Fans Views – How it’s affecting us
Supporters recently were asked how they felt about the Venky’s ownership and what the last six years felt like, their answers are utterly saddening and evidently underline that much more than a club is being destroyed, the Fans views can be found below:
“Rovers were my first love sixty years ago before I discovered music, alcohol and the opposite sex. Relationships, jobs, houses, hobbies – all have come and gone. Rovers have been the one constant for me in all that time. The sense of loss I feel at the moment is almost impossible to put into words”.
John Clarke -16.02.17
“I became a fan of Blackburn Rovers when old enough and in every sense when we were last in the Championship (Division 1 then), the fans, those like John Williams and everyone associated with the club felt like “One”. Having prior to Venky’s rocking up only spending two years out of the Premier League existence away from it, I took a great sense of pride in supporting such a well ran town club living within its means and the great work what took place in the local community which I personally witnessed, the pride of everyone associated with the club oozed through. The last six years have been soul destroying and I recently gave up my season ticket as I can’t associate myself or feel the same way as I once did with the owners now dismantling the club systematically with there associates. The club needs to be cleansed and put back into good hands, the M65 has never been so far apart”.
Jon Hunt – 15.02.17
“The last six years have, for the majority of Rovers fans been really difficult due to the sheer incompetence of the alleged owners Venkys. The mismanagement, disregard and disrespect shown to us has resulted in thousands of fans withdrawing their support of all things Rovers. I, my family and close friends are included in this number and it was not a decision we took lightly. To give up something that has been a source of pride and pleasure for decades was difficult but generally we all felt that we couldn’t contribute to something we largely believed to have more than a whiff of corruption about it. Probably the main source of our anger and frustration was the feeling of helplessness as the club is regressing rapidly. I know it’s my decision not to go but I honestly feel like I have had something valuable stolen from me and the thieves seem to be getting away with it. I long for the day when the club is cleansed of these people and their associates and we can return to feeling part of something special again”.
Tony – 15.02.17
“Twenty Six years ago last September, I held my first born, Simon in my hand in Queens Park Hospital. I was full of emotion having become a Father for the first time and carried him over to the window, in the delivery suite. With tears of joy falling down onto him, I held him up so that he was effectively in view of my beloved Ewood Park. I told him of the fun we would be having together and how much of that would be centred on going to watch the Rovers. Over the 26 years of his life, he has become as big a fan as me and experienced the club winning the Premier League and League cup. We have shared that special bond of supporting our home town team together. Sadly, the last six years have seen us both give up our season tickets and we no longer attend matches. Although we both still see Rovers as a big part of our lives, neither of us can support what Venky’s have done to the club”.
Carl McGovern – 17.02.17
“Ever since I was 5 years old I have been going down to Ewood Park to watch my beloved Blackburn Rovers. I’ve had a season ticket ever since and it gave me something to look forward to every week. Now however, I am extremely close to giving it up, I simply can’t continue to fund something which feels so corrupt. My weekends are now spent going to Ewood Park as a chore and coming away feeling depressed at what it once was and now what it has become (A shell). It is down to us to protect this legacy and something HAS to be done by The FA to save not just our club but others such as Blackpool, Charlton and Coventry”.
Matt McDonough – 16.02.17
“I’ve been a supporter for over sixty years and seen relegations, seen promotions from the third league to when we won the premier league. I’ve also seen us win the League Cup and visited Wembley in the heady days even when we were losing in the semi-finals of the FA Cup it never made me feel as sick as I feel now supporting the Rovers, I’ve had the passion ripped out of me since Venkys took over, now sixty seven I want to see my beloved club back in the premier league but whilst the Venkys are in charge it will never happen, it’s time for the Venkys to hand back the club before any more damage is done, Rovers till I die”.
Alan “Birdy” Birkbeck – 17.02.17
“You expect ups and downs as a supporter. It’s what makes it so special. The good times are like nothing else, and when the bad times roll around there is always the hope that things will get better. That’s what Venky’s have robbed me of. Hope. There is none of the excitement for 3pm on a Saturday these days, just a depressing, hollow feeling knowing that we are in the midst of a downward spiral that shows no signs of stopping. The club is a husk of its former self. I’ve never felt so disconnected. It’s heart-breaking. The pride I used to have in being a Rovers fan has been replaced by anger and resentment at the knowledge that possible irreparable damage has been done for generations to come through the sheer negligence, incompetence and arrogance of people who will never understand what it’s like to be a football supporter. The only way any semblance of hope will return is to get Venky’s out!”
