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Friday
Sep152017

Tell your MP we're #fansnotnumbers

The Fulham Supporters' Trust strongly supports the #FansNotNumbers campaign launched by Supporters Direct earlier month.

The campaign might have got underway with an excellent event organised by the Blackpool Supporters' Trust shining a light on the worrying developments at Bloomfield Road, but the proposals contained within Supporters Direct's policy paper advocating regulatory reform of English football have been developed over eleven years of studying the inadequateness of our game compared with the continent's licensing structures.

The #fansnotnumbers campaign, which is being backed by the sports clothing manufacterer Skins and the online discussion site Sporf, aims to demonstrate to decision-makers that football in England and Wales should be reformed along the lines suggested by the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee in 2012 and the Department of Culture Media and Sport's Expert Working Group in 2015. The recent examples of Blackpool, Blackburn Rovers, Coventry City, Charlton Athletic and Leyton Orient show that owners are currently allowed to treat fans as consumers rather than recognising that they are the lifeblood of the game.

As the Fulham Supporters' Trust chair Tom Greatrex told the #fansnotnumbers meeting at Brisbane Road, the era of 'clubs marking their own homework' has to end. Supporters Direct have made a number of recommendations to improve the governance of the game:

 

  • An independent regulator sufficiently resourced and empowered to set and monitor regulation of clubs
  • A new club licensing system that will proactively regulate club football
  • Tangible improvements to English football's governance framework around the ownership, stewardship and funding of clubs, the protection of stadiums and curbs on taking money out of the game.

 

The Trust urges all Fulham fans to read the full Supporters Direct report and tell your MP today that we are #fansnotnumbers.

NOTTINGHAM FOREST - AWAYDAY GUIDE
NOTTINGHAM FOREST v FULHAM, TUESDAY 26 SEPTEMBER 2017
Fulham travel to Nottingham Forest for their next Championship fixture tomorrow night. Fulham have been allocated 2,000 tickets in the City Ground's Bridgford End Tickets are on general sale, priced at £20 for adults, £14 for over 65s, £12 for under 18s and £6 for under 12s. Supporters can purchase tickets by visiting the Fulham ticket office, calling 0203 3871 0810 or by paying in cash at the City Ground tomorrow night.

GETTING TO THE CITY GROUND

BY CAR

Exit the M1 at Junction 24 and take the A453 towards Nottingham. Then follow the A52 East towards Grantham and then onto the A6011 into Nottingham. The ground is next to the A6011. Street parking near to the City Ground is very limited, so Fulham supporters are advised to either try the park and ride at Clifton South or the Nottingham City Council car parks. There is a match day car park on the Victoria Embankment close to Trent Bridge cricket ground, for £5 an hour. This car park is situated around 2-3 minutes’ walk from the City Ground. There is also a council facility at the Eastcroft depot, priced at £4 per car. The depot is about 10 minutes’ walk from the City Ground, just off London Road.

BY TRAIN

Nottingham station is located around half a mile from the City Ground. You can get a direct train from London Marylebone and there is the possibility of catching the 2307 from Newark North Gate to King’s Cross, although this will require a pre-booked taxi. Buses operate from the station and the city centre to the ground and a taxi should cost you £5.

BY COACH

Fulham's official coaches will leave Craven Cottage and the Earl Beatty pub at Motspur Park at 2.30pm. Places are still available on either coach and they are priced at £17 for adult season ticket holders and members and £10 for junior season ticket holders and members. The general sale prices are £22 for adults and £15 for juniors.

AWAY PUBS

Most pubs near to the City Ground are designated as home supporters only. The exceptions are the Meadow Club on Meadow Lane, which is the Notts County supporters’ club, and the Nottingham Rowing Club on Trentside, which usually charges £1 per entry. The Stratford Haven on Stratford Road has enthusiastically welcomed away fans in the past and serves beers from the Castle Rock brewery as well as other drinks and food.

Away from the ground, there are a number of pubs around the Waterfront complex, including the Company Inn, which is one of the best Wetherspoon’s in Nottingham. Fulham fans should be able to drink in a number of the city centre pubs and several offer a great selection of real ale, Castle Rock beers and other drinks including The Olde Trip To Jerusalem, The Castle (in Castle Street), Salutation Inn (on Hounds Gate), The Round House (in Royal Standard Place), the Canal House and the Vat and Fiddle, which is the Castle Rock brewery tap, on Queensbridge Road.

