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Record:Stewart Milne keeps Aberdeen running with his own cash as debts hit £12m


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http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/football/spl/2011/09/23/stewart-milne-keeps-aberdeen-running-with-his-own-cash-as-debts-hit-12m-86908-23439964/

 

IN CRISIS on the pitch - flirting with financial meltdown off it.

 

The latest in a long line of cup exits to a bunch of lower-league minnows is devastating enough for Pittodrie punters long used to suffering.

 

But chief executive Duncan Fraser last night laid bare the extent of Aberdeen's plight - and revealed only the support of Stewart Milne is keeping the club out of the administrator's clutches.

 

Chairman and building magnate Milne, often the target for frustrated fans, has had to give his personal guarantee to Dons' bankers as their debt has soared above £12million.

 

And with gates dropping more than 3000 below the break-even figure - meaning Aberdeen are losing around £60,000 at every home game - Milne has had to dip into his own pocket to keep the club going.

 

He even personally funded the signing of Rory Fallon after Craig Brown insisted the striker would turn their dismal season around.

 

And Fraser admitted the only way to entice Red Army deserters back is by putting a winning team on the park.

 

Asked whether Aberdeen could continue to sustain these losses, keep their bankers happy and source finance to build a new stadium, the Dons chief insisted: "There are other clubs in a helluva lot more trouble than Aberdeen but we are fortunate to have the backing we do from our major shareholder.

 

"That's the bottom line. Our guys have been pushing the boat out as much as they can.

 

"Stewart supports the club in terms of its overall operation while we live within our budget which is the highest in my time here.

 

"There are not a lot of people prepared to do that. It's a thankless task."

 

Milne has offered to step aside if a suitable buyer comes forward but interest so far is scarce.

 

Despite the latest cup debacle against East Fife, the Pittodrie board, after holding their own post-mortem on the costly loss, remain convinced Brown is the right man to turn the club around.

 

Fraser said: "Our belief we have the right men in charge won't be changed by one bad cup result.

 

"The meeting was about coming up with ways to help Craig and Archie Knox.

 

"Lots of ideas were kicked around and we hope they will prove beneficial.

 

"We appointed Craig and Archie because we needed the best experienced management team available to take us through a period of transition. Craig and Archie have worked tirelessly to lay the foundations for a more successful team.

 

"The defeat by East Fife is a massive setback and the manager has admitted that but no one at the club is trying to hide from their share of the responsibility.

 

"The result was totally unacceptable and the fact it was only the latest in a long line of poor cup results adds to the disappointment.

 

"But it is the first since Craig and Archie took over and they made it clear they are determined it won't happen again.

 

"Despite the League Cup defeat, progress has been made under Craig and Archie and most observers have praised them for the improvement and organisation shown on the pitch.

 

"They have also made signings over the last period and we have a far stronger squad than last season but that's why the result against East Fife was such a shock.

 

"Everything will now be aimed at improving our league results and giving Craig and Archie everything they need to fulfil their ambitions for our club.

 

"I don't think we should ever put a timescale on results improving.

 

"That is not the road to go down, you don't do that to guys of Craig and Archie's experience. You must make sure you give them as much support as possible. It would do no good to create an uncertain atmosphere among the players at this time.

 

"I have stated our squad is stronger and it's now up to them to respond for the manager and our fans.

 

"I'm sure there will be more changes, as there has been during every transfer window so far.

 

"The manager placed his faith in the players he has now when the last window closed and it's up to them to repay that.

 

"It's not for me to tell our fans what to do. The only way to get them back is by winning games and they have always shown a willingness to do that."

 

Dons boss Brown agreed his chairman had gone the extra mile to back his plans to build a successful team.

 

And he revealed former Pittodrie manager Sir Alex Ferguson had advised him to take the job because Milne would do everything possible to help him.

 

Brown said: "I don't know who is criticising the chairman but I would rather listen to Sir Alex.

