Often Partisan

The Golden Apple of Apathy

Forza Blues have come under a lot of criticism on Birmingham City messageboards over their away trip to Yeovil; with claims that they had received ticketing out of normal priority and then the revelation that due to driver error they hadn’t even made the game.

The chief criticism seems to be that they are exercising undue influence over the club in proportion to their member base – an accusation that has been levelled at other groups such as the Blues Trust in the past.

For me, it’s always been a tough line to walk as a writer of an independent Birmingham City blog. Get too close and you get accused of “cozying up to the club” or “having undue influence”; don’t get close enough and it’s “hasn’t got a clue what’s going on” or “out of touch”. It’s a line I’ve had trouble with and I will freely admit to having made mistakes in the past and that I probably will in the future – mainly because I have to balance up my natural desire to want to help the club with an objective realisation that I’m only one person and my opinions shouldn’t really matter any more than anyone elses.

I feel a lot for Paul who runs Forza Blues; his heart is in the right place and I don’t know many people with as much passion for the club who want to do so much for it. He’s having to run through a gamut of stick at the moment from the more cynical members of the fanbase because of his passion and because he wants to make a difference. I will admit I don’t agree with him on a lot of things – I abhor the whole idea of orchestrated fan involvement, holding cards and using musical instruments because for me it’s not what a football club is about – but I cannot deny that he only wants what is best for the team.

I think it’s symptomatic of what is a wider problem that the club faces. The club openly desire a more atmospheric stadium; a stadium that is a cauldron of noise and that has the tension is a massive selling point to bringing the fans back but it is a catch-22 situation in that will not, can not occur without the fans coming back. Any initiatives to try to recreate that atmosphere are seen as “plastic” because it’s not the way it used to be done; atmosphere has to be organic and spontaneous but of course the club cannot rely on things that “might” happen.

It’s also the difficulty of bridging the gap between the club and the fans. Unfortunately, after a succession of owners in the last three decades at least who have seen the fans as nothing more than customers coming through the gate fans have acted like customers – only coming when they feel that they are getting value for money and rejecting an “inferior” product of lower division football. When the club has tried to make a difference it’s been rejected with cynicism from some who are disaffected by the way things have changed. It’s a fact of business that it’s harder to bring back an old customer than to bring in a completely new one – because the old customer who has left still has the reasons in their head as to why they changed their spending habits – it’s hard to get back into the habit as it were.

The problem is that there is no easy answer. I know some will insist on getting rid of the current owners will make a difference but I’ve heard people saying they would return when McLeish got sacked, when Bruce got sacked, or when the last board left – and in the main, they didn’t. Apathy towards the current board may be seen as an issue by some but I think there is a bigger issue in the apathy towards the club because of how people’s priorities have changed. If Blues are to be successful – even with new owners – they will need backing in the stands with increased attendances etc. We can’t expect a new bloke to put his hand in his pocket to resurrect the club if the fans won’t do it either, can we?

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147 Responses to “The Golden Apple of Apathy”

  • Scoobers says:

    Likewise you can’t expect fans to keep putting money into a club if the owners aren’t.

    The aatmosphere will be better when fans can see some real hope.

    • almajir says:

      Catch-22 again

      • John says:

        Unfortunately it is catch 22, with no chance of the present owners, ever putting money into the club again and the majority of the team, after three games,looking out of their class,there is little chance of encouraging supporters back to St.Andrews. As a season ticket holder,i won’t miss any games,but,after yesterdays bore, with little or no chance of improving the team, i can understand people staying away.

  • tamuffblue says:

    What a tremendous spot on valuation of the current situ at Stans – very well written and precise – and bang on the money as to the problems we have and face !!!!!!!

  • ego says:

    To be far i cant afford to get 3 season tickets every year but i do because i love my saturdays @ st andrews seeing blues if its good all bad you have to take the ruff wit the smooth thats life we have had bad times we have had good times the good will come again, its alright saying i aint going till this board go that manger goes for me its about supporting my team and having quality time with family and friends when the football season isnt here i miss it kro we will be back tats for certain.

  • Fred Leeson says:

    I think you have to forget about who ‘owns’ the club and just enjoy being a Blues supporter. I fully appreciate why people will not turn out under the present owner – it is a free world. However, it is very important for me to remain loyal under any circumstances. KRO! [We have to]

  • Mark1875 says:

    Stating the obvious.

  • Blueboy88 says:

    The easiest way to create stadium atmosphere is by giving the punters something to shout about on the pitch.
    No catch 22 there , that is totally down to the owners management & players.

    • Scoobers says:

      I agree. Some fans will go no matter what, however Pannu and Yeung have given fans many reasons not to go and you can’t blame anyone who stays away at present. Attendances are gradually dwindling, average attendance last season was over 3k down and this will continue unless the club gives fans realistic hope

  • KiwiJohn says:

    On the whole I agree with your observasions BUT you say “I’m only one person and my opinions shouldn’t really matter any more than anyone elses.” I must say I disagree entirely. You are very articulate and have well rounded opinions based on common sense. You are only saying, and saying it very well, what others of us are thinking. You should have the courage of your convictions. You’re an eloquent and talented writer. Alot of us read your observations and arguements and find them compelling. Keep up the blog – Keeps me in touch all the way down here in New Zealandl. KRO

  • Lee says:

