1) The Blue Union, what’s it all about?
We’re a collection of Everton fan groups who believe that it’s time for change. We’re just ordinary Evertonians who believe that only a change in ownership can address the serious situation that the club finds itself in. Our focus at the moment is promoting the idea that a group of professionals should be appointed to identify new owners and conduct the sale.
2) Why is there a need for a collection of groups; why not just have the Blue Union?
All the groups exist independently as they have different objectives; The People’s Group campaign for change through demonstration and an active media campaign, Evertonians for Change promote their Fans parliament concept, SOS 1878 run their website whilst KEIOC are heavily involved in a campaign to develop an area in and around Stanley Park known as the Football Quarter.
3) The Blue Union is perceived as anti-board, anti-Bill Kenwright; won’t that put people off joining?
We’re not anti-board at all, we’re pro-Everton; we want what’s best for Everton and we believe that over the past decade the current board has demonstrated their inability to provide any deliverable solutions to the problems Everton face. We support the team but we oppose the stagnation that has become only too apparent.
4) You only want to criticise the current board; where are your solutions to Everton’s problems?
We don’t claim to be experts, we’re just ordinary Evertonians and many have offered advice in the past and it’s been ignored, look at Kirkby; millions of pounds and five years wasted. We appreciate that it’s difficult of course, how could Everton possibly tell the world that the fans advise them on operational policy? That would make us a type of People’s Club; we couldn’t have that could we? It would be like Barcelona, heaven forbid if that happened! Everton employ highly paid professionals who have failed time and time again to deliver the right advice; isn’t it amazing that fans of many other clubs have called it right when their directors have called it wrong? Could it be that the fans thought processes aren’t influenced by financial reward? This is where our idea of a fans parliament could offer solutions.
5) What’s this fans parliament?
It would be an elected body of representative fans that would discuss the real issues and concerns facing the club and its supporters. The members would be identifiable and contactable and the elected body would set its own agenda.
6) What’s the difference between that and the current fans forum?
New UEFA licensing regulations dictate that clubs liaise with their fanbase. Some clubs have elected to do this in a fair, open and democratic manner; Everton chose to hand pick their forum members and have them discuss what the club allowed them to, in other words it was completely controlled by the club; hence the vital discussions over playing z cars at half time and the opening of betting facilities after the game. Members of the fans forum are selected the fans parliament will be elected. It wouldn’t allow its agenda to be set by the club; it would set the agenda based on what the fans are actually concerned about.
7) I broadly agree with the objectives of the Blue Union but I don’t agree with the tactics, what should I do?
Join us! If you want to make a difference, if you want to influence those tactics and how the Blue Union conducts itself come to the next public meeting. We’re an open and democratic organization where your voice counts.
8) I think, under the circumstances, Bill Kenwright hasn’t done a bad job, why should I listen to you?
We’ve made it perfectly clear that this current campaign isn’t about individuals it’s about the issues. There are four members of the current board, three appear to do nothing whatsoever, whilst one is clearly running around fire-fighting. If you support the objective of successful change to catalyse the resurgence of Everton come and join us, your opinion is valuable.
9) Three people on the board own the club, they can do what they want, how can you make them listen?
We have a strategy designed to make them listen, they can do this the sensible and easy way or they can choose the hard way. We’ll take the campaign to the national press, the sponsors and partners, Barclays Bank, the FA and the government if necessary. The government will impose regulations on how the clubs cooperate with fans unless the FA put their own house in order by spring of 2012. The days of ignoring Evertonians who contribute over £20m every year to the club are at an end.
10) Okay, I’m convinced, what do I do to join the Blue Union?
Register with us through the website. If you have any skills which you feel would be beneficial contact us and explain how you’re willing to help. Doing nothing is no longer an option, get involved, attend the public meetings but above all keep supporting the mighty blues.