Chester City: The Death Rattle – Part 13

Ian

Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.

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27 Responses

  1. blogdroed says:

    Great stuff once again.

  2. Coco says:

    As I understand it the Danes do not intend to pay off the Vaughan debt in full. They’ll try to get Vaughan to settle for a lot less. Whether or not this is realistic is another thing.

    The Danes claim that they have been in contact with a person from the CFU. Apparently they have misinterpreted the positive tone in the correpondance or maybe that person has been operating without mandate from the rest of the board but that is obviously speculation.

    I’m not sure that the “lie” posted on the Danish Website is intentional. As for gathering supporters in Denmark they do not gain that much from stating that they have support from CFU. If the had omitted the CFU contact from the website or merely stated that they had running talks with the supporters I do not think that it would have been of great difference to the Danish supporters of this project.

  3. CCFC fan says:

    Another brilliant article and great read.. thank you.

  4. Martin says:

    The FA, FL and Conference authorities are becoming increasingly unfit to run our national sport and need replacing.

    Sadly that would probably be by the likes of Scudamore and Murdoch and cause further unnecessary divisions and conflict in what is basically a simple game almost destroyed by greed.

  5. RichardG says:

    Sadly, I just can’t see the FC doing the decent thing. I’m sure (though I fervently hope I’m wrong) that they’ll find some excuse to let this whole sorry episode plod along. Having broken their own rules to let CCFC play in the first place (though I believe this was underpressure from the FL who had threatened to remove the FC promotion place if they didn’t? Please correct me if I’m wrong), their main concern now seems to be protecting their own decisions and reputations (HA!). But, in the end, what’s the point? If CCFC is allowed to survive this time, the fans will desert on-mass, the players will still strike/leave as they won’t be paid; neither will the Police or Council. And the whole issue will crash down in an even bigger mess. There’s a phrase about holes and digging isn’t there?

  6. Dermot O'Dreary says:

    I don’t think anyone seriously expects Chester City to be expelled from the Football Conference today, do they?

    Either the club will pull another rabbit out of the hat at the last minute or, failing that, the Conference will bottle out citing the decision having been made in consultation with the clubs who will of course have voted with nothing but self-interest.

  7. Martin says:

    A lot of people expect it Dermot.

    They simply cannot fulfil home or away fixtures at the moment and there is absolutely no sign of that changing.

  8. Dermot O'Dreary says:

    You clearly have more faith than me in the decision-makers Martin !!

  9. Pistov says:

    The FC would be foolish in the extreme to accept more rubbish in the guise of promises of funding, or bridging loans, or new investment or whatever is spouted by Vaughans puppets when they get in front of the FC. The current regime is doomed, is hanging on for whatever revenue they can continue to squeeze (they are wanting to finish the season to get their hands on the FL parachute payment. They will probably tell the board at the FC that they will use this to settle debts…) out of the club.

    Vaughan lost 3 of his apartments on Chester Wharfside this week to repossesion. Hardly the actions of a man who can keep any football club afloat. If he cant pay the coach company in full, and only has 7 first team players, wtf would the FC think he can do to keep it going to the end of the season? Scottish oncers again?

  10. Richie says:

    So whats the difference between being kicked out and failing to turn up for any more fixtures?

  11. Dermot O'Dreary says:

    And so to absolutely no-one’s surprise, my expectation of no expulsion today proved to be accurate.

    Wonder what bullshit tale they span THIS time?

  12. Albert Ross says:

    Wrexham’s site now contains what appears to be a statement by the FC Board –
    http://www.wrexhamafc.co.uk/page/NewsDetail/0,,10311~1970370,00.html

    This makes it clear that the board want to expel Chester, but that ultimately they are leaving it the the other Conference Clubs to decide, claiming that they are legally required to do this. Whether the clubs will in fact vote for this is of course open to question – but the statement (presumably issued early by Wrexham, and I would guess should have been embargoed until tomorrow) makes it pretty clear that the Board have no confidence that Chester City in its current form can complete the season….