    It is catch 22, no question, good owners/bad owners but in our case if someone is being done for money laundering and the club is selling everything without a penny investment people will simply not go, if doesn’t matter if he isn’t robbing the club, it’s the whole scenario which turns people away, money is not given out it has to be earnt, this guy is being given 13k a week without actually being in the country, and these people prey on fans loyalty, we are in a different situation to most clubs but also pannu has absolutely no idea how to make a football club/fan work, he’s gone about everything totally wrong, every now and then new stories come out with money coming out the club and going to china, I could happily accept a lower standard of football if the club were run right, like charlton used to be run, I simply refuse to put money towards Peter pannu’s 13k a week whilst season ticket prices remain the same as the day we were relegated from the prem while lower league players who most in fairness are not worthy of a blues shirt fill the side and players like butland and Redmond are practically being given away, it’s just wrong

    comment edited – please be careful banding around words like “crook”. Someone isn’t a criminal until they are convicted of a crime and to contend otherwise is libellous

    • Peter says:

      Don’t think this is the reason. I just think people wont go as they expect success and top flight football. Ty use ownership as an excuse, but reality is the division we are in is impacted by owners and people cannot be bothered. Our fans started becoming apathetic 6 Yeats ago before any of this.

  • Tony says:

    You talk about atmosphere Dan but you cant generate that, its spontaneous,It comes from the whole flavour of the crowd.
    You cant generate it with music , whistles, bells. It comes from within, from a full house, and you dont get a full house with a team that cant score, one own goal in three matches wont do it.
    You were asked a question today about exactly whats gone on with King, you chose once again to ignore it, you intimate that something has gone on but will not say what.
    Yesterday I used the word apathy today you have used it too ,we may have used the word in different context but it remains apathy.

    • almajir says:

      Tony

      1) I think if you read the article again, I did use the exact word spontaneous to describe how an atmosphere is generated. Thank you for agreeing with me

      2) Unfortunately Tony, due to the fact I’m in a different time zone, and doing stuff away from the website a lot, sometimes you might not get an immediate answer. I know that isn’t good enough, bearing in mind how much work I put into the site etc in my own time, and I’ll try to do better in future.

      As for King, I might have mentioned this before but he doesn’t want to be at the club, and Clark doesn’t want him. I’m not sure how much clearer than that I can put it, but I’ll try.

      KING WANTS TO LEAVE THE CLUB.

      Does that help?

      • AF says:

        Marlon King is our best striker though, probably our only hope of scoring goals at present and its a criminal waste of his salary that he isn’t played as we head into the mire of a releation battle.

        • almajir says:

          I agree it’s a waste of money, we need shot of him ASAP because he won’t play for Clark again.

          • AF says:

            Agreed he either needs to be gone, or playing. So what happens if he goes as the present strike force needs bolstering, Zigic is injured and what happens if he doesn’t get fixed up. Surely he has to play?

          • AF says:

            Or has Lee Clark got it wrong and he is the one that ought to be gone? Questions should be asked as to the reasons our top scorer is not played – don’t you think??

          • almajir says:

            I’m sorry, but I’m with Clark on this one.

          • AF says:

            I’m with whatever it takes to get goals, decent results and prevent a relegation battle.

          • almajir says:

            Right now, that isn’t Marlon King for us.

            Before Tony asks, yes there are reasons I cannot talk about. Sorry.

          • AF says:

            And in the meantime, even after 3 games, we don’t look like scoring goals and are in a relegation fight. Unless something changes?

  • jay galvin says:

    Having spent many years in the pub trade what is happenig at St Andrews is akin to the demise of our pubs. If you offer an inferior experience you will lose your client base and they will find other sources of entertainment and once they break their habit they rarely return.
    In the modern age with our comfortable homes, sky,internet links, and numerous forms of other entertainment, on a cold winters day a mediocre championship match costing £30 has little appeal.
    I speak as a long term season ticket holder even I am having to drag myself to the game and like yesterday sit and watch a very poor first half and about 20 mins of decent play from blues.
    the rest of the time I just sat there depressed just like everyone else, just look around at their faces this is an inferior experience to sitting at home watching a 5-30 kick off man u v swansea with a can of cold beer and saved yourself £30.

  • AF says:

    I’m not sure apathy is the right word, despair and depression with the current situation is more apt. Agreed a new owner can’t set the club alight on their own and it needs fans back up but the situation will only get worse without change.

  • Alex T says:

    I don’t think it is a catch 22 situation Al… if a new owner comes in and shows a sustained good attitude towards the club and fans (and I don’t necessarily mean putting their hands in their pockets all the time), performances will improve and fans will return.

    The thing is, it won’t happen over night. We have seen too many false dawns for 10k fans to return just because a new owner has been found. We need to see proof that whoever is running us has the best interest of the club heart. And unless King Trev buys us, that will take time.

    BTW, to make a bit of atmosphere, how about miking up the areas of the ground where there is loud singing and feeding it into the speakers around the ground. That will encourage people in quiet areas of the ground to sing up….. as there is nothing worse than trying to sing your heart out when all you can hear is silence. .. just a thought ;-)

    • almajir says:

      I think Arsenal tried that one back at Highbury when they were rebuilding the clock end and got lambasted for it.

      • Ali Duncan says:

        I can go further than that…they started a section in the North Bank called the singing section an had song leaders to start the chants wearing bibs to identify them. A dark and crazy idea which pleasingly it didn’t take off.

  • mark says:

    Dan – imagine if you feel like stepping on eggs shells.Sullivan and gold brothers, pp carson……….must think the same catch 22.