EFL TRUST MEET-UP

Representatives of the Fulham Supporters' Trust will be meeting our colleagues from t he recently-formed Nottingham Forest Supporters' Trust prior to the game tomorrow night. Having discussed the success of our structured relationship with Fulham FC at the Supporters Summit in July, we have held further talks since and look forward to discussing ticket pricing, communication with the EFL, community projects and other issues of mutual interest tomorrow.
OTHER TRUST NEWS
TRUST HOSTS SUPPORTERS DIRECT BOARD TRAINING DAY

We were delighted to host Supporters Direct latest training day for Trust board members in the Johnny Haynes' suite at Craven Cottage yesterday. Board members from Billericay Town Supporters' Trust, AFC Wimbledon, the Shrimpers' Trust, Tonbridge Angels FC and the Luton Town Supporters' Trust received guidance on best practice and how to best represent fans' interests from Nicola Hudson and Deborah Dilworth of Supporters Direct. The Trust would like to thank Zara Barka, Sarah Scragg, Casper Sylsvig and Alistair Mackintosh for their support of this successful event.
 

#FANSNOTNUMBERS 
The Trust fully supports the #FansNotNumbers campaign, launched by Supporters Direct, SKINS and Sporf, to push for regulatory reform of football in England and Wales. Trust chair Tom Greatrex told a roadshow at Leyton Orient last week that the era of 'clubs marking their own homework' should end. We are asking all Fulham fans to ask their MPs to agree we are #fansnotnumbers. Please support this campaign now.
Friday
Sep152017

Awayday Guide: Burton Albion

GETTING TO BURTON

BY CAR

Leave the M1 at junction 22 and join the A511 towards Coalville/Burton. Turn right at the junction of the A5121, towards Burton North. Drive past the McDonald's on your right and the stadium will be visible to the right of the roundabout directly ahead. Turn right at the roundabout into Princess Way. The Trust have been advised that railway bridge repair works and other roadworks will add significant delays to any car journeys this weekend.

The large car park at the ground which costs £5 but this will swiftly full up on matchdays and can be difficult to exit immediately after the game. Car parking is also produced at the Ryknild Trading Estate for the same charge, just off the roundabout right by the stadium, and there is some street parking avaiable.

BY TRAIN

Burton station is reachable within two hours of London, via a change at Derby, from St Pancras International. The station is around a mile and a half away from the Pirelli Stadium. As you come out of the station turn left and go down the hill. Turn right into Derby Road and from there it is a straight road up to the stadium. It should take about 25 minutes to walk. Otherwise there is a taxi rank at the station and the cost up to the ground is around £6.

TICKETS

Supporters who haven't purchased tickets can buy terrace tickets from the Burton Albion ticket office before the game tomorrow priced at £20 for adults, £18 for over 65s, £15 for young persons aged between 17 and 22 and £7 for under-17s.

AWAY PUBS

Burton provides a large selection of local pubs and microbreweries for visiting fans to enjoy, which makes one of the trips of the season. Starting close to the station, the nearest pub would be the Roebuck Inn (101 Station Street, DE14 1BT), which serves a wide selection of ales and beers, and has a number of big screens that will show all the televised sport. Further along the same street are The Last Heretic micropub, which features prominently in the CAMRA 2018 Good Beer guide, and opens from 11am. It serves an impressive range of locally-brewed ales and beers in a relaxed atmosphere with a beer garden and openly welcomes visiting fans.

The Devonshire Arms, located on the corner of Milton Street, stocks a large range of Burton Bridge beers, ales as well as bottled continental beers and wines. It has a wide-ranging and tasty food menu.

The Trust have been contacted by the Burton Beech Inn on Derby Road, which is located between the Pirelli factory and the McDonald's. It is the closest pub to the ground, about ten minutes' walk from the stadium, and offers car parking for £5, The Beech Inn is a Marston's pub, which is looking forward to hosting Fulham fans, and will serve from two bars inside and has a beer garden as well.

The Great Northern on Wetmore Road, which is just off the roundabout over the railway bridge away from the stadium, will serve Burton Bridge Beers and guest ales. Real ale drinkers are also encouraged to try the Burton Town Brewery in an industrial unit at Falcoln Close, about a half mile from the ground. Real and craft ales, larger, cider and wine are all available well before kick off at home games.