  13. Ralph says:

    CONFERENCE STATEMENT ON CHESTER CITY

    The of the Football Conference today (18th February 2010); met with representatives of Chester City (2004) FC, when the club pleaded guilty to all five counts with which they were charged.

    These included those in respect of failing to fulfil fixtures, non payment of Football Creditors, failing to attend satisfactorily to competition business and bringing the competition into disrepute.

    At the conclusion of a lengthy meeting, the representatives were advised that the Board failed to be convinced with their presentation that the club were able to demonstrate the club’s ability to fulfil future fixtures in the competition and as a consequence informed the club of their finding in relation to Conference Rule 8.6.

    In compliance with Article 5.2 of the Football Conference, the Board will recommend to its Member Clubs that Chester City (2004) FC should face expulsion from membership. To facilitate this recommendation the Board are now legally mandated to convene a General Meeting of Member Clubs to, receive, deliberate and vote on the said recommendation to expel in consideration of Rule 8.6 and Article 5.2. Until the meeting is held the club will remain suspended from the competition and their representatives suitably advised as to any future plans or presentations they may well wish to pursue against the recommendation of the Board to its Member Clubs.

    The date and venue of the meeting is subject to final clarification.

  14. Dermot O'Dreary says:

    Apparently a 3/4 majority is required to expel Chester – I can’t believe that that many clubs will vote in favour. Stevenage has already been griping about the points that they’ll lose if Chester’s record is expunged, and there’s plenty of other clubs who’ll be relishing the prospect of a fixture that’ll be little more than a walkover. Self-interest of the clubs will be enough to save them.

  15. Micky F says:

    I think the Football League have some questions to answer about why they put pressure on the Conference to accept Chester in breach of their own rules. Was this a misguided attempt to help the fans of CCFC? If so it has blown up massively in their face. All it seems to have done is prolong the whole sorry affair and allow SV another 6 months in which to attempt to offload the club onto someone else. Funny how the authorities always seem to get it wrong, sitting back when they should be intervening or sticking their oar in only to make things worse!

  16. Martin says:

    Dermot, the Conference Board recommending to its member clubs to expel a club at an EGM is the most they can ever do under their rules.

    The member clubs ARE the Conference.

    The process is in motion, just be patient.

    Good luck with starting again Chester fans. You’re going to have a lot of fun :)

  17. Martin says:

    Micky F, the precious 72 largely insolvent Football League clubs just need a working flushable loo.

    That’s why they pressured the Conference to take Chester in the first place under threat of pulling up their draw-bridge again.

    Their competition must have somewhere for failing clubs to go that will not kill them immediately. Sadly that is probably almost inevitable anyway these days (Boston, Scarborough, Halifax, next year Darlington etc.)

  18. Albert Ross says:

    A little unfair suggesting that Darlo will go under, although I have few doubts that they will struggle to even be a respectable mid table side. At long last they have an owner who seems to be trying to keep to a budget that’s realistic – this really is why they are struggling on the field – but at least they shouldn’t be running at huge losses. The stadium will always be a drain on their resources of course, but I don’t see them going out of business just yet…

  19. Martin says:

    Albert, whilst your naivety or loyalty is charming, have you considered what it costs to run that massive white elephant stadium of theirs? The electricity, water, rates and insurance bill must be crippling alone.

    They wouldn’t be the first relegated club to completely underestimate the competitiveness of the Conference.

    How are they different to other failing northern League clubs like Scarborough or Halifax?

  20. Albert Ross says:

    Martin – loyalty is not the issue, given I’m a Hartlepool fan!

    I’m not suggesting they will find the conference an easy league – anything but! – more that the signs so far are that the new owner seems to at least have a grasp of financial reality, something that neither of the two Georges could be accused of. The ground is a big enough problem for them that it will always mean that they will be at least a step lower than where their fanbase might be able to support them, and I’d argue that would see them battling to get into mid-table – their average attendance this season is equivalent to that of Stevenage who are 8th in the attendance table, and if they are winning a few games they might at least stabilise that fanbase in the Conference. The problem they may well have (as my own club do) is that the fans who are not “Core” decide instead to follow one of the Big Three NE teams, or just get a Sky subscription and follow Chelsea/Man Utd or whoever rather than support what’s on the doorstep. I don’t think they’d realistically survive lower than the Conference National, but I can see them surviving at least if they stay there.