  • Bluenosesol says:

    I think that sometimes we are looking for complicated answers to glaringly obvious situations. I can recall when Newcastle had miniscule crowds under the management of Jim Smith. The Geordies had deserted the club in droves. We keep on asking why the atmosphere is so poor and why St Andrews is no longer an intimidating cauldron of noise. Its because NO ONE IS THERE !! The board are sh*te, the squad is probably not good enough, the cupboard is bare and the finances are sparse. The noise and atmosphere is generated by volumous support. The answer is to win more games and to challenge for promotion, this will get the gates up and generate the atmosphere we all long for. Dont tell me it is easier said than doene, because I know that, but it doesnt change anything. Until we challenge for promotion there will not be any atmosphere, despite trumpets, drums, VooVoozelas or nuclear explosions!! Keep the Faith and Keep Right On!!

    • chris says:

      I don’t even think we have to challenge for promotion, we need new owners, then hope and very good home form.
      If we had home form like last year’s away record that would help.
      Though, where is the hope, there is none, selling our future young players for peanuts is the road to ruin.
      We all know, that if any one player (including those signed this summer) plays well between now and December he will be sold in January, so it’s one step forward and two back.
      We know what is coming before it even happens.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I have to agree with most posters… that a successful team brings in the punters.. which in turn creates an atmosphere.

    As Scoobers said earlier, “Pannu and Yeung have given fans many reasons not to go”…. but, by the same token, Lee Clark and the squad are trying their damndest to give fans many reasons TO go. The problem is, they’re getting no help whatsoever from their employers… so, the only ones left to help them, are the fans, whose support, vocally and in numbers, must be worth it’s weight in gold to the players. Just a thought.

  • kwill105 says:

    Just a quick note on your comment about Paul gaining undue preference on tickets, this has been going on for years (I do not mean with Paul). You only have to know the right people commonly found in the local’s by the ground (most notably the one just closed after yesterdays game). Being married to one of those who used to be one of those ‘right people’ it is unfortunately how things work. Not unique to our club. I have not renewed my 5 ST’s this year, mainly because I’m in Barbados for the majority of this season, but hopefully be back in Jan where I will get half-year one’s. Reading LC’s comments about the way games have gone, it does seem like groundhog day…. Agree with your comment re Paul having the clubs best interests though at heart, unfortunately you are damned if you do, damned if you don’t, especially in today’s social media world. Anyway, off to the beach and KRO!

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Last week, it was all euphoria when we beat Yeovil. Now, we’ve been beaten narrowly 1-0. Yet fans are reacting like after the Barnsley fiasco. It’s nothing like that.. not even close. In the 2 home league games, we’ve been a whisker away from winning.

    Last season, the fans’ reaction at home games had the players running scared half the time, obviously preferring to play away from home. Now that was with mostly experienced players.

    How much more daunting must it be for these new players, half, from lower leagues, half who are just young kids. They have to know about last season and how the fans reacted, so, as I said in the last blog, they may be getting a bit of stage-fright. We’re all disappointed when we lose, but it doesn’t take much to dishearten young players, when they’re trying to do their best. Applause and cheers will have a more positive affect on the players than boos and jeers. Give ’em a break.

  • Art Watson says:

    Sorry to say “the Blues supppporters are extremely appathetic and apart from not attending the games show little willingness to protest against the current regime.”They seem to accept the status quo without putting up a fight.As you know I was willing to set up a petition to send to the HK media in the hope that this line of action would embarrass the current owners.I only received support from 4 posters on OP which was very disappointing.

    If success is the only motivation for improved gates and a better atmosphere we are in for a very long wait.Our strength is in our numbers but sadly and understandably many supporters have just switched off and just can’t be bothered to get involved and Clark despite his commitment is not the man to take this team forward.

    It’s a recipe for disaster!
    ,

  • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:

    There is probably several differing reasons we are seeing some of the issues currently being experienced down at St Andrews. Those reasons are intertwined and crossover, so we cannot clearly define a single factor for what is causing the malaise and falling attendances. Most of us can more than likely cite several folk that we know that are no longer attending regularly or if at all, and others who no longer seem to have the same passion. The owners, the off-field difficulties, the level of football, the expectations, other interests and commitments – they all combine to create the current situation and people will pick and choose their games. We’ll always have a “hardcore Blue” following but for the rest, well we’ll have to get used to seeing them once in a while. It is good to see more youngsters making an effort to support their local club and team, and hopefully this will pay dividends in the future. But I would also add that their is a fair number in the ranks with unrealistic expectations and who are more vocal than they ought to be. We all know and appreciate the predicament we are in but dividing ourselves into “them” and “us” camps is not going to help the resolve the situation anytime soon.

  • Chris says:

    It is somewhat like being a shop steward for a large company you get to close to the managment and you are looking after No1…. Don’t do enough and you are a waste of space with every member criticizing every move you do….F… that both are a thank less job…..

  • peter bates says:

    While marlon king is still at the club we are still paying him so lee clark should play him or is he that stubborn he can say as many times he likes but there has been a fallout between them but sometimes you have to eat humble pie lee clark must do right for the club and if he is still at blues and nobody is scoring he must play king

    • chris says:

      BUT, he’s leaving so why have a player which will be gone in 12 days time then we’d have to play Novak and Green then who would have had less games and would be going through the scenario of bedding in then instead of now.
      I understand what your saying but it is only delaying the situation and he still may not have scored if the right chances aren’t being created.
      IF, he is still there afterAugust that may change, but if he wants to leave he may go on loan elsewhere in September anyway.