The Fuggle and Nugget (81 High Street) is also highly recommended. This micropub will serve up to four guest real ales, ciders, wide, spirits and several bottled beers. A large range of tasty food is also avaiable from 12 noon. The nearby Burton Bridge Inn, just off the High Street, also known as the Burton Brewery Tap, is away-fan friendly and serves a number of locally-sourced real ales, beers, lagers and ciders.

Friday
Sep082017

Notes from September meeting with Fulham Football Club

On Tuesday 5 September, Tom Greatrex and Dan Crawford from the Fulham Supporters’ Trust met with Alistair Mackintosh (AM, chief executive officer), Casper Stylsvig (CS, chief revenue officer), Sean O’Loughlin (SOL, finance director), David Daly (DD, non-executive director), Carmelo Mifsud (CM, interim communications and media director), Jack Burrows (JB, senior marketing executive) of Fulham Football Club at Motspur Park as part of our ongoing structured dialogue.

RIVERSIDE STAND REDEVELOPMENT

AM and SOL confirmed that Fulham had been working with architectural firm Populous, who have previously worked on the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium, Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium and the London Olympic Stadium amongst others, over the past few months on revisions to the design to redevelop the Riverside Stand. It is the club’s intention to begin consultation in October, including with supporters, prior to submitting any required planning application to Hammersmith and Fulham Council. Both AM and SOL told the Trust that Shahid Khan was keen to make swift progress with the Riverside Stand redevelopment to secure Fulham’s future at Craven Cottage and increase the club’s commercial and hospitality offer to supporters.

MATCHDAY EXPERIENCE AT CRAVEN COTTAGE

The Trust had previously been invited to join a working group discussing the matchday experience at Craven Cottage and how it can be improved for Fulham supporters. This initiative came directly from Slavisa Jokanovic, who wished to replicate the atmosphere from the second half of last season at each home fixture. The Trust presented feedback from our members following the opening home games of the season, with regards to pre-match and half-time entertainment, as well as the long queues to be served at the various kiosks around the ground both before kick-off, during the game and at half-time. In response, CS said he would be raising these catering and staffing issues with Delaware North and that the Club are looking at increased promotions for fans. The Trust and the Club have also agreed that many of the fan-produced flags and banners should be displayed in prominent positions at home fixtures and DD, CM, CS and JB confirmed work is being undertaken to ensure this is achieved as soon as possible.

AUGUST TRANSFER DEALINGS

AM reiterated that Fulham’s priorities following the play-off semi-final defeat were to retain Ryan Sessegnon and Tom Cairney given the significant interest in their services. Bringing back Tomas Kalas and Lucas Piazon was important to everyone – and they eventually arrived for a second season on loan. AM said that the club then wanted to build on the strong second half of last season so that Fulham could be promoted. The recruitment of two strikers was one of the club’s highest priorities. Both Rui Fonte and Aboubakar Kamara had been tracked by Fulham for a considerable period of time and were the subject of serious interest from the club during the January transfer window. They were two of the club’s top targets this summer with the club’s scouting network and analytics department in agreement to proceed – and it was then a matter of concluding a financially acceptable deal, which proved successful.

Once Fulham had signed Fonte and Kamara, both Tony and Shahid Khan gave their support to finance a move for a further striker on deadline day with Dwight Gayle viewed as a bonus were a deal to bring him in be concluded. Gayle was ultimately not signed because Newcastle United were unable to bring in a replacement.

Sone Aluko was offered a very lucrative contract, which would have made him one of Fulham’s highest-paid players, but he turned it down as he wished to secure a longer-term deal, which he was offered by Reading. The transfer represented a very healthy business return on a player Fulham signed on a free transfer last summer, which strengthened the club’s financial position. Tony Khan and Fulham were happy to allow Aluko to join Reading at this price once Fulham had brought in Sheyi Ojo and were close to recruiting further wide players – Jordan Graham arrived from Wolves on loan and Yohan Mollo was signed a free transfer on deadline day.

Asked about the possibility of the changes to the summer transfer window that have been floated by both Premier League and the EFL, AM confirmed that he would be in favour of a trial of a shortened transfer window so that Fulham could probably understand the consequences of such a change. This issue will be discussed further by the Premier League, EFL, Championship clubs and the footballing authorities in the coming months.

