Everton rebel fans ramp up pressure on Kenwright
Published 13:59 09/09/11 By MirrorFootball
An Everton pressure group who have organised a march on Goodison Park before tomorrow's match against Aston Villa have called for "historic change" at the club.
The Blue Union, a fans' collective who have grown frustrated at the lack of progress in finding a buyer for the Toffees, have published an open letter to chairman Bill Kenwright pleading for drastic steps to be taken.
Last night Everton chief executive Robert Elstone sought to quell the fans' protest by insisting the club had the right people to be able to sell the club and it did not require the appointment of an autonomous group to take over the process.
However, the Blue Union have stepped up their PR campaign with the release of a letter to Kenwright.
"We believe the time has arrived to initiate a change at Goodison Park," it read. "Not simply a change for change's sake, we're proposing an historic change, a change that will act as the catalyst for Everton, our manager and our players, to once again have the opportunity to become a truly competitive force in English top flight football.
"We would like to clear up a misconception; nobody believes there's a magical solution to Everton's financial situation.
"Nobody believes there's a stockpile of money or that every penny possible hasn't been used for the benefit of the team.
"All Evertonians appreciate that football is a competitive business where owners are responsible for the delivery of funds to the manager through either personal investment or successful and cohesive commercial strategies.
"A decade-long search for investment has proved fruitless.
"What remains inescapable is that during this time Everton's business performance has resulted in a fundamental decline in the financial position of the club; specifically, a massive reduction in the balance sheet position, a substantial increase in debt and a real decline in operating profit.
"During this period Everton's broadcasting income has increased by over 300% yet when it comes to developing our commercial income it is the inability to address the key issue of the stadium that has left us trailing in the wake of our peers.
"The consequence, of all of this, is there for all to see; despite protestations to the contrary, our club is unable to support our manager and therefore our team.
"At a time when over £485million was spent by other clubs investing in their core business activity, football, it is shameful that not a single penny was spent by Everton."
The letter added: "Nobody can refute that attempts to improve our financial performance haven't been undertaken.
"Strategies, that have been implemented, by a succession of CEO's, include, the sale of assets, borrowing, selling a percentage of the club, two potential ground moves and a proposal to build a new commercial centre at Goodison Park.
"The first two have been acknowledged as unsustainable and clearly cannot address Everton's underlying financial problems, whilst the remainder have all failed to materialise.
"Many see the failure to deliver the truly world class King's Dock stadium as the greatest missed opportunity in Everton's history.
"Others now see the pursuit of the unfathomable, undeliverable and unsuitable Kirkby stadium as the greatest mistake by an Everton board in over 130 years.
"Mr Chairman, as a fellow Evertonian, we think you of all people will agree that football clubs are far more than a business; they're cultural assets and their owners are mere custodians who have a responsibility not only to the business but also to their fans.
"With this in mind we would ask you to have the courage to accept that the performance of the current board has fallen far below that which is required."