Why Are So Few Other Clubs Trust Owned?

Joined
Jun 30, 2014
Messages
966
Location
Portsmouth
Generally it is a crisis that causes a Trust to end up "holding the baby" at a football club in the first place. But in the absence of a sack of cash, a Trust-run club then needs a viable long-term strategy to work to, and a steady stream of willing and competent volunteers to pick up the reins when those who have stepped into the breach have to bow out for whatever reason.

I suspect many of the clubs who are no longer Trust-run had neither of those things, and have had to throw in the towel and sell up. It's been a tightrope-walk for City though - without the sale of Matt Grimes we probably wouldn't now be Trust-owned, or would certainly have needed some kind of external help. (We had to resort to PFA loans to pay the players wages that season). But of course it was the Academy-focused strategy adopted by the Trust that created Matt Grimes in the first place, so we kind of "made our own luck".

Our senior player recruitment does seem to be improving now, and so hopefully we won't have to rely solely on Academy graduates for transfer income. (Other than Stockley, I can't think of many signed senior players from the recent past who have earned good transfer money). But in the current squad, I'd be willing to bet that Sam Nombe has the best potential to earn us a Watkins-style windfall.

But it will continue to be a tightrope-walk, as we are running a fairly hefty operating loss funded by capital from Watkins/Ampadu/Chrisene/Storey etc so there's no room for complacency.
I've started a couple of responses to the OP but couldn't articulate - this sums much of it up. In our case (Pompey) the model was a bit different to yours, but the circumstances that landed us there were similar.

In our case, we got interest from a seemingly creditable outside investor showing interest within a pretty short space of time - so for many of our supporter-base it didn't seem like a throwing in of a towel, more an option to accelerate progress with relatively low levels of risk. Had that not been the case I expect we would have had to evolve our model and governance.

I'd have liked us to have continued down the route we were going; but also accepted that those investing in us seemed like relatively reputable custodians; and offered a degree of security that we didn't necessarily have under the previous model.

One of the reasons I keep an eye on here - and on City in general - is that I love what your Club does and how it does it. I can see it has it's own imperfections and challenges, but as a Trust and fanbase you've created something brilliant. I'll stick with that if you take six points off us next season.
 

Grecian in Guzz

Active member
Joined
Dec 10, 2019
Messages
2,100
Location
Exiled 40 milesish West
I've started a couple of responses to the OP but couldn't articulate - this sums much of it up. In our case (Pompey) the model was a bit different to yours, but the circumstances that landed us there were similar.

In our case, we got interest from a seemingly creditable outside investor showing interest within a pretty short space of time - so for many of our supporter-base it didn't seem like a throwing in of a towel, more an option to accelerate progress with relatively low levels of risk. Had that not been the case I expect we would have had to evolve our model and governance.

I'd have liked us to have continued down the route we were going; but also accepted that those investing in us seemed like relatively reputable custodians; and offered a degree of security that we didn't necessarily have under the previous model.

One of the reasons I keep an eye on here - and on City in general - is that I love what your Club does and how it does it. I can see it has it's own imperfections and challenges, but as a Trust and fanbase you've created something brilliant. I'll stick with that if you take six points off us next season.
As usual SOC for your kind words - hope we are in a position to play you next season let alone take points off you !
Play Up Pompey and shame you can't help prevent our 'County Cousins' from experiencing Play Offs.
 

Pete Martin (CTID)

Very well known Exeweb poster
Joined
Apr 1, 2004
Messages
10,750
Location
Here and there
Appreciate the list above isn't intended as definitive, and my take might not be seen as entirely impartial, but I think the media did its bit too.

The Echo was in a difficult position when Russell and Lewis took the helm – some people smelt a rat very quickly but plenty of others thought they deserved the benefit of the doubt – but, when push came to shove, the then editor, Steve Hall, weighed in behind the Trust. IMO the day you, Terry, Ian and Taggy came in to meet him at Echo Towers for the first time was a significant one. Kyunghee [RIP] also deserves plenty of credit for all the digging he did, in his own time, to expose the shenanigans of Russell and Lewis.

And a word too for David Conn, who shone a national spotlight on what was going on at the club, and Adrian Durham, who's TalkSport interview with John Russell was, for me, the beginning of the end.

And last but not least, I don't think ExeWeb's part in all this should be forgotten or overlooked. Others may disagree but I remain firmly of the opinion that without ExeWeb it would have been much more difficult, if not impossible, to mobilise against the gruesome twosome!
My memory is misty, but didn't Exeweb really come into it's own and flourish after Russell and Lewis shut down a fan's forum that originally existed on the club website?
 
Joined
Jun 30, 2014
Messages
966
Location
Portsmouth
As usual SOC for your kind words - hope we are in a position to play you next season let alone take points off you !
Play Up Pompey and shame you can't help prevent our 'County Cousins' from experiencing Play Offs.
I've got everything crossed for you and am keeping a keen eye on how things develop; it looks very much like three from four now unless someone implodes from nowhere. It's testament to what Matt Taylor has built that you've surged despite a few games where you don't appear to have named a full bench - I have to confess I wasn't entirely convinced by him initially; but his record since taking over from Tisdale is bloody impressive given it included last season where you were blooding so much youth.

Ultimately it's down to those who've delivered what your Club has become - and I know you've had plenty of bumps in the road to get there.

Obviously there are the obvious 'wins' in terms of Watkins, Ampadu, Grimes, etc. but actually - if you look at the shysters involved across the game; whether it's Newcastle/Man City; Derby; Crawley (possibly); Bury... the real win is that despite any low-level politics at Trust-level you've almost certainly got people who care about both your Club and the city it represents running the show.

Thanks for the PUP - you can be assured there's plenty of UTC coming from PO6 at the moment.
 

Egg

Well-known Exeweb poster
Joined
Apr 6, 2004
Messages
7,411
My memory is misty, but didn't Exeweb really come into it's own and flourish after Russell and Lewis shut down a fan's forum that originally existed on the club website?
Notwithstanding your memory is almost certainly better than mine, I'm reasonably sure you're wrong about this. I can't really recall a fans forum on the official website and am pretty certain ExeWeb predated the arrival of Messrs Russell and Lewis by some years. That said, I know a man who will know for sure so will point him in the direction of this thread in the hope that he can provide some clarity.
 
Last edited:

Egg

Well-known Exeweb poster
Joined
Apr 6, 2004
Messages
7,411
Last edited:
Top