Vital Football

Latest Wigan Atletic News

Debt, Diving, Cheating and Wages Worry Fans

Debt, Diving, Cheating and Wages Worry Fans

The latest FFC survey results appear on page 64 of this months edition of FC Business magazine. You can read the online version is also reproduced below.

Many thanks for your support. The FFC Team

The Alienated Majority? by Jon Busk

Fans across the Premier League and Football League have deep routed fears for the future of the game, according to the latest survey polled by the Football Fans Census.

The survey, conducted at the start of July, covered just under two thousand fans and asked what they felt were the biggest issues, and also the single biggest issue facing football at the moment. The results give a stark picture of terrace attitudes to the modern game. The biggest issues worrying fans across the divisions are the financial stability of the game, and the spirit in which it is being played.

The single most important issue to the fans surveyed was the level of debt in football, while financial concerns generally dominated the findings. Just under thirty per cent of fans polled listed either the levels of debt, the wealth gap or players wages as the biggest issues facing the sport.

Tim Gentles, MD of the Football Fans Census, commented "This might be painful reading for the football community but it is clear that there are deep routed fears about the financial future of the game on the terraces. On the one hand, venerable clubs like Southampton are clinging on for dear life, and on the other, transfer fees and wages are rocketing, fuelled by the cheque books of the Real Madrids and the Man Citys. These tensions have clearly been transmitted into very real fears for the regular football supporter"

Not surprisingly, there is a difference of opinion between the Premier League and the leagues below. The biggest issue for fans of Premier League clubs, according to the survey, is the level of players` wages, with 12% of fans surveyed citing this issue above all others. For fans of clubs in the Football League the wealth gap between clubs and the divisions was the top ranking issue, polling 14% of the fans in the survey.

Interestingly, the standard of refereeing did not appear highly in the findings. Whilst the tabloids and pundits alike foam at the mouth at the man in black every new season, fans are clearly worried about other things in the game. The standard of refereeing did not even appear in the overall top ten issues listed by fans in the survey, while only 3.5% of fans in the Premier League who took part listed it as the major issue facing football.

So while Andy Gray and Alan Green are seemingly kept awake at night by the latest travails of Mike Reilly, fans, it seems, have a longer term perspective.

What the survey does also reveal however, is a significant concern over the character of the game. When asked to list the five most important issues facing football, the most cited one was cheating and diving, mentioned by 41% of fans in the survey, while 35% supported the notion that football is becoming a commodity rather than a sport.

The general picture then does not make great reading for those who actually run the game. According to Gentles, "There is a huge amount of anxiety and angst over what I`d call the soul of the game. A combination of the way it is being played - cheating and diving- and the way it is being run. This isn`t just the usual gripe from league clubs about the rich getting richer. This is a universal malaise affecting all levels of supporters. The game they love, as they see it, is under threat"

What fans will actually do in response to their fears is unclear however. The prospect of fans up and down the country forming their own equivalent of F.C. United is unlikely. That said, it is clear that the patience of fans through all the divisions is being tested to the limit by those in the game. The game they fell in love with is fast becoming unrecognisable.

What do you think is THE single most important issue in football at the moment? (one option only)

Top 10 - All respondents


Levels of debt in football - 10.1%
Wealth gap between clubs / leagues - 9.9%
Players' wages - 9.8%
Game becoming a marketable commodity rather than a sport - 9.7%
Cheating and diving - 7.1%
Lack of competition, too much predictability (big club dominance) - 5.5%
Ticket prices - 5.0%
Number of clubs facing administration - 4.3%
Not enough money redistributed by Premier League - 4.2%
Size of transfer fees - 3.7%

What do you think are the most important issues in football at the moment? (up to 5 options)

Top 10 - All respondents


Cheating and diving - 41%
Players' wages - 37%
Game becoming a marketable commodity rather than a sport - 35%
Wealth gap between clubs / leagues - 32%
Levels of debt in football - 31%
Ticket prices - 27%
Lack of competition, too much predictability (big club dominance) - 25%
Foreign owners - 23%
Size of transfer fees - 22%
Not enough money redistributed by Premier League - 21%

Many thanks to everyone on Vital Football who took part.

FFC


Bookmark and Share

Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football



Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Barry Worthington
Date:Wednesday July 29 2009
Time: 9:55PM

Comments

0
Most of the clubs these days dont give toss about their fans, but they will wake up one day and realise that the Arabs, Sky, and the property seekers, have moved on to richer pickings. That will be the day when they will wish they had hung on to everyone that has walked away from the game.
denno4
02/08/2009 16:15:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Wigan Athletic Articles

Meet The Ref - Latics v Barnsley - Tony Harrington

In what could be a feisty game the referee may have to be at the races to ensure that all stays fair, an experienced head is what is needed, instead we have rookie ref Tony Harrington

David Perkins - Vital Latics Player Of The Season 2015/16

David Perkins has been voted the Vital Latics Player of the Season 2015/16

No Cash Turnstile Available On Sunday - Bring On The Champs

The Latics will be receiving the League One Champions trophy this Sunday after the Barnsley game, it is the final match of what has been a truly entertaining and wonderful season

Yanic Wildschut In Team Of The Week (4/5/16)

Wigan Athletic are represented in the latest Football League team of the week that has been selected after this week's action.

Archived Vital Latics Articles

Vital Latics articles from

Site Journalists

Barry Worthington
Editor email
Profile
Dan Farrimond (JWAW)
no email
Profile
Adam Convery
no email
Profile
Frank Ford
no email
Profile
Noel Wards Leg
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Man Of The Match v Blackpool
Suggested By: David Sharpe
Jussi Jääskeläinen9%
Donervon Daniels0%
Craig Morgan0%
Stephen Warnock0%
Reece Wabara0%
Sam Morsy0%
David Perkins0%
Max Power0%
Chris McCann81%
Michael Jacobs0%
Will Grigg0%
Yanic Wildschut10%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
P Wigan 45 24 15 6 87 40
2 Burton 45 25 9 11 84 20
3 Walsall 45 23 12 10 81 17
4 Millwall 45 23 9 13 78 23
5 Bradford 45 22 11 12 77 13
6 Barnsley 45 21 8 16 71 13
7 Scunthorpe 45 20 11 14 71 11
8 Gillingham 45 19 12 14 69 16
9 Coventry 45 18 12 15 66 16
10 Sheff Utd 45 18 12 15 66 7
11 Rochdale 45 18 12 15 66 6
12 Port Vale 45 18 11 16 65 3
13 Peterborough 45 18 6 21 60 5
14 Southend 45 16 11 18 59 -5
15 Bury 45 15 12 18 57 -18
16 Swindon 45 15 11 19 56 -10
17 Oldham 45 12 18 15 54 -12
18 Chesterfield 45 15 8 22 53 -10
19 Shrewsbury 45 13 11 21 50 -18
20 Fleetwood 45 11 15 19 48 -6
21 Blackpool 45 12 10 23 46 -19
22 Doncaster 45 11 12 22 45 -16
R Colchester 45 9 13 23 40 -41
R Crewe 45 7 13 25 34 -35
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Wigan Athletic Results (view all)

Wigan Athletic Fixtures (view all)

May 8 2016 12:30PM : Barnsley (H)
Sky Bet League One

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.Moonay93
2.Whittleblue84
3.Thorpyness67
4.BrickLatic64
5.K-shine25
6.Ihaventaclue22
7.hindleymonwafc17
8.Lazysid13
9.scotdave13
10.loudmouthblue12