UK time is: 01:19:58
Vital Login
Social Login

Choose your club

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Debt, Cheating, Diving 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


Vital Football are currently looking for a site editor for this site.

Have you got the passion for your club? Are you over 18? Do you have experience in writing news and match reports? Or have you got a site that you want to move over to this exciting new network with free hosting and a content managed system on offer? If so you could be just what we are looking for!

Apply To Be A Site Editor

You don't have to be a site editor to contribute, if you have something to say on your club, simply submit it via the suggest an article link in the right hand side column.

To join our Championship Fantasy Football game in partnership with 442 and the Telegraph: Click Here.




Use your social login to comment on front page articles. Login using you Facebook, Twitter, Google or LinkedIn accounts and have your say!

The Journalist

Writer: Site Staff Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday July 30 2009

Time: 10:13AM

Your Comments

This survey hits the nail right on the head. The big clubs are not being fair to their fans.
denno4
We will probably see a lot more clubs going into administration in the coimng seasons. Players are paid far too much attendances are slowly going down. Not good,
miked_joker
 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Exeter City Articles

Tisdale Delighted With Changing Fortunes (Monday September 29 2014)

Stats: Exeter v Bury (Saturday September 27 2014)

Nicholls Signs For Another Month (Friday September 26 2014)

Tisdale Praise For Two On The Bounce (Monday September 22 2014)

Stats: Tranmere v Exeter (Saturday September 20 2014)

Big Goal for Nicholls (Thursday September 18 2014)

Noble Delighted To Return (Thursday September 18 2014)

Tis - Good Response To Mansfield Loss (Thursday September 18 2014)

Stats: Cambridge v Exeter (Wednesday September 17 2014)

Stats: Exeter v Oxford (Saturday September 13 2014)

Archived Exeter City Articles

List All Vital Grecians Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

League Results (view all)

Latest Results
Exeter 1 - 1 Oxford
Exeter 1 - 2 Mansfield
Exeter 2 - 1 Bury
Exeter 1 - 1 Portsmouth
Northampton 1 - 0 Exeter
Tranmere 1 - 2 Exeter

League Table (view table)

Team P W D L GD Pts
14. Plymouth 10 4 1 5 3 13
15. Accrington 10 4 1 5 -5 13
16. Newport 9 3 3 3 1 12
17. Exeter 10 3 3 4 -3 12
18. Dag & Red 10 3 2 5 -4 11
19. Cambridge 9 3 1 5 2 10
20. Tranmere 10 2 3 5 -2 9

Breaking League News

Admirers 'monitoring' Butler
Portsmouth : 01/10/2014 22:13:00
Smith Ready For Battle
Wimbledon : 01/10/2014 21:00:00
Pools Lowest League Positions For Many Years
Hartlepool : 01/10/2014 20:57:00
Earning Your Keep
Carlisle : 01/10/2014 20:52:00
Leonard Back In Contention
Southend : 01/10/2014 20:44:00

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Bury MotM
Suggested By:  Site Staff
Pym 0%
Bennett 0%
Oakley 0%
Butterfield 0%
Nicholls 0%
Moore-Taylor 0%
Sercombe 0%
Ribeiro 0%
Grimes 0%
Cummins 0%
Davies 0%
Sub - Nichols 0%
Sub - Keohane 0%