Chesterfield FC protest organiser says Spireites fans' voice has now been heard

Lifelong Spireites fan Paul Goodwin, who organised a protest against the club's decline, believes their voices have been heard.

Wednesday, 19th December 2018, 7:21 am
Updated Wednesday, 19th December 2018, 8:23 am
Chesterfield FC fans demonstrate outside the ground before the match
Chesterfield FC fans demonstrate outside the ground before the match

A crowd of more than 200 gathered outside the Proact Stadium on Saturday afternoon over concerns regarding the running of the club.

Demonstrators gathered outside the ground prior to the FA Trophy tie against Basford United, which saw the Spireites run out 5-1 winners.

Mr Goodwin said: “I think, given the weather conditions, it was a significant show of support, or dissatisfaction, depending on how you look at it.

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“Word got out and we got wider press coverage as we received messages from Blackpool and Portsmouth fans in support.

“There was someone there with a Portsmouth shirt on who came to support us and even some Basford fans came and said nice things.

“We didn’t want to spoil their big day.

“But I think the vast majority of those who joined us wouldn’t have been going to the match. We were never trying to stop people from going to the game.

“Some good friends of ours went in, they were with us prior to kick off, but went to watch the match.”

And added: “I think our voices have been heard. People are now aware that a significant amount of the support base is not happy.”

Mr Goodwin, who runs the Bridge Inn Blues travel club, said he had no immediate plans for a second protest.

“I just want to support my club,” he said. “Saturday was the first time I’d been in Chesterfield and not gone to a game in 52 years. I don’t want to do that on a regular basis.

“My opinion is that the club needs new ownership. It’s not going to happen overnight and I don’t know how likely that is to happen, but if it can, it needs to be done before next season.”

A club statement said Chesterfield FC sympathised with the fans and understood their frustrations.

“The board of directors acknowledge the peaceful protest that took place before the 5-1 victory against Basford United FC,” it read.

“The board is totally sympathetic with the fans and understands their frustrations.

“The club is currently totally reliant on the financial contributions made by Mr Dave Allen and until which time the club is sold, it is difficult to change things.

“The door remains firmly open to potential new owners and the owner will consider all serious offers.

“We continue to support the manager and hope that the fortunes on the pitch are now showing signs of improving.

“This is a tough time for all of us and all we can ask is for you all to continue to support your club.”

The Board of Directors

CFC 2001 Limited

Meanwhile, The Bridge Inn Blues Away Travel Club again sponsored the Young Spireite’s Christmas Party on Sunday, following a request from the club.