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Author Topic: To secure for the workers by hand or by brain…  (Read 181 times)

martin@

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To secure for the workers by hand or by brain…
« on: December 07, 2019, 09:45:22 PM »
“We want our Villa back.” That’s the cry/internet comment which invariably follows our latest defeat. We get it on the occasional banner. It’s a noble aim – it would be great to own the Villa. But I don’t think the shouter/typist/designer has thought this one through. For a start. what does ‘we want our club back’ mean? How would we get it, and what would we do with it once we got it?

I don’t suppose they really want a workers cooperative, or every decision decided by a show of hands, so what they probably mean is please can we have an owner who spends a fortune every season and win trophies – just like every club wants. It still wouldn’t be ‘our’ club though. It would belong to the owner and as such subject to his whims and fancies. He could stick up the prices to Chelsea levels, sell players, appoint his mates as executives and give his son a ten year contract; we wouldn’t be able to do anything about it.

We haven’t been able to do anything about it for many years. Villa were unique in that the events of 1968 meant we had a shareholder base that was predominantly rooted in ordinary supporters and were probably the closest thing to a fan-owned club that English football had ever seen then, or probably has since at the top level.

In those early years at least, the board had to bear in mind the wishes of us plebs. This came to an end in 1979, when Doug was kicked off the board and sold his shares to Ron Bendall, giving a controlling interest which reverted to Doug three years later. From then on, no matter