Pompey fans to attend football parliament talks

The Pompey Supporters Trust in bouyant mood at a press conference  last August outlining plans to save the club. (left to right), associate director Eric Coleborn, former player Ray Crawford, Penny Morduant MP, Ashley Brown, Mick Williams, Iain McInnis, and trust advisor Antony Fanshawe.'Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (122568-9)
The Pompey Supporters Trust in bouyant mood at a press conference last August outlining plans to save the club. (left to right), associate director Eric Coleborn, former player Ray Crawford, Penny Morduant MP, Ashley Brown, Mick Williams, Iain McInnis, and trust advisor Antony Fanshawe.'Picture: Ian Hargreaves (122568-9)
Pompey and Fulham drew 3-3. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey boss disappointed not to get victory

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MEMBERS of the Pompey Supporters’ Trust were due at parliament today for a football governance event chaired by Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt.

The event was organised by Supporters Direct, a group that promotes the value of fan and community engagement within football clubs.

Up to 60 MPs were due to attend to encourage the government to reform governance rules in the UK.

Supporters Direct wants the FA to include a rule as part of the new football club licensing arrangements that guarantees a structured relationship between supporters and clubs.

It urges the Department for Culture, Media & Sport to establish a government expert group before the start of next season to explore ways to removing barriers to increased supporter share ownership in their football clubs.

It comes as a Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee report warned English football that necessary reforms need to be made within 12 months or it could face possible legislation.

Trust chairman Ashley Brown has backed Supporters Direct’s demands that football regulators and the government work together to ensure fans’ interests are the forefront when ownership of clubs is being considered.

Mr Brown, who was scheduled to attend the event, said: ‘Supporters Direct has been hugely supportive of our own efforts and we are pleased to see Penny taking such a prominent role in ensuring good football governance is promoted.

‘The trust supports the three key aims of Supporters Direct.

‘The one closest to our hearts at present is the urgent need to establish a government expert group to explore methods of removing barriers to increased collective supporter share ownership in football clubs.

‘While this move may be too late for our own bid, which we aim to complete within the next month, there is still a pressing need to simplify the ways in which supporters can take an interest in how their club is run.

‘We also back the inclusion of a requirement in the league rule books that guarantees a structured relationship between supporters’ trusts and other supporters’ groups and clubs, as well as their call to designate sports stadia as assets of community value.

‘The trust is keen to work alongside Supporters Direct, the government and football authorities to find ways to make all of these aims a reality.’