 

"When we were considering coming here he phoned and said Aberdeen have a very good chairman.

 

"He is no mug, he has an antenna for everything and is the godfather as far as I am concerned.

 

"We have seen nothing to change our minds on that.

 

"Whether it was Steven Smith or Nick Blackman on loan, or to go and get Fallon, the chairman has found the funding to sign these players. I'm not ingratiating myself here. I'm not a crawler and if I thought otherwise I would say it.

 

"He has been very supportive and there has been a lot of money put in over the years.

 

"The chairman was right, the East Fife result was unacceptable. We had a meeting at Gleneagles and he told us he was putting a statement out, mainly because of the calls he was taking. The statement was spot on.

 

"This is a wonderful club that should not have the kind of result we had on Tuesday against East Fife.

 

"People told me about previous results and we were determined it would not happen to us but it did and it's unacceptable."

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Big bit from Duncan Fraser and Craig Brown praising the work of the ex wig purchaser in the Daily Record this morning

 

IN CRISIS on the pitch - flirting with financial meltdown off it.

The latest in a long line of cup exits to a bunch of lower-league minnows is devastating enough for Pittodrie punters long used to suffering.

But chief executive Duncan Fraser last night laid bare the extent of Aberdeen's plight - and revealed only the support of Stewart Milne is keeping the club out of the administrator's clutches.

Chairman and building magnate Milne, often the target for frustrated fans, has had to give his personal guarantee to Dons' bankers as their debt has soared above £12million.

And with gates dropping more than 3000 below the break-even figure - meaning Aberdeen are losing around £60,000 at every home game - Milne has had to dip into his own pocket to keep the club going.

He even personally funded the signing of Rory Fallon after Craig Brown insisted the striker would turn their dismal season around.

And Fraser admitted the only way to entice Red Army deserters back is by putting a winning team on the park.

Asked whether Aberdeen could continue to sustain these losses, keep their bankers happy and source finance to build a new stadium, the Dons chief insisted: "There are other clubs in a helluva lot more trouble than Aberdeen but we are fortunate to have the backing we do from our major shareholder.

"That's the bottom line. Our guys have been pushing the boat out as much as they can.

"Stewart supports the club in terms of its overall operation while we live within our budget which is the highest in my time here.

"There are not a lot of people prepared to do that. It's a thankless task."

Milne has offered to step aside if a suitable buyer comes forward but interest so far is scarce.

Despite the latest cup debacle against East Fife, the Pittodrie board, after holding their own post-mortem on the costly loss, remain convinced Brown is the right man to turn the club around.

Fraser said: "Our belief we have the right men in charge won't be changed by one bad cup result.

"The meeting was about coming up with ways to help Craig and Archie Knox.

"Lots of ideas were kicked around and we hope they will prove beneficial.

"We appointed Craig and Archie because we needed the best experienced management team available to take us through a period of transition. Craig and Archie have worked tirelessly to lay the foundations for a more successful team.

"The defeat by East Fife is a massive setback and the manager has admitted that but no one at the club is trying to hide from their share of the responsibility.

"The result was totally unacceptable and the fact it was only the latest in a long line of poor cup results adds to the disappointment.

"But it is the first since Craig and Archie took over and they made it clear they are determined it won't happen again.

"Despite the League Cup defeat, progress has been made under Craig and Archie and most observers have praised them for the improvement and organisation shown on the pitch.

"They have also made signings over the last period and we have a far stronger squad than last season but that's why the result against East Fife was such a shock.

"Everything will now be aimed at improving our league results and giving Craig and Archie everything they need to fulfil their ambitions for our club.

"I don't think we should ever put a timescale on results improving.

"That is not the road to go down, you don't do that to guys of Craig and Archie's experience. You must make sure you give them as much support as possible. It would do no good to create an uncertain atmosphere among the players at this time.

"I have stated our squad is stronger and it's now up to them to respond for the manager and our fans.