FINANCIAL FAIR PLAY

AM and SOL confirmed that Fulham remained comfortably within the limits allowed under the EFL and Championship Financial Fair Play regulations. By way of further explanation, SOL said that the rules in place from the 2016-2017 season – which contained a new set of ‘Profit and Sustainability’ regulations to solidify a consistent approach for those clubs that move between the Championship and the Premier League – permitted a maximum loss of £39m over a three-year season timeframe from March 2017 to March 2020. The reporting date to the EFL has also been shifted from December to March and Fulham’s player sales that would fall in this reporting period, including Ross McCormack and Kostas Mitroglou as well as this summer’s departures, leave the club with considerable headroom within the current regulations. 

COMMERICAL PARTNERSHIPS

In response to a question from the Trust, CS talked through the portfolio of commercial partners that the club has recently announced.

In July, Fulham agreed a two-year deal with Grosvenor Casinos to become the Club’s main team partner, which included their logo being displayed on the club’s first-team and U23 shirts and becoming the Club’s designated betting and casino partner. CS revealed that, once Visit Florida had confirmed that they were not looking for renew their existing deal, Fulham were approached by more than thirty companies who were interested in becoming the main team partner. Grosvenor Casinos were initially in the shortlisted categories of interested parties, but increased their offer to considerably more than the existing deal, and were very keen to work with Fulham Football Club. CS recognised the concerns of some supporters around having a gambling company prominently associated with the club and said that Grosvenor Casinos were fully signed up to the Gamble Aware programme and were keen to work with the Club, the Fulham Foundation and supporters to tackle problem gambling during their partnership.

In August, Fulham announced a deal with West London Audi, who have become the Club’s official automotive partner. CS said that West London Audi were an excellent replacement for Motor Village, who were the previous partner, and had already shown a real appetite to engage with Fulham supporters. The exclusive offer for season ticket holders has proven very popular in its first month.

Also in August, Fulham announced that GameTime Hydration, a sports energy drinks company originally based in Dallas, Texas, and new in the UK, would become the Club’s official energy drink partner for the next two seasons. As part of the agreement, GameTime Hydration’s logo now appears on the back of the shorts of the Fulham first team’s home, away and third strip. CS and SOL said that GameTime Hydration were very keen to grow their brand awareness in the UK and saw Fulham as an excellent fit for their business. CS said that this deal was one of the most expensive for short sponsorship in the Championship.

As announced last month, CS confirmed that Fulham have entered into a global partnership with Konami Digital Entertainment for their Pro Evolution Soccer computer games series. This partnership will see Fulham perfectly digitally recreated in the forthcoming PES 2018 edition, which is released on Thursday 14 September. The partnership sees the PES 2018 logo featured on the back of the first team’s home, away and goalkeeping kit as well as being the main sponsor of Fulham’s youth teams’ playing kit. CS felt this deal was a significant coup for a Championship club and represented an excellent commercial result for Fulham. Konami will also be heavily involved in Fulham’s family zone, with activities exclusively designed for younger supporters.

CS said that Fulham were also extending existing arrangements with Adidas, Carlsberg and Delaware North. CS further revealed that the club were inundated with requests from potential partners to discuss associations with Fulham and that he was continuing to work to increase the revenue realised from such partnerships and delivering the best offers and service for supporters.

AWAY TICKETING

As previously released to Trust members, the Club confirmed the ticketing arrangements for September’s away fixtures at Nottingham Forest and QPR. Fulham have allocated around 2,000 tickets for the trip to the City Ground on Tuesday 26 September and 3,178 tickets for the local derby at Loftus Road on 29 September. The significant change to the selling procedure for the QPR fixture was an increase to two tickets per season ticket holder. The Trust thanked the Club, especially AM, CS and head of ticketing Katy Brecht, for their continuous dialogue on away tickets and raised the ongoing issue of supporters being unable to specify sections of the stand to sit in at away matches. The Club confirmed that this is the subject of ongoing discussions with Ticketmaster.

The meeting closed at 12.15pm

Wednesday
Sep062017

Away ticket update: Nottingham Forest and QPR

The Fulham Supporters' Trust are pleased to provide members with information regarding the sale of tickets for Fulham's forthcoming away fixtures against QPR and Nottingham Forest. Tickets for both of these matches go on sale from 10am this morning.

We would like to thank Fulham FC's chief executive officer Alistair Mackintosh, head of ticketing Katy Brecht and chief revenues officer Casper Stylsvig for allowing us to provide this update to supporters' trust members.

