COMMENT: How to lose fans and alienate people

Craig Turnbull, Multimedia Sports Reporter. @_CraigTurnbull
Craig Turnbull, Multimedia Sports Reporter. @_CraigTurnbull
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If the current Falkirk board wanted to turn what’s left of the remaining support who backed them – against them, then putting their name on Tuesday night’s statement ought to do it.

This was certainly not an attempt to win friends and influence people and the tone and language used in the statement suggested that the relations with fans, whose appeals for Craig Campbell and Margaret Lang to leave grew vociferously louder until a protest was held at the end of the season, are at an all-time low and perhaps the damage is irreparable with some sections.

The statement blamed the departure of CEO Campbell on the fans, accusing a “minority” of threatening behaviour and verbal and online abuse. It also claimed Campbell had brought in £1.5m worth of investment to the club. Falkirk fans though would counter that with the negative headlines from the axing of the youth academy, tapping up of Ray McKinnon and relegation to League One.

In a time when the club is in such turmoil both off and on the park shouldn’t they be trying to bring the fans and the community together to overcome the worst period in the club’s history for some time?

A little bit of contrition and acknowledgement for the massive shortcomings of the previous two seasons would probably not go amiss, instead the latest statement has provoked further backlash from the very people they should be trying to get onside so they can move on and start repair the damage.

Don’t get me wrong, there is no place for personal threats but releasing a statement like that – whether mutually agreed on departure or not – only serves to further tarnish the reputation of an entire fanbase who just want the best for their football club.