"I'm sure there will be more changes, as there has been during every transfer window so far.

"The manager placed his faith in the players he has now when the last window closed and it's up to them to repay that.

"It's not for me to tell our fans what to do. The only way to get them back is by winning games and they have always shown a willingness to do that."

Dons boss Brown agreed his chairman had gone the extra mile to back his plans to build a successful team.

And he revealed former Pittodrie manager Sir Alex Ferguson had advised him to take the job because Milne would do everything possible to help him.

Brown said: "I don't know who is criticising the chairman but I would rather listen to Sir Alex.

"When we were considering coming here he phoned and said Aberdeen have a very good chairman.

"He is no mug, he has an antenna for everything and is the godfather as far as I am concerned.

"We have seen nothing to change our minds on that.

"Whether it was Steven Smith or Nick Blackman on loan, or to go and get Fallon, the chairman has found the funding to sign these players. I'm not ingratiating myself here. I'm not a crawler and if I thought otherwise I would say it.

"He has been very supportive and there has been a lot of money put in over the years.

"The chairman was right, the East Fife result was unacceptable. We had a meeting at Gleneagles and he told us he was putting a statement out, mainly because of the calls he was taking. The statement was spot on.

"This is a wonderful club that should not have the kind of result we had on Tuesday against East Fife.

"People told me about previous results and we were determined it would not happen to us but it did and it's unacceptable."

 

 

Your fucking leadership of the club created this debt and stopped the fans coming. You sort it!

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A disgraceful guilt trip aimed at the support. To paraphrase:

 

"How dare you neandrethals blame the board and Milne for where AFC is. It is YOUR actions by not streaming through the turnstiles, regardless of what is happening on the pitch that is making things worse."

 

I proposed a timescale for change on a short medium and long term because I have heard this non commited drivel before.

 

I don't think we should ever put a timescale on results improving.

"That is not the road to go down, you don't do that to guys of Craig and Archie's experience. You must make sure you give them as much support as possible. It would do no good to create an uncertain atmosphere among the players at this time.

 

As someone else stated, securing the debt is one thing, but he is now securing an EVER INCREASING amount of debt. Therefore the way the club is being tun is putting us under MORE financial burden. We need a change of direction.

 

They just utterly refuse to be accountable to the support of this once respectable club.

 

Milne has offered to step aside if a suitable buyer comes forward but interest so far is scarce.

 

This line is always trotted out when we start grumbling at the board. I note no quotes with this statement. Is it the case that the retard are happy for us to continue on as a shambles? As somebody else said in another post that I'm sure someone out there would love to buy my house, but at this moment in time I have no idea because I dont have a "for sale" sign outside it. Its only by putting it up for sale in the first place will I know the level of demand. Its NOT the other way round. I dont get knocks on my door from strangers asking if the house is for sale.

 

In short, if Fraser thinks things are rosie in the garden then he really needs to take a long hard look at the club now and the potential thats been wasted.

 

:finger:

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This cunt has been in charge to get us into the £12 worth of debt, all that says is hes made a fucking mess and you are stuck with him!

 

(Craig) Brown said: "I don't know who is criticising the chairman but I would rather listen to Sir Alex (Ferguson).

 

Oi you old senile cunt, its us, the fans. Fergie clearly doesnt care too much about us otherwise you would have had your maequee loan signings this summer! You are going straight down the Mark McGhee line of criticising the fans.

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I am now of the opinion that the ONLY thing this board will understand as to how angry we feel about the way our club is ran is through lost revenue through turnstile receipts. That, from the above statement seems to be the only thing Fraser cares about. NOT the experience of the poor sods who have to endure thier 90 mins once they have stumped up.

 

Thing is, we need  some way of making our demands and feelings clear if organised direct action by the support is to happen. I propose a boycott of a couple of home games.