NOTTINGHAM FOREST v FULHAM

TUESDAY 26 SEPTEMBER, 7.45PM

Fulham have been allocated 2,000 tickets in the lower tier of the Bridgford Stand. Tickets for Fulham's fixture at the City Ground will be priced at £20 for adults, £14 for adults over 65, £12 for under 18s, £6 for under 12s. There are eleven pairs of wheelchair tickets available at the above prices (with carers going free) and several ambulant disabled tickets also available. Supporters seeking to purchase the disabled tickets should call the Fulham FC ticket office on 0203 871 0810 and select option 2. These tickets will go on sale to season ticket holders and members at 10am today, with the remainder going on general sale from 10am on Friday 8 September. Supporters will receive 5 loyalty points per ticket purchased.

QPR v FULHAM

FRIDAY 29 SEPTEMBER, 7.45PM (LIVE ON SKY SPORTS)

Fulham have been allocated 3,071 tickets in the School End. 873 tickets in the Upper Tier Gold section (the blocks between blocks Y2-Y6) have been priced at £34 for adults, £17 for under 18s, £24 for adults aged between 18 and 21 and £24 for those adults aged over 60. 328 tickets in the upper tier silver section (which is located just in blocks Y2 and Y6) are priced at £29 for adults, £14 for under 18s, £20 for adults aged between 18 and 21 and £20 for adults aged over 60. In this section, children who are under 8 and accompanied by an adult go free of charge. The remainder of the tickets - some 1,325 tickets - are located in the Lower Tier - and are priced at £29 for adults, £14 for under 18s, £20 for adults aged between 18 and 21 and £20 for adults aged over 60. Children who are under 8 and accompanied by an adult can also book a free ticket in this section.

Once this allocation has been sold, 545 restricted view tickets will be made available. 319 of these tickets are in the Upper Tier gold section (blocks between Y2 and Y6) priced at £32 for adults, £16 for under 18s, £23 for adults aged between 18 and 21 and £23 for adults aged over 60. 226 Upper tier silver restricted view seats will be priced at £27 for adults, £13 for under 18s, £19 for young adults aged between 18 and 21 and £19 for adults aged over 65. Children who are under 8 and accompanied by an adult can also book a free ticket in this section.

There are five pairs of wheelchair tickets available for disabled supporters priced at £20 for a disabled supporter and carer. There are also twenty pairs of ambulant disabled tickets, located in the upper (silver section) or lower tier, also priced at £20 for a disabled support and their carer. Supporters seeking to purchase the disabled tickets should call the Fulham FC ticket office on 0203 871 0810 and select option 2.

In a change from last season's fixture, supporters will be able to buy two tickets per season. The selling schedule for these tickets is as follows:

Today (Wednesday 6 September): on sale to season ticket holders and members with 600 loyalty points or more

Thursday 7 September: on sale to season ticket holders and members with 400 loyalty points or more

Friday 8 September: on sale to season ticket holders and members with 200 loyalty points or more

Monday 11 September: on sale to season ticket holders and members with 100 loyalty points or more

Tuesday 12 September: on sale to all season ticket holders and members

Wednesday 12 September: on general sale

QPR have requested that the tickets be sold in the following order:

1st: Upper Tier Gold

2nd: Upper Tier Silver

3rd: Lower Tier

4th: Restricted view

Supporters will receive one loyalty point per ticket purchased. This will be an all-ticket fixture for Fulham fans and there will no matchday sales for away supporters.

In view of the proximity of Loftus Road to Craven Cottage and Motspur Park, the Club will not be operating coach travel for this fixture.

The Trust would like to encourage all our members and Fulham fans to consider purchasing a ticket for these fixtures to cheer Slavisa Jokanovic's side towards further vital victories away from home. Supporters will be able to purchase tickets online from 10am today, by calling the Fulham FC ticket office hotline on 0203 871 0810 and selecting option 1 or by visiting the ticket office on Stevenage Road.

Saturday
Sep022017

#Game4Grenfell

The Trust have worked closely with Fulham Football Club, the Fulham Foundation and the local councils to support everyone affected by the Grenfell Fire tragedy earlier this summer.

In the absence of a Fulham fixture this weekend, the Trust would like to publicise the Game 4 Grenfell this afternoon at Loftus Road being held to raise money and offer support to those affected by the fire. Two teams, managed by Les Ferdinand and Alan Shearer, will contest a 90-minute friendly with the likes of David Seaman, Jamie Redknapp, Trevor Sinclair, Stan Collymore, Peter Crouch and a host of celebrities playing. Tickets are available here – and you can also donate to the Grenfell relief fund run by the London Community Organisation.