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Scottish Premiership 22/23 season start

Stand Free!

Rotten to the very core


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That was the headline on Alex Martin's piece in the P & J this morning.

 

Chris Chrighton's Fans' View headline was "Culture of inertia reflected in the team".

 

The Readers have their say section headline was "Supporters are venting their anger at the wrong men".

 

The penny has finally dropped but by failing to identify the trendline and it's obvious consequences early enough this has resulted in lost opportunities to influence the board. You and I now have the club we deserve. The apathy that had set in and is now all consuming was engineered. Arguments for or against McGhee or exhaustive discussions about the merits or otherwise of Calderwood detracted from the real issues facing AFC, further evidence that this is now the club that the fans deserve. 

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Who, exactly,  hasn't known for years that the club is a fucking shambles from top to bottom?

 

People have wanted Milne out for years. Nothing has changed on that score, recent events have only made that more pertinent.  But what do we do? Hostile takeover?  There aren't many options open to us other than that unless we were to approach someone with the means to buy the appropriate number of shares to gain control of the club. And let's face it, if someone was of the inclination to do that, it is more than likely they would have done so before now.

 

Milne is fully aware of how unpopular he is amongst the support, you only have to read his comments from yesterday to see that. He's not arsed about that. I would love the situation to change, but I'm not sure how it can without money, are you?

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The club has a £10M debt with a £30M planned new stadium to service, a lot of the £10M debt is due to be repaid within the next two years or restructured. I personally do not know anyone who wants to invest in Aberdeen FC to the extent that is required and lets not gloss this up, who in their right mind would want to take over Aberdeen FC except a fan with spare money. Any fan with money would have been involved by now and probably would have got involved when Milne and co were spunking loads on new players in the horrendous Aitken era.

 

The fans haven't got the team they deserved at all, the club is a disorganised mess no doubt about it however the people that have the team they deserve is not the "fans" but the "public" of Aberdeen, the population that sit in bars watching English Football instead of supporting their local football team. The very ones reading their P&J complaining about fans who go to matches voicing their fury on Tuesday not bothered that the reason we're so shit is that they sit on their backsides spending £20 a week in the pub instead of supporting the team they claim to support by actually attending.

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Exactly BB.

 

I personally do not blame the board for us getting knocked out of the Scottish Cup.  Blame lies squarely with McGhee and the players.  All this board stuff is the usual knee jerk shite we get after yet another humiliating cup exit (three in one season!!!).

 

The larger problems exist no matter what's happening on the park.  Anyone who doesn't realise this must have been living in cloud cuckoo land.  Milne is both the villian and the saviour in all this, and sadly there is nobody out there who wants to come in and invest or take over.  But nevermind, we're getting a nice shiney new Union Terrace Gardens thanks to Sir Ian Wood!

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http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/football/scotland/article7031535.ece

 

City of Aberdeen has fallen out of love with its club

Graham Spiers, Commentary

 

 

Every staging post in the decline of Aberdeen FC has been painful: the bitter defeats, poor attendances, the lack of funds. While Raith Rovers’ 1-0 win in the Active Nation Scottish Cup fifth-round replay on Tuesday night was a moment of joy for the Fifers — and no doubt for Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, — it represented another nail in the Aberdeen’s coffin.

 

There is growing evidence that this is a city highly disenchanted with its once proud football club. The local Press and Journal confirmed as much yesterday when it stated: “The Dons season has ended, and so too, perhaps, has much of the love affair between a city and its team.â€

 

For those who follow and admire the Scottish game, this remorseless disintegration of the “Dandy Dons†has been a pitiful story to observe. There were bitter recriminations across the city yesterday — indeed, across the whole Grampian region — at this latest embarrassment.

 

Stewart Milne, the colossally rich Aberdeen chairman, was again targeted for his perceived lack of investment in the club; Willie Miller, Aberdeen’s director of football, was being panned on various message boards for his role in the saga. And there is something extremely painful going on in Scotland’s footballing north-east when Miller, arguably Aberdeen’s greatest player, is trashed like this.

 

 

The defeat by Raith can only be added to Aberdeen’s grim toll of cup reverses at the hands of lower-league opponents in recent years. Queen’s Park, Queen of the South, Dunfermline Athletic, Dundee and now the little Kirkcaldy club have all plunged a knife into the Dons.

 

When one supporter allegedly spat at Mark McGhee, the manager, as he left his dugout at full-time on Tuesday, it summed up the whole despicable mess. As beyond the pale as this act was, it captured a club growing sick of themselves.

 

Is the city of Aberdeen giving up on its team? Over the decades attendances at Pittodrie have always been a cause for concern. Infamously, Alex Ferguson vehemently complained that, even when his team were closing in on both European and domestic honours in 1983, Pittodrie would still sometimes house only 17,000 for certain games — this from a north-east hinterland of almost 500,000.

 

Yet more recent attendances do suggest a local falling out of love with the club. On Tuesday only 8,129 were at Pittodrie, and 700 of those had travelled north from Kirkcaldy. Only 8,226 turned up to watch Aberdeen face Heart of Midlothian in the Scottish Cup last month, while crowds of 9,000 have not been unusual for league games this season.

 

And it is set to get worse, with the gag already doing the rounds that Aberdeen’s end-of-season party is to be held in the city’s Beach Ballroom tomorrow night.

 

Aberdeen supporters unleashed an outpouring of anger yesterday. “Second-rate board, second-rate team, and a support that tolerates an element among it which other great clubs never would,†one fan, Lawrence Fraser, said. Another, Ian Stewart, said: “The team is rubbish. I haven’t been a regular at Pittodrie since 1992 and I won’t be back until we have a team that is properly funded and with players of quality.†A third fan simply wrote: “It has been ten years of frustration and anger.â€

 

The question of a fresh investment in Aberdeen is one that will not go away. Milne’s personal wealth is put at in excess of £400 million, with his company, the Stewart Milne Group, having turned over between £300 million and £400 million of annual business in recent years.

 

Given such wealth, the recurring complaint against Milne by many Aberdeen fans is that he is downright stingy towards the club he owns, McGhee being regularly open about the sort of salary he can offer players — such as Jerel Ifil — is on a par with the third tier of English football.

 

Against this, Milne cannot simply throw his money around. In the past 18 months his group has recorded a £27 million loss, and 400 employees have had to be laid off during the recession.

 

The Milne argument is only one of many bitter disputes engulfing Aberdeen. McGhee, meanwhile, will soldier on, though his words yesterday were ominous.

 

“There seems to be a weak mentality at the club,†he said. “Tuesday was embarrassing and humiliating for the manner in which we were outfought by Raith.

 

“Something is obviously inherently wrong at the club and it is my job to try to fix it. Somehow, I need to try to bring players in who have the sort of mentality that would not allow a defeat like this to happen.â€

 

The obvious problem is, for the sort of players’ salaries that you will also find at Wycombe Wanderers, Stockport County and Carlisle United, where will McGhee find such bar-raising footballers for Aberdeen? It seems that this football club is in an inexorable downward spiral, with its own civic kith and kin at various points of giving up on it.

 

 

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