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I am now of the opinion that the ONLY thing this board will understand as to how angry we feel about the way our club is ran is through lost revenue through turnstile receipts. That, from the above statement seems to be the only thing Fraser cares about. NOT the experience of the poor sods who have to endure thier 90 mins once they have stumped up.

 

Thing is, we need  some way of making our demands and feelings clear if organised direct action by the support is to happen. I propose a boycott of a couple of home games.

 

The boycott is already happening, just because it's not organised doesn't mean there isn't one going on. 3,000 less than their break even figure would certainly suggest the club know there's one on too.

 

Your point about the whole experience the fans endure is one which really has to be addressed by the club.  The stadium is crumbling. I know the plan is to move house, but it's been crumbling for years. Even  if they replaced the old, rusting seats in the South Stand, a lick of paint here and there... just do something that's a wee bit positive. these aren't massive things, they're not going to make or break if anyone goes to Pittodrie or not but it shows a wee bit of pride in what you're doing.  They have no appreciation of how miserable it can be at times and they seem pro-active in dumbing it down even more with their issues with the RU, flags, ticker tape... anything to water it down, they'll do it.

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So he's personally financed a couple signings?

 

Whoop-dee-fuckin-doo!  Each and every one of us has 'personally financed' the club over the years but the difference is we were constantly doing so.

 

He's only decided to chip in after cutting back so much that it now it looks like we're going to drop a division.  Where was his money to personally back managers whilst they were flying high in Europe?

 

 

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So he's personally financed a couple signings?

 

Whoop-dee-fuckin-doo!  Each and every one of us has 'personally financed' the club over the years but the difference is we were constantly doing so.

 

He's only decided to chip in after cutting back so much that it now it looks like we're going to drop a division.  Where was his money to personally back managers whilst they were flying high in Europe?

 

I met one of the Dunfermline board last season and he had a Dunfermline player on his joinery firms pay roll and so did other members of the board - he said it was quite a common occurrence for guys who have even medium size businesses in the Scottish League.

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So he's personally financed a couple signings?

 

Whoop-dee-fuckin-doo!  Each and every one of us has 'personally financed' the club over the years but the difference is we were constantly doing so.

 

He's only decided to chip in after cutting back so much that it now it looks like we're going to drop a division.  Where was his money to personally back managers whilst they were flying high in Europe?

 

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

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I simply can't believe that the bastards are turning this around on us.....the fans are the ones that have kept this club going for 108 years.

 

When are they going to wake up and smell the coffee. Football is an entertainment business no different to any other. Put simply if people are not going to be entertained they ain't going to bother going. Does Wiggy take Mrs Wiggy and the bairns to the pictures to see a shite film or to the theatre to see something he thinks won't entertain them ?

 

The product on the park simply isn't worth paying the entrance money of over £20, never mind the additional costs associated with a day out at the football.

 

Fear of failure is stiffling us, and ultimately leading to exactly the end result they are trying to aovid.

 

I'd rather we played each game with a game plan set out to entertain and try to win, not trying to avoid defeat. If we are going down, and it could well be a real possibility this season, I'd rather we at least had a go even if it means losing games 3-2 or 4-2.

 

I sense other may feel the same way as me, so come on to fuck, grow a set and have a fucking go at entertaining.

 

Still as fucked off as I was about 10pm on Tuesday night........a.ctaully change that, this sort of shite and blame culture aimed at the support is making me even angrier than I was then.

 

Thank fuck I'm back playing golf. Even a shite round beats paying to watch that bunch of useless cunts

 

Yours a truely fucked off fan of over forty years

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Article has just pissed me off further as well. To try and blame the fans for the mess we are in is farcial. Shows up Brown as nothing but a yes man as well. The more I have read from him this week the more I am convinced he needs to be emptied as quickly as possible along with the chairman and the rest of the board.

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Article has just pissed me off further as well. To try and blame the fans for the mess we are in is farcial. Shows up Brown as nothing but a yes man as well. The more I have read from him this week the more I am convinced he needs to be emptied as quickly as possible along with the chairman and the rest of the board.

