Another fans view from the heart
In 2015 a young Welsh lady decided to write her dissertation on football fans vs customers and used Cardiff City fc as her model .
I found parts of her 11 thousand word piece to be unmissable reading and it may well be apt to many of us this week.
Below she interviews a local fan about his connection and commitment.
Its quality that I think we should all read. Well done Hattie.
Okay, this is Hattie Powell’s dissertation study of Cardiff City fans and I’m here with a season ticket holder, if you’d like to tell us about yourself…
Yeah, sure. I’ve been a season ticket holder at Cardiff most my life and I’m 23 now, so quite some time. Umm I currently still live in Cardiff, and I work part time…
So you’re from the area… In your opinion, do you think fans are satisfied in their relationship with the club?
Umm, no not really. The owner Vincent Tan doesn’t seem to care about us fans. We go to games every week, week in week out and it just seems like he does what he wants and I think that this annoys most the fans. Umm, he doesn’t consider where we come from, our heritage, it’s just you know, what he wants to do with the club.
Do you think this is the same sort of feeling for all fans, or do you think different types of spectators can behave differently, you know, especially in reaction to you know all the changes that have been happening?
Uhh, I really don’t think anyone likes the new owner, umm and what he’s done to the club. Uhh, I know that some fans that just tend to go to a few games and buy the shirts or go as ‘glory supporters’ when the teams at the top like when we got into the premiership and stuff like that… but I can’t really speak for them. To me they aren’t real fans, like the ones that don’t truly care about the club and the team no matter what… They’re the real fans. So yeah, I suppose the fans can act differently, like from my perspective, the changes made by the owner just really annoyed a lot of the
true fans and on the whole, everyone that cares about the club just wants him out really.
Yeah, so you sort of consider yourself a true fan?
Umm, so do you think the behaviour of some fans has, you know, can have an effect on other spectators? So, if we’re talking about protests, like ‘We’ll always be blue protests”, wearing only blue kits to matches or not attending games… Umm, did everyone follow this? Or was this just, you know, the true fans?
Uhh, I think the great thing about being a fan of a football club is that you feel part of something. It’s the people’s choice whether they go along with what the owner does or whether they choose to stand up against it. Uhh, but like I keep saying, people generally don’t like him. Like I said earlier, all the fans are different but, it was when we were united, and we were all now united and how unhappy we all were and you know since he’s finally recently started to pay attention to us and we got the kit changed back to the original colour.
You said the fans did become united in this, sort of against the owner, umm how do you mean, how did you feel united?
Like myself, we all stood up against the changes. Umm and like in how we acted at games, like we chanted or left matches early or didn’t go at all… This helped us control the atmosphere, and I think that’s what got us heard and got the changes.
So, do you think this has all come about, sort of because of the media surrounding the club and the changes made by the owner… sort of, to football in general, do you think this has changed how they feel about the industry or about how they feel fans are valued now?
I think the changes made by Vincent Tan and with all the newspapers and stuff and social media like Twitter made us look like a joke… All Tan seemed to care about was money and did what he wanted to the club.
Yeah…He doesn’t really understand that the fans are part of the club as well. The club and the players need passionate fans and I think people stop caring about the club and going to matches if the fans aren’t and don’t feel valued, or even part of football at the club.
Umm then yeah, hopefully that will change if we get the badge back, like it
has since the change of the kit back to the blue colour.
Yeah, so yeah, so sorry … Yes, I had other data from other research that found that attendance would decrease; fans said they would stop going because of umm all the changes happening and so their commitment could decrease and would… But do you think this is actually true? Like would you actually stop going? Would you give up the passion you have for the club over all the changes?
A lot of the fans were affected by the changes he made, like the kit and the change of the badge. It didn’t feel like it was our club anymore and people did stop going to matches. That all changed and It did all change when we got into the Premiership but now we are worse of and it all needs to be changed back or we will lose more fans. If he doesn’t live up to the promises it will make things worse for the club and the fans. There are definitely positive changes happening, with people coming back but it all needs to go back to how it was, in my opinion.
So do you think the owner is starting to care about the fans? Does he want to win them back?
Yeah, I think recently he’s started to realise how important fans are and we’ll all be against him until he changes the club back to how it was before. Umm if he doesn’t, then yeah I won’t want to but I will stop going to matches and supporting the club.