Manchester United have been accused of treating AFC Bournemouth fans with “contempt” after refusing to compensate away fans left out-of-pocket by last seasons’ fixture postponement.
The Cherries Trust, the newly-formed fans group representing AFC Bournemouth fans, is seeking compensation from Manchester United after their visit to Old Trafford was called-off due to a bomb scare – the device was later identified as a training device left in a toilet by a security contractor.
Thousands of AFC Bournemouth fans made the trip to Old Trafford for the final day of the 2015-16 Premier League season, only for the game to be called-off shortly before kick-off and re-arranged to the following Tuesday.
Supporters who had made the initial trip were given free tickets for the re-arranged match and Bournemouth provided free coach travel to away its travelling support.
“We do not believe that what has been offered is appropriate for the nature of the abandonment,” the Cherries Trust said. “We reiterate that the abandonment was totally avoidable and do not believe that Manchester United were without blame.
“The fact that a viable device had been on their premises for four days and had evaded security sweeps shows that their security was at fault.”
In their response to the Trust, Manchester United maintain that the events of the day were “outside of their control” and that providing free tickets to the re-arranged fixture was a “significant gesture of goodwill” – saying that such gestures are uncommon for unexpected postponements of major events.
The Cherries Trust are seeking recompense for travel expenses incurred, at around £100 per visiting AFC Bournemouth fan, or for Manchester United to propose a package offer for Bournemouth’s Old Trafford visit for the 2016-17 season.
“Once again, fans are being treated with contempt by footballing administrators,” the Trust said. “We’re asking Manchester United to consider the fans of both clubs that were affected by this abandonment.”
The Cherries Trust will be considering its next course of action after the conclusion of its own elections.
Thanks to Guts Gaming for the image used in this story. Reproduced here under Creative Commons license.