  • Mike says:

    I admire all the blues fans who , dispite the current useless owners etc are still putting money into Yeungs and Pannus pockets !!
    Please can ANY fan who WANTS the current owners to stay put, as they are doing a good job,
    please put your hands up !!
    To me……as a fan of 50+ years and a season ticket holder for 45 of those years, I will NEVER ,ever give Yeung and Pannu A SINGLE PENNY as they are using us as a personal bank account for their own benefit !!
    We have NOT spent a penny on a player in 3 years ,and inspite of taking in 10 million in sales in the last few weeks , we CANNOT afford to pay swindon 250k for caddis !!
    Any player woth a few bob is sold immediatly and replaced with free transfers and non entitys !!
    No disrespect to any of the players that we have BUT they will ( due to there lack of skill etc) get us relegated without a doubt. I feel sorry for Clark as i,m sure he would do well with REAL players to work with!!
    I SAY TO YEUNG AND PANNU NOW……….GET OUT !! YOU HAVE NO AMBITION, NO INTEREST OR ANY INTENTION OF US TRYING TO BE SUCCESFUL!!
    YOU ARE ROBBING THE CLUB ,RIGHT LEFT AND CENTRE AND ALSO ENJOYING DOING SO !!
    If we get relegated this season then it would be a blessing in disguise as we are going NOWHERE withe these idiots in charge.
    Starve these morons out and make the club worthless ( which at the present time is nearly where we are at !) by NOT buying tickets, mechandise etc etc !!
    I realise some people wont agree with me BUT what other alternative is there, IFF we want people running the club who CARE for us ????
    Unless of course i,m wrong and the current fans WANT Yeung and Pannu in charge!! HANDS UP WHO WANTS THEM !!!!

    • almajir says:

      FYI, We paid money for Ibanez, Elliott and Ambrose in the last two years. We paid 3.5mil for Curtis Davies in January 2011 (which is 2.5 years ago)

      In the interests of accuracy.

      • MIKE says:

        Ok so we bought davies 2.5 years ago !! since then we have sold players including davies for close on 60million !! PLUS we have had 3 years of Parachute payments!! which total about another 40 mill or so !! WHERE HAS THE MONEY GONE !!
        AMBROSE WAS A FREE TRANSFER , AS EVERYONE ELSE HAS BEEN SINCE WE WERE RELEGATED !!
        You seem to be the one with the facts and figures, so may i ask you where all the money has gone and who we have PA|ID money for ( proper transfer fees etc !!) since we were relegated ?? I feel this question will remain unanswered as NO ONE has been paid for !! Yeung &Co bought Davies and Gardner only with Zicic also.

        comment edited – as said before, don’t use the word “crooks” – next time I’ll delete your comment summarily. Capisce?

        • almajir says:

          Mike, I’ve posted this over and over again.

          Two words.

          PLAYER WAGES.

          The money has gone to player wages.

          The year we went down, 95p of every £1 the club took in revenue – that’s turnover, not profit – was paid to the players.
          The year after, it was 65p.
          Last year it will be close to 60p-65p.

          It’s not rocket science.

          I mean, do you think free transfers don’t get paid? Do you think loan players don’t get paid? You do know we pay loan fees to loan players don’t you?
          Also, Ambrose cost £250k.

    • Art Watson says:

      Mike,

      Beautifully put and in my opinion you are spot on.

      I know Dan disagrees but starving these morons is the only way forward and frankly judging by yesterday’s attendance it won’t be long before we see gates of 10’000.

      • Alex T says:

        I am in agreement wholeheartedly! Although I may not be able to resist going to a couple of games, I will not pay for another season ticket whilst those jokrrs are in charge

    • Peter says:

      Great mike. You say eying wont support the club, so neither will you. Great support in making a deliberate choice to follow suit.

  • John says:

    Hi Almajir’

    I agree completely with your thoughts,unfortunately football fans as a whole
    have that fickle and suspicious nature.
    Hopefully in the not too distant future,we may see a change of ownership which,
    fingers crossed will improve things at Blues.

  • Oby says:

    Hi Dan,

    Just a question mate,….Is the reason you cant say whats gone on with King and Clark because a tribunal hearing ?

  • Tony says:

    Dan cant say about the situation regarding King just as he couldnt say with Zigic and Fahey but he does say King will never play for Clark again.
    Conclusion? hes had a fallout with Clark( a lot of people appear to fall out with Mr Clark)
    Well one more time, King,and Fahey are and were very good players of much more use to Birmingham CitY FC than is Clark I strongly suspect the fault lies with the pig headed geordie and his comic assistants.
    One day this will all be over Pannu and Yeung will be gone as will this ridiculous excuse for a manager.
    Regarding King, Dan says he does not want to play for us, what the hell does that mean? does it mean he refuses to play?if so stop his wages is he fit is he training? or just getting fat, I would have him in every day doing double sessions, he would not be allowed to take the piss out of the club as he is doing.

    • AF says:

      I think the answer should lie with play King, achieve some results and mid table obscurity or a certaon relegation battle?? Little wonder there is apathy, desperation or whatever you want to call it?

      • almajir says:

        Or you could accept hes not going to play for us and move on.

        Seriously.

        • AF says:

          I agree about moving on if there is an adequate replacement. There isn’t though.

          • almajir says:

            You are assuming that there is a choice, there is not.

            If you thought this year was going to be anything more than a scrap for survival you’re in for a lot more pain, I’m afraid.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            I’ve always been a fan of King and always will be… but if he’s leaving, he’s leaving. I’ll get over it quickly, just like all the others.

