One consideration during the hunt for new ownership earlier this year was their potential fan interaction, and while ideas like a “shadow palette” or “golden post” aren’t in danger of becoming a reality just yet, we do have one “fan forum” already. Where groups of supporters met the club. Cast on the Chelsea side included manager Daniel Finkelstein, director of operations Paul Kingsmore, and head of ticketing Graham Smith, among others.
That meeting actually took place in early October, not long after the sacking of Thomas Tuchel and the appointment of Graham Potter as head coach, but only the full minutes were published earlier this week. (By the way, the second fan forum took place yesterday).
As always, the minutes are an interesting read if you’re interested in the issues fans have raised with the club, but the part that’s probably the most relevant for all of us is the frequency with which the new owners see the club. None of this may be new information – especially after a couple of months – but here it is in written form again, which may add more importance and clarity to it. Obviously, it’s all just high level
The club was asked about the club’s vision in light of the sacking of Thomas Tuchel. One of the main aspects was reported to be recruiting the best young players in the world to help ensure the team’s future success. We are also looking at the multi-club model to circumvent issues arising from Brexit. We want the club’s departments to work better together. Granted, Thomas is a very good manager but the owners wanted to get along in terms of the club’s work. It hasn’t been about short term results so far this season.
It is clear that the owners want to spend big money on recruiting players and we have to be aware of financial fair play in the long term. Feeder clubs and young players are helping us deal with this. We got advice from Neil Bath on who to buy.
In response to a question, the club added that in addition to the forum, we are looking forward to having a shadow board as an official aspect of communication. However, the club also welcomes informal comments directly from fans in order to gauge a wide range of views. We have very good owners who want to build on the success of the Abramovich era.
There is a clear path to the first team from our academy as evidenced by the number of former juniors in the first team squad. Playing in feeder clubs also gives them good experience. Reece James’ contract was renegotiated early on because we want to ensure our best players stay here for the long term. It has been made clear to Armando Bruja that he will get chances.
The issue of rebuilding the stadium was also raised, with the club repeating what we have heard from Jonathan Goldstein elsewhere since then.
The stadium affair made headlines in The Sun and the Mail this week too, but it only works with a line of Chelsea owners’ full-year accounts (for the financial year ending 31 July) which were published in December. 5, about the owners’ commitment to staying in the bridge, which was emphasized in this fan forum as well.
The club said it was fully aware of the pros and cons of rebuilding standing or going out for a rebuild. She wants to take her time considering the financial ramifications as well as the implications for supporters. We have an obligation with the Chelsea owners to stay at Stamford Bridge and we are at a very early stage for such a big problem.
Chelsea Supporters Group
There is certainly a strong long-term vision, with more than enough financial backing to make it a reality. Let’s hope we make good decisions along the way.