Pompey Supporters Trust says fans face difficult decision on Eisner bid

THE Pompey Supporters Trust is calling on fans to remain united as details of billionaire Michael Eisner's bid to takeover the club are revealed.

Ashley Brown of the Pompey Supporters Trust. Picture: Joe Pepler
Ashley Brown of the Pompey Supporters Trust. Picture: Joe Pepler

Ashley Brown, speaking on behalf of the Trust, admitted this was a difficult time for fans as the future of the club’s ownership hangs in the balance.

Mr Brown said: ‘It is a shame this is going to be such a divisive issue among fans at a time when we want to be enjoying and celebrating promotion.

‘I hope that everyone remembers whatever different opinions people have and whatever the outcome is, we are all Pompey fans.

‘That is what makes this club so special.’

As previously reported in March Mr Eisner, the former chief executive of Disney, announced his plans to takeover the Blues through his Tornante firm.

In a dossier sent to fans today, it has been revealed the £5.67m takeover would inject at least £10m of additional equity into the club but there would be no fan representation on the board. Instead, there would be a Heritage and Advisory Board.

Mr Brown said it was disappointing for the Trust that Tornante had not been responsive to the concerns they had raised.

‘An example of one of our concerns was the added protection around the ground and the crest and the involvement of supporters’ representation going forward,’ he said.

‘Fans have to take the offer, have a look through it and decide for themselves.

‘The difficult thing for fans is that they are having to make this decision now and it has probably come as a surprise.

‘We have to take a look at everything that’s being put forward. Fans are being asked to make a judgement on a person they don’t know.’

On the investment put forward in the bid, Mr Brown added: ‘People hear the word billionaire and expect a new ground and multi-millions of pounds being invested.

‘Michael is being very careful about what he promises. To be fair, it is easy to make wild promises that will never be delivered - he is clearly not doing that.’

Next Thursday, Mr Eisner will be meeting with members of the Trust at Portsmouth Guildhall.

It will give fans the chance to quiz him on his bid and hear what he has to say in person.

Those supporters will then have their say on whether to approve a takeover through a ballot vote, opening on May 6 and ending on May 19.