Day: May 21, 2009

Merthyr & Daylight Robbery

The ongoing crisis at Southern League club Merthyr Tydfil has been one of this season’s slow-burning financial crises, but events over the last day or two have given us a clearer idea of the motivation of the club’s owner, and further concern that football’s newest franchise club could soon be foisted upon us unless the game’s authorities step in and make a stand against the chancers, speculators and fly-by-nights and in favour of the actual supporters of the clubs themselves. It is a situation that has come about through a mixture of slow, painful neglect and that is exacerbated by the somewhat peculiar relationship between teams in the Welsh Premier League and the English non-league game. Ultimately, however, the mismanagement of one man the willingness of an anonymous other to cash in on this is threatening the very existence of a club with a long and proud history. As long ago as August, we reported on the frankly bizarre behaviour of Merthyr owner Wyn Holloway, who seemed to want the club’s supporters trust to pay bills that had been run up under his charge and, when the trust submitted an offer to him to take over the day to day running of the club in returning for a controlling stake in the club’s shares, returned the offer to them unopened and barred the Trust Chair from their ground. In...

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Shit Shot Mungo: Episode 16

And now for a little light entertainment. Don’t worry, though, because there will be more non-league doom and gloom on here later this evening – this time, from South Wales. In this week’s “Shit Shot Mungo”, ahead of Heart of Clackmannanshire’s last league match of the season, caretaker-manager-cum-terrible-striker Mungo McCrackas finally fulfils one of his lifelong ambitions by getting to appear on “A Question Of Sport” but manages to ruin it by getting in an unnecessary fight. Keep your eyes peeled for particularly unflattering artistic rendition of Sue Barker. Drawn, as ever, by the lovely Dotmund. There’s a bigger version available...

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Brighton, Falmer & A Gambler

Brighton & Hove Albion’s move to Falmer has been beset by every problem imaginable over the last few years, but when BBC South showed construction work starting at the site of the proposed new stadium last year one might have been forgiven for thinking that things were finally starting to move in the right direction. In the background, however, circumstances were conspiring against the Albion yet again. The global financial meltdown was having a disastrous effect on the club’s ability to find the tens of millions of pounds required, and the team’s form on the pitch seemed likely to end in their relegation. Over the last month, however, the sun has finally shone on the Sussex club. Under the astute management of Russell Slade (a man who could only look more like his name suggests if he wore a top hat with mirrors on it and had a broad Black Country accent), they scrambled clear of the drop on the last day of the season, and now they’ve secured the sort of funding that most supporters of lower division teams only dream of. Rumours of the takeover had been circling in the city for several months, but on Monday the truth finally came out. After twelve years in charge, Dick Knight has stepped aside as the chairman of the club, and thirty-nine year old Tony Bloom has taken over...

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