  21. Kowalski says:

    Thanks for doing these, it makes it a lot easier to keep up!!

  22. Darren says:

    I have been reading the Articles of Association of The Football Conference Limited for 2008-2009. I assume they have not changed for 2009-2010.

    Article 7.1 requires an extraordinary general meeting to pass a special resolution to be called by at least 21 clear days notice otherwise 14 clear days notice is required.

    Article 5.2 provides “The members in a general meeting by a resolution passed by a THREE QUARTERS’ MAJORITY OF THOSE PRESENT AND VOTING may on the recommendation of the Directors expel a member from the Competition.”

    Resolutions requiring a three quarters’ majority are normally described as special resolutions. Therefore, the earliest the Conference could hold a meeting to consider expelling Chester City is, by my calculations, Monday 15th March. This is assuming that the notices convening the meeting were sent out today. The Conference teams will have played a further six games by this stage and will only have around 8 games left.

    Assuming all 24 teams attend and vote at the meeting then 18 clubs will need to vote in favour of expelling Chester City from the League. This means that if seven teams vote against the resolution to expel Chester City then the resolution will be defeated. Possible teams who could object include Mansfield (would lose 6 Points), Stevenage (6 Points), Tamworth (6 Points), Cambridge United (6 Points), Salisbury (4 Points), Altrincham (4 Points), Ebbsfleet (3 Points), Forest Green Rovers (3 Points) and Chester themselves!!

    This issue needs resolving quickly one way or another so all the clubs involved in promotion and relegation know where they stand. It is not acceptable to have say the Stags finish in the play offs above Luton or AFC Wimbledon and then have the positions changed at the end of the season when points are deducted due to Chester’s demise. It is similar to the situation when Leeds United were appealing against their points deduction a few seasons ago and Forest, Donny and Carlisle were wondering whether they would lose second place and the chance of automatic promotion. It will probably also create chaos for the bookies!!

  23. Martin says:

    I’m glad their new owner is more sensible so far and that’s a start.

    You can’t compare just averages because grounds and costs are so different. Stevenage have been building slowly for decades and even they make large losses.

    Smaller ex-League clubs don’t tend to stabilise in the Conference. They either get lucky and get back up pretty quickly (Torquay) or they sink without trace within a few years (Halifax, Scarborough etc.)

    The lack of a Conference TV deal with Setanta and the end of the Blue Square sponsorship will make the drop even harder financially than ever too.

    Good luck to them but I think it’s more than likely we will be having a similar debate about Darlington this time next year.

  24. gertcha says:

    Why do they need police presence at a game anyway? My team (St Albans) had very little to zero police at the games in the conference.

    Let all them players go and get a pub team to complete the fixtures for a peppercorn wage (expenses?) worked for Croydon a few years back (well they got tonked 13-0 every week but took one step back for 2 steps forward)

    There must be enough players / fans / officals that can transport a pub team to away games without the need for hotels / coaches

    At least they could see the season out then

  25. Wibbly Wobble says:

    Worth pointing out that in voting to recommend expulsion, Conference Board Members Forest Green, Ebbsfleet and Rushden would all suffer, being in relegation (FGR and EUFC) and promotion (Rushden) fights.

    This seems to be being missed in the dash to label everyone as self-interested.

  26. Martin says:

    They’d need police for the Wrexham game, obviously, and if the ground safety authority say they need them, then they do. It’s more to do with not being paid a penny this season too remember.

    With all due respect the Deva Stadium isn’t Clarence Park.

    No other club will have gained or lost anything as none of Chester’s matches would be valid anymore.

  1. February 20, 2010

    […] about the same time as the Chester story seems to be near it’s unfortunate epilogue, (See Twohundredpercent to catch up), the FAW were trying to keep up with the other governing bodies in “The Lack […]

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