Duncan Miller 16.02.17
“My feelings about Blackburn Rovers Football Club are of a tale of betrayal, mistrust and ineptitude. Even ignoring the rumour and speculation, it is clear that the owners have no idea of what it takes to run a football club. As with any custodians, there is a great responsibility to run the club with the fans and the community at the heart of every decision. Meanwhile, at Rovers every decision seems to have been made with, at worst, the intention to alienate and disenfranchise the fanbase and, at best, in complete ignorance of them. A bipolar reaction to managers, with backing given to failing ones, no support to honest ones; their utter contempt summed up by the clear change in approach over the Paul Lambert situation: bringing in their first credible manager, only to oversee the sale of our biggest playing assets to then not invest any money back into the playing squad. My feelings are not of hate for poor absentee owners, that have passed. My feelings are for the loss of what we were, not 25 years ago but 6 short years ago – an honest club, working hand-in-hand with fans, with the sole purpose being a collective goal of ambition, effort and success on the pitch, and affordable football for the fans of it. The true spirit of Arte et Labore (the latin club’s motto). My feelings are of sadness and of regret that my children may not have a league club to support in their home town and their children may not have a club at all. The current owners have given up on us, not that they ever really tried anything else. Now we are on our own”.
Stuart A 16.02.17
“All my life I have been a fan continuing family support for BRFC. Originally born in Blackburn, live in Blackburn this club is my life and a massive part of OUR town and community. I have held a season ticket for 35 years, but this is my last until these owners sell the club. It hurts like mad to see the neglect that the owners show to the club and its supporters to let this happen. The ignorance of these people (the Rao family) that they can’t even bring themselves to communicate with the FANS is beyond belief. I have in my lifetime lived the dream with OUR football club seeing them win the Premier League, League cup, been on numerous ventures into Europe and beyond, Semi-finals of all cup competitions and 4 visits to Wembley and 2 visits to Cardiff. But enough is enough it breaks my heart to see the life and soul of this club being ripped apart by people who don’t know what they are doing. This club is always in my heart and when they go I will return. Rovers till I die VENKYS OUT.
M Bettaney 16.02.17
“Venkys reign has been one of terror. A shambolic charade from start to finish. Watching Rovers was the highlight of my week, for over 30 years. Now, I find myself boycotting, in the hope that the owners someday soon do the right thing and sell up. I don’t hold out much hope that they will, as they haven’t done anything to benefit the club in 6 years. They are a disgrace to their family name and they should feel shame”.
Michael D 16.02.17
“HOW have Venkys affected me and my family? I am of third generation of Rovers supporters with my daughter being the 4th and grandson being the 5th. In thirteen years we will have collectively achieved one hundred years IF the club has survived. A town club has to be well run to have great success which the Rovers had, especially in my lifetime. We have always been a true community club pulling together and proud of our team. The last six years has been the opposite of this which has corroded our supporter base, removing any hope and leaving us bereft of information consistent strategy, clear direction any anyone linked to supporters or plugged into our fears. It feels like managed decline but is probably incompetence or sheer lack of interest. This is why (WE) I and others protest; we would be the ones left without OUR football team, what would be the legacy then left to future generations?
John Murray (Rovers Trust Chairman) 17.02.17
“Venkys ownership of Blackburn Rovers has affected me deeply. Through their negligence, abject mismanagement or worse, intentional managed decline, my love for the club is slowly fading. I still hold a season ticket, have for most of my life now, but I fear this season may be my last. Indeed trips to Ewood have become akin to visiting an elderly relative in the latter throes of dementia. The ground looks the same, there’s still a pre match pint, the teams still run out to the final countdown, but you know there’s something malicious eating away and it will only get worse in time. It’s simply not the same, a shell of the club I remember, and I fear it will likely never recover. Whilst fond memories are never far away, the sadness and sense of helplessness that now infuses each and every match day has drained all of the child-like enthusiasm that drove my love for the club. At a time when I should be introducing my 11 year old to the joys of watching this famous club, I find myself barely able to find the motivation to go along myself. The club is fighting for its very existence; it is ill with the disease that is Venkys, and it hurts”.
Andrew R 17.02.16