          • AF says:

            There are choices though! There are choices whether to play your most prolific goalscorer, there are choices whether to play Chris Burke, there are choices whether to play an attacking line up or 3-5-2, there are choices whether to play a midfield player (Shinnie) upfront. There are choices whether our more successful 4-5-1 from last season should be adopted, there are choices if Reilly,Hancox etc give better options.

          • chris says:

            as Dan says he’s leaving, it will come out later why, from the grapevine talk the manager has no choice.

    • Peter says:

      Well tong you clearly should be running the club, as everyone else is useless except king, sorry you love child!

    • Gibbsy says:

      I have just had a horrible thought, Zigic does not have sick pay in his contract, so is on SSP, while he has ‘back problems’ saving us his wages each week.

      Not likely, but I am cynical enough to have it cross my mind!

  • sappy sad says:

    ………….there is nothing blues fans need more than a buyer of the club who wants success ..and is willing to put money into the club …….and see p.p….and c.y.walking out of st. Andrews for the last time…….the relief from blues fans will be more powerful than oliver hardy sitting on a whoopee cushion….we must hold on to the thought though that the new year could bring this about ….COME ON CUT YOURSELVES ABOVE THIS PAIR….this club needs you….kro

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I’d be interested to see what effect PP and CY leaving will actually have at the very next game. Would fans turn up in droves to celebrate? I wonder.

  • DB_91 says:

    Kiwi-John <3's the Mayor,

  • Blue Steve says:

    3-5-2 is not really a great formation for home games with the current squad in my opinion. I expect we will continue to have generally negative results at home for the rest of the season if we persist with these tactics. I had no illusions how this season would go. Safety would be a great result. Our attacking options are very limited. I’d like to see Marlon gone and perhaps a young loan striker from the come in. I’m not sure we have the cash though..

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I’m of the same opinion. Use 3-5-2 only against certain opposition when it’s needed. At home, it has to be an attacking formation… 4-4-2 is still my favourite, but I’m ok with 4-5-1/4-3-3 too.

      I think Lee Clark is desperate to get shut of King, because he may have a striker on hold waiting to come in once someone leaves… whether that’s a freebie or a season loan.

  • Retired&Weary says:

    I’m not convinced that King would make a difference. We’ve played 2 of the better football teams at home. We didn’t create many chances, neither did the opposition. Watford won with a very well worked goal, Brighton took advantage when we lost our shape after Burke came on. What we need is a bit more luck in front of goal – hit the bar twice yesterday.
    I say don’t panic yet. We’ve got the likes of Zigic (hopefully) & Spector to come back. In the meantime don’t crucify Novak, etc. give them time.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I have a feeling Clark always intended to bring another striker in. Unfortunately, the plans have been kyboshed a bit with neither King nor Lovenkrands leaving yet.

    The transfer window will be shut in a few weeks, but there’s still the loan system. I’m sure we can squeeze another one in?

  • mark says:

    sappy- it quite simple really there certain fans who will simply never be happy fact……………me i am bloody enjoying the football, goals will come, the facts are pp and carson are still here it annoys the living sh*t out them, Clark still here another annoying person, Marlon not playing -lets blame Clark, coaching staff cr+p, bovil too cold, the weather not hot enough, cannot wait for it to snow………and the list goes on and on……….
    hang- on minute we suddenly get to wembley thousands come out the wood work…………..amazing……

  • AM says:

    Leave King out thats fine but Novak is not the answer. I hope i eat humble pie on this but in our 3 home games this season he has been absolute garbage.Cant comment on yeovil as i didnt go but surely there are better options than this. Couldnt understand Clatks sub yesterday either taking off shinnie and allan and keeping novak on.Never thought i would say this but cant wait for Ziggy to be fit

    • Ali Duncan says:

      Agreed. Novak, IMO, is not a championship standard player. I’ve seen all three home games and I can’t see how he’ll improve.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    From what I’ve read in different articles and newspapers, Novak has been working his goolies off and has been unlucky. If his shot had gone in yesterday, instead of hitting the bar, no one would be saying a word. I’m positive Novak will come good. It’s all about confidence with strikers.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Attendances will only increase if performances and more importantly results improve.
    It is basic human behavioural psychology that a person will only do an action if he/she gets a positive consequence in doing it. A person getting a negative consequence will not repeat that action.
    In other words we feel great if Blues win (positive consequence) and we feel sad if Blues lose (negative consequence).
    If we could guarantee a Blues victory every home game attendances would rocket.
    There are other negative consequences other than poor results…..cost of travel, food, ease of parking etc.
    The only positive consequence of going to St.Andrews is the feel good factor after a win. With wins few and far between attendances will remain static at best.

  • tony says:

    Surely even the board recognized that ticket sales were going to be down this season.Then they must have expected the pay on the day fans to be less also.Personally i would have thought its better to have 20k fans at half price than 10k at current prices.The free under 10’s is a good idea but distorts the amount of season ticket sales that we actually had and has been said earlier you need fans to create an atmosphere not empty seats.
    As for the current team then its lucky for clark that he has a cast iron excuse i.e the board because tactically i don’t think he’s improved since the day he joined the club.Last season he sort of stumbled upon a decent team and formation more by luck than judgement.Now he abandons that to play 3 5 2 which with the current squad is ludicrous .We all want a new board and i for one hope they bring in a better manager if and when that day finally arrives because clark is clueless.

