Appeal for Better Support – President’s Outspoken Statement

March 1922

Mexborough and Swinton Times, March 25.

Denaby United Football Club.
An Appeal for Better Support.
Presidents Outspoken Statement.

The management of the Denaby United Football Club are a good deal worried at the steady failure of the local population to give the support necessary to maintain football of the standard attempted. Almost throughout the season, the “gates” had been consistently below the level required for running a Midland League Club, and this in spite of the fact that the club has assembled a very efficient team which just furnished attractive games, and performed credibly in the competition.

A few days ago the management took the players and paid officials into their confidence with regard to the financial position of the club, and were gratified at the readiness with which they responded to a proposition that they should be a reduction, temporary it is hoped, of wages. They at once agreed to accept this reduction, in order to ease the task of the management, in carrying on the club. If the public support which the Club were promised, and had a right to expect, had been forthcoming, this expedient would not have been necessary.

The committee are very grateful to the players for the spirit that shown.

The president of the club, Mr H.C.Harrison has issued the following trenchant appeal, which includes a general statement of the position:

“Last year the position in the league was such that support was not encouraged as it might have been, and at the earnest wish of the loyal supporters, efforts were made to improve this position. This had been done, incurring greater cost, and the result has been less support than ever.

“Last year we had a bad ground, and the supporters clamoouredfor a better one. We made a better one, equal to any in the League. Again, more expense, and the same result, less support.

“At the Annual Meeting last year great eagerness was displayed to serve on the General Committee, and everybody was convinced that if we try to improve our team and our ground, we would improve our support considerably. We have done both, the support is worse – much worse. Therefore, we cannot rely on promises.

“Surely the efforts made by them Management and the loyal members of the Club in making these improvements should receive their due share of recognition. We have carried out our bargain: have the sport loving public carried out theirs ?

“Money has not be wasted.The wage bill is one of the smallest in the Midland league, and our other expenses are equally small. You are not asked to provide dividends are fat salaries, you’re only asked to provide a good football for your own amusement. You encourage others to do this and then won’t help in a small way to foot the bill.

“After all this, we have been obliged to approach the players to accept a reduction, and to forego their legal rights. They have agreed as sportsmen, and for the welfare of the Club. Surely the football public should do their share as well. We have six more all matches, and if the public will only support uswe can yet pull through. If they don’t, football in Denaby will sink to a very low standard, and all the efforts and generous local assistance of a few, will be thrown away.

“We want an average of 3000 spectators. No less will do, and this is not one third of the local sportsmen who profess an interest in the game and the welfare of the club.

“Are we to understand that you don’t want good football, and that you won’t keep your promises? Orhave we failed in anything and can anyone suggest anything more?”

To this very frank appeal may be added the following statement. The Midland league “Gates” at Denaby this season an average £30 below what might have been reasonably expected. They are £10 below the corresponding “gates” last season, when the team was performing badly. In the English Cup, although four matcheswere played, the Club only just held its own. On cup ties as a whole £75 was lost.