Brown dismisses Pompey conflict of interest

Matty Kennedy. Pompey 1 Southend United 0. Fratton Park. League One. Saturday, November 18, 2017. Picture: Joe Pepler PPP-171119-145411001

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Ashley Brown has dismissed accusations of a conflict of interest during Pompey’s takeover scenario.

The 47-year-old currently sits on Pompey’s board and is serving a second stint as chairman of the Pompey Supporters’ Trust.

In addition, the South stand season ticket holder was in October appointed chief executive of Supporters Direct.

Supporters Direct’s remit is to help fans gain influence in the running and ownership of their club.

Now Pompey face surrendering such an advantage.

But Mr Brown refutes any suggestion his position has steered his actions during negotiations with Michael Eisner and his Tornante investment group.

He said: ‘I don’t have a conflict of interest – that would be if I was likely to lose my job if a particular outcome materialised. That is not going to happen.

‘People talk about me being chief executive of Supporters Direct, well at Pompey we are going through a process where fans decide who the future owner of their club is.

‘That’s a powerful message for Supporters Direct, whatever the outcome.

‘The point is the fans are deciding. It’s not one multi-millionaire unknown owner deciding behind closed doors he wants to sell to another unknown owner from somewhere else around the world. The fans decide.

‘Conflict is where individuals have something to gain from an outcome, I don’t.

‘Since I’ve had any involvement in this football club, from six years going through the great big fight saving it to running it, I have made every decision based on Portsmouth Football Club.

‘Anybody that really knows me knows that’s the case and knows the likes of myself, Iain McInnes and others care passionately about this club. We will only make decisions we believe are in the best interests of the club.

‘Accusations of a conflict of interest does annoy me, particularly when it comes to people who know me and have seen me watching this club for 45 years or more.

‘I’ve travelled round the country as a fan, stood on the terraces in the pouring rain getting wet and seeing Pompey lose. I love this club.

‘People want to push a particular agenda and will do certain things to try to achieve that agenda.

‘I have to be very careful, I am not supposed to give a personal opinion, I am trying to represent what the Trust board have said in the information pack.

‘And I will defend my position without being conflicted because I’ll make the decisions on what is best for the club.’