Blues: This Club Needs its Fans
Birmingham`s last game was absolutely fantastic, provided you`re a Sheffield Wednesday fan, content with the revenge wielding axe that was a 4-1 home win.
Fans of the Blues have had to endure some daunting results in recent times, 3-0 to Burnley in September, 4-0 to Leeds in October, 1-0 to Charlton in November, 2-0 to Yeovil in January, 2-1 to Huddersfield in February and now 4-1 to Sheffield Wednesday in March.
There is almost one crushing defeat every month for Birmingham and its toll seems to be showing on the fans; who largely have stood by the club through difficult times before.
Coupled with bad results is the ownership situation. Carson Yeung is still seen as the sinful owner holding Birmingham City so tightly he has squeezed the life and passion from the fans and club. It could be said that the previous statement is exactly true.
Yeung came in, enthusiastically and bought players with McLeish despite suffering relegation from the Premier League. I note the criticism of him for promising £50 million for players in his first press conference but I think anyone could see he was a very passionate enthusiastic man.
It turns out Yeung had been hiding assets gained through unlawful ventures and his assets have been frozen (thus in turn the clubs investment) since 2011. Unfortunately this co-insided with the club`s second relegation to the Championship under Yeung.
The reality is we accepted the owner when he bought the club, he was embraced hugely around the ground. So with that we have also had to endure the effects of receiving the benefit of the Carling Cup winning team with the detriment of the unlawful money it was no doubt funded with.
It is so surprising that someone involved in such high levels of crime would hold onto an asset he owns with upmost disregard for the fans that love said asset so dearly, right?
Yeung is self-interested and when that self-interest aligned with the fans interest it was all friendships and hugs from Brummie to Chinaman. Now they are different, I would go as far to say Yeung would not be welcome even in the warmest of blue households.
Enter the years of starvation, a smaller (but still quality) squad, go on to compete in the Championship under Chris Hughton. It went reasonably well considering some top players had been sold. Alas Birmingham`s one chance at financial salvation lost to the ages.
The snowball effect has since taken its toll and we find ourselves with a manager that is under resourced and at times having the rug pulled from beneath his feet. Whilst tactically I also criticise Clark, is this really the team he wanted to have this time around? I would say no.
Now we find ourselves at a point where the fans feel helpless, many stay away and refuse to buy any Birmingham City merchandise in protest. It is those fans that would rather see this club disappear into the history books.
A club with falling attendances and low shirt sales, would you buy that club? I know I wouldn`t. I would then see an expectant fan base that are to fall by the way side as a result of that nostalgic ideals of what Birmingham City used to be. By withdrawing your support for the club you have everything to lose.
Let`s say we fill St Andrews and fans as far as you can see are wearing royal blue and singing keep right on. The home win would come within weeks, as I have seen in my years down Birmingham, we have the potential to have a terrific atmosphere (even with Heskey upfront).
Now there is a club that makes money and thus in turn can support itself, maybe even reorganise and begin to trade on the transfer market and hold onto its best players..
The most important point, there would be a club I would want to buy, a team that has everything but a sustainable ownership. The club would begin to look like a bargain to a businessman, especially in its diminished state.
Get a ticket, wear your shirt, buy all the clearance stuff at the end of the season and renew your season ticket. Do not make your purchasing choices based on what might happen in the future (going down, Yeung never selling and Pannu still around) Buy tickets and shirts based on what we have now!
We are a Championship team, we are Birmingham City and have been since 1875, your father/mother/grandparents/future kids and generations will love this club as you have for years to come, so please don`t stop now.
Get behind YOUR boys in blue! (see you on Saturday for Reading at home).