    • almajir says:

      Tony

      Thing is half price tickets doesn’t equate to double the fans – look at the Carling Cup prices and attendances.

    • chris says:

      Based on last season with an average crowd of 16700 i’d guess the average price was £25 if you knocked £10 off that you’d need another 4800 fans to turn up to just get to the same income.
      Take out 9500 season ticket holders (a guess) last season that leaves 7200 paying customers so to nearly double that and add another 4800 fans would be difficult.
      It wouldn’t happen as Dan demonstrates with the League Cup.
      They will / would rather take advantage / rip off the average crowd, rather than gamble on increasing numbers throught the turnstiles.

  • Mike France says:

    Don’t know if I have missed something! but are we still paying Kings wages? If we are, surely he should be playing. Don’t know how much he gets, but for doing nothing, can I put my name down?

  • AF says:

    0P the strength of feeling shows that apathy is the wrong word. Bewilderment, disappointment and leading to dislilusioned is probably the more apt?

    • almajir says:

      Amongst the ten to twenty people who commented on this site.

      Big stretch to extrapolate that to the entire fanbase.

      • AF says:

        There’s a fine line between apathy which suggests a state of not caring, compared with disillusioned which suggests caring passionately but having almost given up?

        • almajir says:

          And I’d suggesting that 10,000 people plus feel the same way based on what 10-20people have written on a website is a huge jump.

          Seriously, from what I can gather, most people don’t care. Don’t care about the owners, don’t care about Clark, don’t care about what’s posted on the internet. If people cared, there would be mass protests or something that showed they did – most don’t.

          Again, a fact of life.

          • AF says:

            I think people care, but don’t feel as if they can make a difference on their own. They need something to unite behind – a belief or a figurehead.

          • almajir says:

            I’ll say to you what I say to anyone else with your beliefs – nothing stopping you from leading it mate.

          • AF says:

            I run my own business, working long hours and have a young family too. In effect I’d love to offer my skills to The Trust and even have a leading part but apart from weekends simply have no more hours in the day.

  • joking says:

    Question to all who insist that King is the answer, why hasn’t he been snapped up yet by any of our competitors? If we can get rid of King, Loverman & Ambrose perhaps with the wages we save we might be able to get a loan striker.
    I can only speak for myself on why I hadn’t attended a match since the heady Euro nights, chemo and radio therapy and terminal lung cancer have taken their toll. I went to my first game since then on Saturday and you could see the effort given by the players and in some cases their skills, they did play some nice football in patches in the second half and were unlucky not to score. Brighton managed to score due to our inexperience.

  • Tony says:

    Seems many of you missed Dans answer to a comment earlier today, people think when King finally does leave we will be able to bring in another striker, Dan seems to suggest that we will not because we have no money. Well if thats is the case we may as well throw the towel in now.

  • Tony says:

    Dan why am I having to fillin my details every time i post on here are you trying to get rid of me? lol

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    I came into this season prepared to give LC a chance because of the financial constraints he’s under.

    After Brighton all I can say is I hope he and his assistant are good enough to bring his signing to this level, excluding Randolph, Burn and Allan who are clearly good enough

  • EveshamBlue says:

    I think the team will come good in time. We are still in August folks! However, not entirely sure why LC has changed formation when the back end of last season we had found a winning formation?

    Why try to copy Hull last year?

    As for the King argument. What happens if they cant move him on due to wages? Do you play him then if he is still here when the window is shut? Fact is he is our top goalscorer of the last 2 years.

    LC did a backward turn over Zigic after all.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I think that’s a significant point. We’re trying to play more like Hull than Watford. For one, our ‘wingbacks,’ Eardley and Ferguson, aren’t as good as Watford’s. And two, as far as I’m aware, (I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong) not one Hull player reached double figures for goals. Look where Hull are now and lokk at where Watford are. I for one don’t believe Watford will finish in the top 2.

      It’s obvious there’s more to the King situation, as there was with the Fahey one. But for obvious reasons, the details have to remain private, at least for now. That’s respecting all parties. As with Fahey, if there was something bad between him and Lee Clark, Fahey would have divulged it by now. I’m sure the King details will surface one day. He’s going, going and almost gone. Let’s get over it now.

      *nb: Lee Clark didn’t do a U-turn on Zigic. He dropped him for a very good reason and showed he’s a fair bloke by bringing Zigic back in when he towed the line and put in the effort his team mates did.

      And… breathe. :-)

      • EveshamBlue says:

        From where I am sitting King, Mullins,Ambrose, Loverkrands are not exactly flying out the door? We tried to offload Zigic many times. Fact is wages may deter potential suitors. We may be stuck with them until the end of the season…

        Still think King will go as goalscorers are worth the gamble. Sorry but I wont rain on King’s parade. He did fine service whilst he was here. My point is IF he is still here then why not play him? Sick Note and Mullins were given a chance

        • StaffsBlue says:

          No arguments from me about playing King (everyone knows I’m a fan)… but, if, as has already been said, he is definitely going (and wants to go) we all need to wave goodbye, thank him for his (significant) services.. and get behind the team.

    • BhamCityJulian says:

      We’re not trying to emulate HCTFC but FCB following LC’s visit there

  • Always a Blue says:

    People need to chill,

    We could of beaten Watford and got a point yesterday,

    Would people be then saying we are play off material?
    This would be as silly as saying we are going down after 3 games.

    Take stock after ten games after all we have hit the woodwork three times at both home matches
    So it could go either way

  • Always a Blue says:

    People need to chill,

    We could of beaten Watford and got a point yesterday,

    Would people be then saying we are play off material?
    This would be as silly as saying we are going down after 3 games.

