Gordon has urged the Tory Government to do more to support football fans and back a Bill that would give Blackpool supporters a greater say in the running of the club.
Labour’s Shadow Sports Minister Clive Efford has now introduced his Football Governance (Supporters Participation) Bill, of which Gordon is a sponsor. The Bill would give accredited fan groups the right to buy up to 10% of the club’s shares and when a club changes ownership, elect and remove up to 25% of the club’s board.
The Football Governance (Supporters Participation) Bill follows on from the Labour Party’s election pledge last year to give football fans more power in the running of their local club. A policy that received support from the Blackpool Supporters Trust, during its consultation period back in 2014.
In the debate that took place about his bill, Clive talked about the huge contribution of fans saying: “It is the fans who anchor the clubs in that tradition. It is the fans from those communities who have sustained those clubs over many years. Owners who turn their backs on that tradition will do so to the detriment of their football clubs.”
Touching on the situation at Blackpool, he added: “There are many examples of such communities coming together to protect their football club. At the moment Blackpool’s is fighting hard to get recognition from the owners to protect their football club.”
Gordon said: “I am really pleased that Clive highlighted the situation at Bloomfield Road and the efforts of supporter groups such as the Blackpool Supporters Trust in campaigning to give fans a key voice in the running of their club. I think this is something we urgently need at Blackpool FC if we are to resolve the ongoing problems and gap between the owners and supporters at the club.
“However I am really disappointed that the Government Minister who spoke in response to Clive’s bill failed to take up the challenge and opposed it. Nevertheless I, Clive and others will keep pressing on with these suggestions.
“And of course there is nothing stopping the owners of clubs taking up Clive’s proposals voluntarily. That’s what should happen at Blackpool and that’s why I continue to seek an adjournment debate about the situation at Blackpool in Parliament. Football clubs are more than just a business, they are hubs at the heart of their local communities.”