club was almost gone because of people who didn’t care about our club but still took what they wanted kro

    • mark says:

      sadly we not heard factual evidence from either Carson or PP that they don’t care about our club if where lets see the evidence, have you got factual evidence to back that claim peter….. i personally not seen any media spin regarding any news they said any thing bad about our club……we know PP dislikes Daniel but that’s personal between them……sorry if we slightly disagree on this agenda…..

      • almajir says:


        Nice assumption you made there about my thoughts and actions, thanks

        • stilflatshadow says:

          Nice response in the third person.
          Mark’s an apostle, as a man of the cloth he can do and say what he bloody well likes.
          You on the other hand are verging on apostasy.
          Almanac, nobody is a small fish until the swim is over cool your jets Mr. Big time.
          Journalism not quite treating you how you expected?
          Regards the whitefish.

          • almajir says:

            Do you know what an apostle is? Or what apostasy means? I don’t think you do mate, consult a dictionary before being wordy with your insults. Also learn to spell “almajir”, it’s not hard :)

  • mark says:

    roberts Tesche could a return be possible does he love the blues enough? does have the desire/passion or just another freeloader!

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Loving a club doesn’t exist for players anymore.. the love of money is far more important. The days of the Gerrards, Carraghers and Brookings are long gone, never to return I would think.

  • peter bates says:

    Well mark if that’s how you act when your supposed to care about something and they never actually did say they cared either then there way of caring differs from mine greatly kro

    • mark says:

      sorry peter to come back to your comments…just thought if you got time please read PP response to Daniel 2nd December 2014 he clearly stated he equally love the club. Now you can turn that around as much as you like…but he clearly stated he loved the club…..I don’t think he has ever said a bad word about the club. He went on to say about the fans obviously in his opinion he felt at the time that the chanting and hostile reception floating around would reflected onto the players especially while playing at home games……..even though our away record was good must tell you we had some cracking away days…..kro

  • peter bates says:

    Read how Gary Rowett wants to sort out the players we are releasing before Cardiff game wonder how many in first team squad will be going in Monday and informing Gary they want to leave or will they wait after there hols kro

    • StaffsBlue says:

      We can all have a guess at who Rowett is letting go and we wouldn’t be too far off I don’t think. Then it’s a case of, do we have anyone in our first team who might interest other clubs? I can’t think of too many tbh. I don’t think this season’s squad will change that much, maybe 3 or 4 additions, but that’s about it. Personally, I think we need more like 5 or 6, but by Rowett’s thinking, that ain’t gonna happen.

  • bhamcityjulian says:

    It Gary’s going to accept transfer requests then I expect Donaldson and Cotterill to be top of the list

    • Hillfield Blues says:

      Why?Both have signed very good contracts recently and been crap ever since.

      • StaffsBlue says:

        It’s possible that we could get over a million for the both of them… and it’s because of those good contracts that we’ll be able to command half decent fees. If they were out of contract, we’d get zilch. We’ve had 2 good seasons out of them. Anything we make out of them now can be spent on the team.

        • Hillfield Blues says:

          My point was why would they ask for moves?Donaldsons contract was particularly good for his age.Must have been frustrating for GR for them to dip in form having been rewarded with good deals.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            They don’t have to ask for a move for another club to come in for them. Perhaps they might fancy one last big contract. Stranger things have happened.

  • Talk of selling our best players again means we are back to the the Lee Clarke days , fire sales ect ,…HOW DEEP IS OUR LOVE ,..if your partner shows no feeling for you what so ever , HOW DEEP IS OUR LOVE when your partner fails to support you in hard times ….with Carson s chances looking poor I would have thought TTA would have had enough confidence to give BCFC another loan for players so we can go for promotion , still we have a few months for them to show what love they have for the club we have sold Gray we will see how much give and take TTA has in this affair …..KRO

  • Melbourne Blue says:

    I have loved the Blues since I was eight years old and I turn 70 on May 16!!!

    My first match ever was Villa v Wolves in October 1955. My Dad took me and Villa won 4-2.

    But once my uncle heard I’d been to a Villa match he took me down the Blues the following week to see them play Manchester City. We won 4-3 and I had a choice to make … Villa or Blues.

    I still don’t know why, but I chose Blues and my rollercoaster ride had begun.

    Later that season my uncle took me to Brisbane Road to watch the FA Cup 4th round match away at Leyton Orient, a match played in one of those classic peasouper fogs which England had in those days.

    We stood behind one of the goals and saw Blues’ first three goals in a 4-0 win. Didn’t see the fourth because it was at the other end of the ground and we couldn’t see past the penalty area at our end..

    I remember getting on the train at Euston for the trip home and right next to us was a train containing Manchester City fans on their way back from beating, from memory, Southend United in their 4th round match and there was lots of good-natured banter through the open windows.

    Little did we know we would meet them in the FA Cup final later that same season. We lost, of course.

    I have been in Australia since I was 22 but have never lost my love for the Blues.

    I visited England in 2015 with my Aussie wife and saw three matches at St Andrews … wins over Wolves and Charlton and a draw with Blackburn. All the old memories came back.


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