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Old 17th May 2005, 16:17   #1
RichG
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Default Reds must keep fight going

MEN - Tuesday, 17th May 2005

WAIT and see, wait and see, wait and see.

If I hear one more so-called Red on the telly or the radio telling me I should "wait and see" what Malcolm Glazer has to offer, the blood vessels will start to burst.

How long do we have to "wait and see" what this man is planning to do with our football club?

So far, he and his family have said NOTHING about their intentions. It is a display of arrogant contempt for United supporters that bodes ill for the future.

And yet the "wait and see" brigade continue to urge appeasement.

And too often these people, when asked about Glazer, begin by saying: "I don't really understand all this financial stuff, but ..."

If you don't understand it, don't comment on it.

Policy

We can see what Glazer brings to the club. First and foremost, he brings 540million of debt, to a club that had built its own fortune on the backs of a loyal and committed support.

He brings the hard-nosed tactics of American business, and he brings ZERO knowledge of what English football and its traditions are about.

And he brings a son, widely tipped to take on the responsibility for running the club, who insults our intelligence by claiming he and his family are "avid" United fans.

Oh, really, Joel? The contempt that statement contains knows no bounds.

Too many United supporters are shrugging their shoulders and giving in to the soothing words of the "wait and see" brigade.

Middlesbrough chairman Steve Gibson stuck his oar in, condemning supporters for burning effigies of Glazer and saying the opposition is "hysterical".

But far more worrying have been the words of people who claim to have United at heart - people such as Denis Law, Steve Bruce and Frank Stapleton, who all want to give Glazer a "chance".

The weak words they have been spouting stand no scrutiny.

Can any one of them tell us what Glazer brings to the table?

There is a myth that he has transformed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from a long-running joke to "Super Bowl winners".

But that tedious sport is such a level playing field, that law of averages dictate that every club will have its day sooner or later. You will find that the dog that had its day in the 2003 Superbowl is now back cowering in the kennel, among the other NFL also-rans.
Obscurity

And it may have escaped the apologists' notice, but United don't need rescuing from obscurity.

He brings "business acumen", we are then told. Didn't United already have that in bundles? They weren't the world's wealthiest football club by accident, but because they had strategies for making money from their brand.

Even Alan Sugar, a man who knows a thing or two about business, football, and the business of football, is at a loss to see how Glazer can further exploit the United "brand".

Turning Old Trafford into the Nike Arena, or a merciless ongoing hike of ticket prices - as has happened at the Buccaneers - seems to be high on the list of possibilities.

Of course, that matters not a jot to the "wait and seers" who tend to be people who get free tickets, or can easily afford them.

The longer the Glazers stay silent on their intentions, the greater the worry.

If we "wait and see", there may be nothing left to see.

Luckily, there are still United supporters out there who care enough about the club to keep the fight going.

That might damage the club in the short term, but it is for the long-term future. Think of it as lancing a boil with a blunt instrument.

The real supporters know that Glazer will only stay as long as there is money to be made, or until United collapse around his ears. And when he does go, it is to be hoped that there will be enough real United fans left to pick up the pieces.
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