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Malcolm Clarke sums up the NO TO GAM£ 39 Campaign

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

“It
is just 5 weeks since the Premier League announced its plans for clubs
to play a 39th game abroad. The response of supporters at all levels
has been loud and clear – that this proposal is wrong and should not be
allowed to go ahead, a view which has been widely supported in the
football media.

A
delegation of fans chosen at regional campaign meetings met the Premier
League to present our views. Thousands of fans have signed our on-line
petition and fans have organised activities aimed at their own clubs
and PL sponsors up and down the country. Some of these have taken place
whilst others are being planned for the future.

I
have met the new FA Chairman, Lord Triesman, individually to discuss
this. We produced a briefing document for the FA Council which you can
find in our press release section and, as the supporter representative on the FA
Council, I addressed the Council with the following on 11 March.

At
that meeting, and in my private meeting with him, Lord Triesman
re-affirmed the FA’s position that the Game39 proposal cannot proceed
for a range of reasons, including the effect on other competitions; the
effect on international relationships; the integrity and symmetry of
the league; and last, but by no means least, the opinion of fans.

I
believe that the large majority of the FA Council, the “Parliament of
Football”, shares our view on this issue. It has been encouraging to
note that the views of supporters has been one of the key reasons why
the FA has rejected the proposal.

We now have a voice at the FA; we are using it, and it is being heard.

We
believe that the Game 39 proposal is now effectively dead. We are
therefore calling a halt to the current Game 39 campaign in order to
enable us to concentrate on the many other issues of great concern to
fans.

However, we
believe that it is quite likely that the Premier League will come
forward at some point with further plans to play competitive games
abroad. If and when that happens, fans can rest assured that we will
oppose them again and lead a campaign to stop them.

I
am confident that, under the leadership of Lord Triesman, the executive
staff and Council members of the FA are serious about listening to fans
and would listen to us again if and when any further proposals are put
forward.

Let us be
clear. “It’s the fans wot won it”. We would like to thank all
supporters who have campaigned on this issue, which marks a new
development in supporters making their voice heard, and one on which we
must build. Together we can win some more.

Malcolm Clarke FSF Chair

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Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

Partners

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