Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Leeds United call on all football fans to support their fight for justice

The independent arbitration against the Football League's imposition of a 15-point penalty on Leeds United will be heard during the week commencing April 14.

The points penalty has been hotly disputed by Leeds who claim they had followed the League's rules in paying off football debts first. This was challenged by Inland Revenue and it prevented United from coming out of administration with an approved Company Voluntary Arrangement, as required by League rules, though the threat of legal action by Inland Revenue was eventually dropped.

It is grossly unfair for United to have been deducted 15-points this season for something that was beyond their control. They had already suffered a 10-point penalty at the end of last season when they went into administration during the last week of the season. This clearly rankled with many in the Football League and the opportunity to make Leeds pay was taken with relish and ratified at a meeting of League Chairman, including those in League 1, who clearly benefit from the decision.

With Luton and Bournemouth now in administration it is likely that they too will have trouble satisfying the Inland Revenue with the League's rules about paying off football creditors first still in force.

United are calling on all football fans to support their fight for justice. On it's website the club say they have been overwhelmed with the support of fans from all clubs on an on-line petition to Prime Minister Gordon Brown. You can log on to the petition here.


Stephen Glenn said...

Supporting a Club that has been through and come out of adminstration I can understand the frustration with the issues.

However, the timing with which Leeds went into to admin at the end of one season after relegation was already secured rather than holding on a two more weeks,to the end of last season does appear to many to be an attempt to circumvent the rules as laid down.

The result if the club had held off to the close season would have been a 10 point deduction at the start of this season, rather than the 15 for breaching the FA rules.

The alternative result if admin had been entered into earlier in the season rather than waiting to see if Championship status could be maintained could well have resulted in the CVA being agreed by all parties, including the Inland Revenue, before exactly the same Chairman carried on running the club.

In all possibility if entry into and exit from Adminstration had not both been headed by Ken Bates HMIR may well have looked on the CVA more favourably those avoiding the 15 point penalty.

Sorry the ball is firmly in Ken Bates court.

Anonymous said...

You are up your own arse.
Leeds have been the league's whipping boys for years, dodgy referees with strange retaken penalties, over the line goals disallowed, sendings off for kicking the ball away etc. They wont rest until we are in the conference league...what next a 20 point penalty for spelling Mawhinney slightly wrong and including these letters c,t,u,

Anonymous said...

i like donny rovers' chairman's pledge to take the fa to court if they go against the original decision to dock you 15 points.


Anonymous said...

Brainless Fib Dems.

Anonymous said...

Leeds deserve their 15 pts back. The fans shouldn't have to pay for Ken Bates financial 'prowess'; the rise in ticket prices for next season is an utter disgrace. Bates out, and the fans in!

A Fan said...

Sorry... you reap what you sow and the current position is the culmination of the greed of Leeds United. When they were in the Premier League and playing the likes of Valencia in the Champions League final 5 seasons ago, they spent money that they did not have based on income that never materialised as they failed to secure the Champions League spot for the following season... therefore missing out on income from ticket sales, UEFA and TV rights.

I feel sorry for true Leeds fans like yourselves. Having said that... Bates' actions have been cynical - putting you into admin last season when you are relegated already, barring a miracle. The 10 point deduction at that stage was no punishment whatsoever.

Add to which - by going in admin, the club neglected to pay a lot of its debts, some to local business, some of whom I believe went out of business as a result? Very community-spirited!! As I understand it, after going into admin.

The further 15 point deduction was ratified by 75% of the other 72 league clubs and Leeds signed an agreement with the FL agreeing to the deduction. Bates signed that as it was the only way Leeds would have been able to carry on in the league... What value is there in a club that is not allowed to play football in the league? Not much at all really....

Bates and Leeds now claim that this agreement was signed under duress and are campaigning to get their points back. After the great start to the season, when you had Gus Poyet still there... I did not see any talk of appealing to get the points back. It was only when Poyet then Wise left and Leeds went off the boil and it looked like they might not make the playoffs even that this talk of getting the points back seemed to gather speed... Coincidence?

As a Doncaster Rovers supporter, a team that was almost put out of business 10 years ago.

However, when we were at our lowest ebb, none of the other Yorkshire clubs batted an eyelid or offered any assistance. So you'll forgive me if I have little sympathy for Leeds' current plight.

I found the recent petition that Leeds ran on its website in bad taste. Ken Bates urged all football fans or all teams to sign up to petition Gordon Brown to have the points reinstated "for the good of the game", as if Leeds are some Robin Hood figure here to save the day for the whole of football. Bates even goes onto mention Bournemouth and Rotherham as other clubs in admin and that it "could be you next"... as if Leeds are acting in the interests of these other clubs... It's offensive.

The only club that would benefit from Leeds getting their points back is Leeds United, pure and simple.

I'm sorry, but if you do the crime, you have to be prepared to do the time, no matter what the circumstances are.

I'm not bitter at all. I think the decline of Leeds is sad. I went to university there and when I was a kid, one of the treats was going to see Leeds (when you had Sniffer, Bremner, Johnny Giles etc) -I used to have a soft spot for the team. But with Bates at the helm the club has becomes everything that is wrong with football currently - moaning, whining, not willing to accept the situation and maintaining some dignity and actually getting back to where you were by doing the business in the pitch, not trying to bend the rules off it.

Giving Leeds any points back opens up too many issues and I just hope, for the real good the game, it doesn't happen.