    Take stock after ten games after all we have hit the woodwork three times at both home matches
    So it could go either way

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Agreed. I think we have to give this squad at least 10 games. I think it could be October before we start to see a fully-gelled side.

  • sutton apex says:

    managers come and go, boards come and go – only one constant- BCFC !! Good luck to forza and any other blues who are passionate fans, i dont go as often as i did 20 years ago – but i will always follow the blues.

  • WalmleySteve says:

    This point about apathy is an interesting one. I (and the rest of my family) will be back down St Andrews as soon as Pannu and Yeung have gone – simples. But what’s surprised me is the lack of any kind of protest of any sort down there. And Dan, I know you’ll say that there’s no point as nobody in Hong Kong is listening, I’m not so sure. If the fans made it absolutely clear that Pannu and Yeung are not wanted through protests during and after matches, and dare I say it, the odd “Yeung out” bedsheet then I think it would concentrate their minds and they would be more inclined to sell. Instead, a surprising number of fans seem willing to suck up anything, even the disgraceful sale of Redmond for peanuts. We can knock them, but you only have to look at the protests by Villa fans against McLeish and Wolves fans against the way their club was being run to see that it does have an effect and owners are forced to act.

    • almajir says:

      Honestly Steve, I do not believe it would make one iota of difference. These people will sell when they want, to who they want. We don’t come into the equation.

      • Art Watson says:

        Sorry Dan I have to disagree and I think Steve is right but sadly I don’t think the supporters care either.The club is spiralling towards the lower divisions.

        • almajir says:

          Honestly Art, I don’t think that’s the case at all.

          Pannu knows that he is hated – he cares not.

          I think Carson has bigger things on his mind than what we think.

          It’s galling, but it’s the truth.

          • Art Watson says:

            Dan,

            I respect your opinion and agree that PP couldn’t careless and this is why we have to put him under pressure to sell.Boycotting the home games/stop the purchase of commercial goods /public protests and setting up an organised campaign should focus PP’s mind.

            At the moment he is pissing up our backs while we continue to roll over by doing nothing.

            I’m also surprised and disappointed at the lack of Interest shown by the fans but something needs to done quickly to stop the demise of our great club.

          • almajir says:

            How do you propose putting him under pressure though?

            That’s th $64,000 question mate – and as you’ve seen for yourself, apathy reigns supreme.

            In the meantime, I cannot agree with you – the club needs us, the team needs our support. That’s why we’re called “supporters”.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            If people stop going, or stop buying merchandise, the shortfall will be made up with player sales. I don’t see what part of that people don’t understand. If fans take away part of the income, then it’s no good moaning when they sell the Redmond’s and Butlands to create the finance to keep the club going. You won’t force them out, they’ll go when they’re good and ready.

        • Geoff Smith says:

          WalmleySteve is surely correct. I was a St Andrew’s regular for 36 years until my health started to go. I ain’t up to getting out much anymore but in the late 1970s I can remember a BCFC protest group called The Blue Revolution coming together to mobilise opposition to the way the then-chairman Keith Coombs and his fellow directors were running the club.

          There were protest bedsheets on the Kop and Tilton Road terraces then and also at least one public meeting of Blues fans in the old Town Hall (when it held nearly 2,000). The hall was full to capacity (where a certain former broadcaster called Tony Butler was nearly lynched). There were hundreds more supporters trying to get in to the already overflowing building to support calls for change at the club.

          That was all done without the benefit of the internet and other types of modern-day social networking. Blues fans who comment on this and other sites have their fingers very much on the pulse so how can the mood be so different now?

          • StaffsBlue says:

            The difference being, the owners now, live thousands of miles away in Hong Kong and very rarely show their faces in Brum, let alone St Andrews. Plus, they couldn’t give a toss how many protests we have… they can’t see them.

          • Geoff Smith says:

            Fair point about the thousands of miles, StaffsBlue. But Lerner at that lot across the city is nearly always in the USA (one of the reasons O’Neill resigned because he was frustated at the lack of direct contact). However, B6ers must have known where Lerner and his associates were holed up and they still held a protest against the appointment of McLeish.

            And surely we can agree there is no way that lot could be said to be more passionate about their club than Blues fans are of ours.

          • almajir says:

            Remind me again how much notice Lerner took of that protest, and how long after it he sacked McLeish?

          • chas says:

            and one (or more) of the buggers pinched my Car .

  • andy says:

    In my opinion, Birmingham are playing well, all that’s been missing is the killer ball in front of goal. Its a new team, a young team, and the play and passing is good, its just that killer instinct in front of goal.

    • BhamCityJulian says:

      Your watching different games from me. We’re riddled with unforced error at full back and in midfield. Second to the ball too many times, misplaced passes, terrible crossing, poor positioning by yhe strikers and no hold up play

      They might gell in time but technically they need to improve too

      • StaffsBlue says:

        The errors at full back are being caused mainly by the 3-5-2. It means the ‘wing backs’ are often-caught in two-minds/no-man’s-land. As for the midfield, as I’ve said often enough, we need a proper defensive midfielder/enforcer.. someone who knows the job… who can break up opposition play and lay the ball off simple to the ball players (a la David Batty.) The problem with us, is we have too many ball players and no one who is defensive minded… a case of too many indians and no chief. Just my opinion of course.

