Lessons Blackpool FC Should Learn – Part One

Things Will Change :

This mantra has been repeated each season since 2009/10.  In May 2009 our esteemed chairman stated :

Quote:“It will absolutely change the club forever if we go up. It can’t fail to”

Well yes, Karl – things did change.  A fanbase that could be built upon and secured for a generation or more came and went.  Every park or playing field in the town was awash with kids in Tangerine shirts – they can now be counted on one’s fingers.  

We got some sprinklers – by Christ, the first time I saw them in action I knew we’d hit the big time.  

The “Permatemp” East Stand was built – I remember even watching the webcam feed as it went up however it seems the seating and some of the restricted views leave a lot to be desired.


Slight Problem Sitting In Allocated Seat

I dare say this was an improvement on what was in situ on the East side of the ground prior to promotion to The Premier League – the old affectionately named “Gene Kelly” stand, so called due to opposition fans “Singin In The Rain”.


Be Careful What You Say :

Say the wrong thing and you’ll be sued or at the very least threatened with legal action and be made to post a grovelling apology on fans’ message boards and social media.  There have been three instances so far, all of which appear to comprise the same template with merely the names of the apologist and amounts to be paid changed to suit the individual involved.  Whilst individuals and apparently one national newspaper have been targeted in this approach, it is not yet certain whether or not the owning family or their companies have taken any action against Channel 4 for their damning indictment by a forensic accountant.  At least one other case is currently going through court at this stage with an as yet unknown date for hearing – unless Mr Ragozzino can put me right on that score.

On the flip-side of this point is the fact the chairman’s son has made his own grovelling apology after questioning the integrity of an employee of a local casino and accusing him of leaving his position due to having “sticky fingers” – as my old nan used to say, “The apple never falls far from the tree” – which brings us nicely to my next point…

Text Messages Are Bad, MmmKaaay :

When engaging one’s paying customers always be careful on how you address them.   I have found that in general customers react angrily when being referred to as “Retards” and being advised to “Enjoy your special needs day out”.  Referring to any working person as “Just a (insert occupation here).  Enjoy your three weeks in Orlando” shows a level of contempt and implies their thoughts or feelings are irrelevant – after all, why on earth would any person who invests hard-earned cash and time be entitled to have an opinion on how the football club they support is run and what sort of peasant would have to save for a holiday in Orlando?  Certainly not the sort of peasant that the son of a multi-millionaire should have to lower themself to (Karl’s words in his Apology) and engage in any sort of meaningful conversation or debate with!

It is widely believed that Blackpool’s main sponsor- Wonga – whose deal was up for renewal, decided the deal would not be renewed after the Textgate story broke…  A payday loan company not wishing to be associated with the football club shows just how, for want of a better word, shabby Blackpool FC’s reputation now is.

Replace Like For Like :

In May 2014 the club announced the departure of long-standing secretary Matt Williams to Shrewsbury.  Williams had performed with distinction in his role and was viewed by many as the glue holding the administrative side of the club together and would often sit with fans at away games.

As a replacement for Williams the club announced the appointment of Chris Hough as club secretary effective from the day after Williams’ departure.

Hough had been made redundant from his previous post as club secretary at Crawley and in all fairness may have found the prospect of taking up a similar role at a Championship club a daunting one.  

A total of twelve signings were made in the fortnight prior to the opening league game of the season at Nottingham Forest, and after Blackpool were roundly beaten, it emerged that players had not been registered in time for the game and manager José Riga could only name four substitutes – two of whom were youth team scholars.

Hough did little to enhance his reputation when commenting on singer Rita Ora on a social media profile left open for public view insinuating that he would like her to perform a sex act upon him :

Lee Clark stated in a well publicised Interview,

“Once I was in the door, it was tougher than I had seen looking in. 

“A lot of little things that would normally make a club run smoothly made things very, very tough for us. We lost a kit man and he wasn’t replaced. There were issues with player registrations, travel, accommodation. 

“It is just about getting things done in a proper manner.

Perhaps Mr Hough wasn’t best suited to the job of kit-man, but for whatever reason, whether it be penny-pinching by those in charge of the money, or the inability to employ a suitable individual, such roles at a football club playing in the second tier of English football should never be performed by the club secretary.


To conclude,  I suggest that Blackpool did change in that glorious summer of 2009 but not for the better.   

Legal action against fans is only going to ever drive a deeper wedge between ownership and fans – any thought or possibility of reconciliation has long since gone.

Insult your paying customers at your peril – as Valeri Belokon stated “be careful when you spit on them, they will spit back and there are more of them”.

When employing a monkey – ensure the monkey is up to the job in the circus and don’t have him performing the job of ring-master.  You had a ring-master who fucked off and even took ticket office staff with him to a better run circus.


One thought on “Lessons Blackpool FC Should Learn – Part One

  1. Robertedward says:

    A Four part Trilogy??
    A well written part one. Oh so true. I particularly like the definition of the glue that held the admin together. What a disaster. I know that when MW was approached by Shrewsbury, when he told BFC chairman, the response was ” Go for it.” And…on his last day with the club, a staff outing to the races had been organised, and MW was left to lock up and put the keys in the letterbox. Nobody there to even go for a pint!! Says it all really. so petty and oh so sad.


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