Your basket

Join The FSA

Charlie “Charles” Sale – RSVP

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

Here at FSF HQ we were flicking through the morning’s papers and stumbled upon an intriguing piece in the ever-lovable Daily Mail by everyone’s 27th favourite diarist Charlie Sale, who has been having a pop at our esteemed chair, Malcolm Clarke. Someone’s obviously been twisting his ear.

A little background first. Malcolm joined the FA Council in September 2007 along with representatives from the Professional Footballers Association and League Managers Association. All three groups were long overdue a place on the FA Council which had been running for more than 140 years without supporter representation. Although the army, navy, air force, and Oxbridge universities have always had their representatives, we’re sure you’ll be relieved to know!

Anyway, as Charlie points out, some (not all, we hasten to add) FA Council members are a little uncomfortable that Malcolm has a point of view.

“Clarke, a council new boy following the Burns Report recommendations, asked for FA advice on council protocol. He was told to keep his head down for a couple of meetings. Instead he was on his feet laying down the law after five minutes – and he hasn’t stopped since,” says Charlie.

We’d question Charlie’s definition of “new boy” – Malcolm’s been on the FA Council for almost two years now – but nevertheless would like to thank him for this crucial piece of investigative journalism.

In the past two years Malcolm has spoken out at FA Council meetings against Gam£ 39, pro-diversity (of the FA Council’s 120-odd members only four people are not white males), for greater financial transparency in the game, and argued that we should protect playing fields for the next generation.

Charlie really should let us know which of these issues he finds tedious and we’ll ask Malcolm never to mention them again. We even popped him an email to say as much but never heard back.

We’re sure our 145,000 members will find it shocking that the FSF chair would have the temerity to represent and give voice to their views – it’s not like he’s elected to do just that, is it?

This astounding nugget of information has come as a hammer blow to the FSF who fully expected Malcolm to sit in absolute silence for at least five years on the FA Council. Maybe in the sixth year he could ask for Charlie’s mobile number to have a bit of a gossip.

We salute you Comrade Sale!

Related Articles

Charlie Williams: Rovers remember pioneering black player

Doncaster Rovers fans have created an exhibition to remember club cult hero Charlie Williams. We spoke to FSF deputy chair & Viking Supporters Co-operative‘s Martin O’Hara about why they wanted to celebrate his life…

Wembley sale a “short-term play” says Neville

The sale of Wembley to fund grassroots football would be a “short term play” and not improve community access to football in the long run, according to former-England defender Gary Neville.

Supporter consultation on Wembley sale – have your say!

The FA Council is due to vote on the potential sale of Wembley later this month – and supporters are being asked to have their say on the controversial proposals.

The Wembley sale: what did fans think?

Yesterday it was announced that the Wembley sale, which was due to be decided upon by the FA Council later this month, had been called off after the offer was withdrawn.

Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund


  • Gamble Aware
  • Co-operatives UK
  • FSE
  • Kick It Out
  • Level Playing Field
  • Living Wage Foundation
  • SD Europe