  • Peter says:

    The word apathy does not sit well with some as it is critical. BUT it is fair, even is people want to use other words like disappointed, disillusioned, etc. can’t be arsed is apt for many, and excuses are a plenty.

  • Roy Smith says:

    Rooney wants to leave Man Ure but they played him and he created a goal. King wants to leave Blues we don’t play him and we don’t score. If we are paying him he should play, the one or two points he might help get us could keep us up.

    • Pete says:

      The point being is that Man Utd WANT TO KEEP Rooney, and Blues DO NOT wish to keep King. Can the fans not just get over the fact that there has been something gone on which means King will not play again.

      Blues have got Zigic to come back, othr players are finding their feet. No need to panic. Anyone thinking we were going to be anything but midtable towards bottom half were a little unealistic in my opinion.

      • StaffsBlue says:

        In the BM today: “Marlon King is not under consideration while he talks to other clubs about a free transfer. Clark and King have both agreed to a parting of the ways and a settlement package was agreed weeks ago.” Seems clear enough to me.

        Also, Zigic’s return is expected around mid-September. Akwase Asante has been recalled from loan at Shrewsbury.

  • dave mann says:

    we didnt play that well saturday, the formation needs changeing and changeing NOW.
    4-4-2 or 4-3-3 or 4-5-1, we cant use eardley and ferguson as wing backs its not working.
    we need a right back in eardley or packwood, hancox or murphy at left back and play
    burke right mid and ferguson left mid, thats the change we need to make asap, thats
    where its going wrong and it needs adressing before leicester other wise it might get
    just a tad worse if we dont.KRO.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      My team for Leicester? Controversial I know, but…

      Randolph

      Eardley Bartley Burn Hancox

      Adeyemi Robinson

      Burke Allan Ferguson

      Green

      • StaffsBlue says:

        In the Paul Robinson webchat on bcfc.com today (21 Aug) Robbo was asked which position would he prefer if he wasn’t a defender. His answer?

        Paul Robinson: sitting midfield player

        So maybe I’m not as crazy as I seem. :-)

  • Geoff Smith says:

    Almajir. I greatly respect your hard work and ongoing dedication in providing the professionally set out site which clearly OP is. However, I believe you have drawn the wrong conclusions here re protests.

    • almajir says:

      As I have said before to other people on this article… nothing stopping you from leading these protests Geoff.

      • Geoff Smith says:

        If you haven’t already done so, check out what I said in an earlier posting (i.e 7:52 this morning). People don’t ask for their health to fail.

        • almajir says:

          That’s fair enough Geoff – but everyone else has an excuse too. A business to run, families to look after, work to do etc etc. I’m not saying that they’re not valid – not at all – what I do think it demonstrates though is how low priority Blues are. People just don’t care enough to “do something” because they have more important things to worry about. It’s the way it is.

          • Geoff Smith says:

            I respect those courteous remarks. I would like to float the following question with particular reference to Art Watson and WalmleySteve. How about considering the logistics of setting up an online petition where we could liaise online?

            I am prepared to give my e-mail address to Almajir and let him pass it on to Art and WalmleySteve with a view to at least discussing how to set up an e-petition. My computer/IT skills ain’t great but, if there are a couple of like-minded people out there willing to have a go, is it not worth a try?

          • almajir says:

            I have no problems passing on email addresses etc.

            If you need mine – almajir@oftenpartisan.co.uk

  • Geoff Smith says:

    Thanks.

    I’d firstly like to see if anybody might respond on this site and take it from there.

    • WalmleySteve says:

      I have to admit Geoff that I’m not convinced about e-petitions etc. I’m not banging the drum for protests as such, although I do think that if Yeung and Pannu saw that bedsheets, placards or whatever were being held up at every home game calling for them to sell-up and there were protests during and after games I think it would be embarassing for them and would make them more inclined to deal with the sale with a little more urgency at least. My real point though was that I’m surprised that so many fans seem so willing to put up with whatever Pannu does and simply shrug their shoulders and say, “well this is just part and parcel of being a Blues fan, weren’t you here when Wheldon was around?”, which comes back to Dan’s general point about higher levels of apathy I suppose. I personally am so incensed at the way Pannu and BIHL have run the club that I simply cannot put a single penny into it until they’re gone. It’s not apathy, it’s downright anger. Many people will say, “well that’s not helping the team”, but in my view it will in the long-term if it hastens the departure of the current owners.

  • Geoff Smith says:

    WalmleySteve.

    Thanks for replying.

    I was there even further back than Wheldon (as far back as the Coombs family). I alluded to it in the comment I posted at 7:52 this morning.

    Many thousands of Blues fans must surely share your anger so why is it not organised as it was back in the late 1970s?

    I just tried to offer to something with my limitations of getting about these days (e-petition was something Art Watson suggested). I’ll wait and see if Art replies but the only other thing I can think of is to ask the committee which runs Blues Trust what their next steps are.

  • bcfcjv says:

    it was my first game this season against Brighton. i never went down once last season due to work. I couldn’t believe how much the atmosphere had changed at the ground. we was out sung most of the game by Brighton’s contingent, i do feel that the crowd can win us a game especially attacking the tilton. We need an exciting player or two to lift the crowd which i didnt see at all against Brighton until koby arthur came on. It actually made me feel annoyed, ive always enjoyed away games more and i think until we have players who show us that fight and willing to have a go no matter how good you are its the hard work and passion that lifts the crowd. Its goig to be tough but we need to get behind the team. id rather have an attendance of 15,000 cheering us on and being the 12th man than 29,000 on a sponsored silence


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