 

You his dietician?

 

 

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Fear of failure is stiffling us, and ultimately leading to exactly the end result they are trying to aovid.

 

I'd rather we played each game with a game plan set out to entertain and try to win, not trying to avoid defeat. If we are going down, and it could well be a real possibility this season, I'd rather we at least had a go even if it means losing games 3-2 or 4-2.

 

I sense other may feel the same way as me, so come on to fuck, grow a set and have a fucking go at entertaining.

 

 

Totally agree with your whole post Al but I fear the bit I have quoted will never be realised, especially while Brown is manager.

 

He's cautious beyond belief - his tactics at Hampden in the first semi last season showed this but in fairness this was his first real mistake after taking the job on... however, the really worrying part is that he hasn't got a lot right since.

 

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Totally agree with your whole post Al but I fear the bit I have quoted will never be realised, especially while Brown is manager.

 

He's cautious beyond belief - his tactics at Hampden in the first semi last season showed this but in fairness this was his first real mistake after taking the job on... however, the really worrying part is that he hasn't got a lot right since.

 

And agree with your comments.......lets be quite honest he has never exactly been renowned for his free flowing attacking teams......actually his time at Motherwell was probably as close to that as he ever got.

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"And with gates dropping more than 3000 below the break-even figure - meaning Aberdeen are losing around £60,000 at every home game - Milne has had to dip into his own pocket to keep the club going".

 

This is a fucking lie. It is a misrepresentation on a disgusting scale.

 

The truth is that any cash that he has put in, he's got something more back. It is my understanding that he paid considerably less per share than we all did at the issues. Any further monies he has put in has been by way of loans which he charged the club interest on at a level well above base rate. He's making money OUT of AFC plc, not putting money in.

 

This further exploitation guarantees the continuing abortion of a balance sheet which fits Milne's agenda in two key objectives:-

 

1. Nobody can possibly invest in this illiquid business when the size of the debt relative to the break-even or profit potential is already prohibitive.

 

2. The size of the debt mountain he created and perpetuates means that the business has zero option but to sell it's only asset, Pittodrie.

 

Until, for the first time ever, the balance sheet and P & L shows "donations" in our revenue and income stream then these lies won't pull the wool over our eyes. An absolutely disgusting strategy by Milne and his fawning sycophantic cunts to twist the reality. 

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"And with gates dropping more than 3000 below the break-even figure - meaning Aberdeen are losing around £60,000 at every home game - Milne has had to dip into his own pocket to keep the club going".

 

This is a fucking lie. It is a misrepresentation on a disgusting scale.

 

The truth is that any cash that he has put in, he's got something more back. It is my understanding that he paid considerably less per share than we all did at the issues. Any further monies he has put in has been by way of loans which he charged the club interest on at a level well above base rate. He's making money OUT of AFC plc, not putting money in.

 

This further exploitation guarantees the continuing abortion of a balance sheet which fits Milne's agenda in two key objectives:-

 

1. Nobody can possibly invest in this illiquid business when the size of the debt relative to the break-even or profit potential is already prohibitive.

 

2. The size of the debt mountain he created and perpetuates means that the business has zero option but to sell it's only asset, Pittodrie.

 

Until, for the first time ever, the balance sheet and P & L shows "donations" in our revenue and income stream then these lies won't pull the wool over our eyes. An absolutely disgusting strategy by Milne and his fawning sycophantic cunts to twist the reality.

 

I too was thinking that the 60k figure is a bit of a made up figure. Does the 60k figure relate to Tuesdays cup game or to previous SPL games? What the hell is the break even figure? Who can you equate attendance which has season ticket holders, corporate and gate sales to attendance? What is the costs of running each game? What is the wage bill? If it is Tuesdays figure - how much money did we have to give to East Fife? And mostly why is it a nice round figure - it screams of a made up figure!

 

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