Monday, 17 October 2016

We must continue to Peppa the Regime...

The media fallout from the events on Saturday can leave no doubt that they were a resounding success. With press exposure worth in the region of £3-4 million and the fact that we were the main story in the sports section of "moments" on twitter,  we can be content with the reaction - our message is spreading.

Despite the day being a success and going to plan, there is no back patting. These days are neither enjoyable nor fun. The fact that I am actively campaigning against the club that I am supposed to love is an extremely strange feeling. I have to remind myself that actually I am not campaigning against the club but instead for it - for the future of it. The people put in place to protect the club are not doing an adequate job and it is up to us to do what we can to remove them from their positions.

The "pigs might fly" narrative is an important one. The running of the club since January 2014 has led from disaster to disaster - there is no way we can believe that they have "learned from their mistakes". We have to look at the evidence of the past 33 months and realise that the only future needed for Charlton to be successful again is one without this regime.

It only takes one to look at the continued appointment of Katrien Meire, whose PR gaffes continue, to realise that Duchatelet does not have the best interests of the club at heart. Her latest error is from the pre-match meeting with Bromley Addicks, who are said not to have given her an easy ride. When questioned about the sale of Diarra she reportedly responded by questioning his fitness and by saying that "he wasn't playing"; Alou Diarra scored that day against PSG...

Onto the protest itself, beginning with the march. Coventry fans can be proud of their contribution in a real act of defiance against those that are meant to govern our game - they really brought home the bacon (sorry). The camaraderie between two sets of fans that are supposed to be rivals for the day, in a battle for three points, show that the spirit of football clubs go far beyond what happens for 90 minutes. The match was interrupted again and Meire was said to be furious, asserting that this cannot continue - so expect more stringent measures from the club in regards to these protests. It's pleasing to be able to put the pressure on her in this way.

One of the most poignant moments to signify this fan unity (disregarding the march, of course) was during the second half. Coventry fans started a chant of "We want Roland out" which kick started a rousing edition of the chant by the home fans. Then, about a minute later the Valley faithful started their own chant - "We want Sisu out". It was a fabulous snippet that completely captured the spirit of the day.

Unsavoury scenes followed the final whistle. A fan was reportedly "thrown against a wall" by club hired security staff, who were not showing ID, for simply having a North Korea flag. This could not have caused a more marked contrast in PR terms for the club, in comparison to that of the fans, even if they had tried. The club face a backlash from the incident - they look like a club that attacks its own fans and the irony of the fact that the fan was carrying a North Korea flag when this happened cannot be lost on anyone. 

The "them and us" attitude that the day highlighted is deeply upsetting. You can be left in no doubt of the incompetence of those running the club when this level of discontent is shown at a club such as ours, where fan co-operation and assistance used to be such an integral part of the way it was run. I can't wait for this to be over. There is going to be one hell of a party when it is...

1 comment:

  1. Excellent piece, Joe. That's not my opinion but Daddy Pig's. He's an 'expert' on these things.