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http://www.newsnow.co.uk/A/323733752?-11344

 

I’m sure we’ve all read with interest over the last week the debate about whether or not Rangers fans ‘deserve better’. I'm also sure not many fans would disagree with that sentiment even if the ‘campaign’ has so far been limited to media criticism without much constructive contributions thereafter.

 

Nevertheless, over the last week since the campaign was launched by the RST, much debate has been had surrounding the principle and the reasons behind it. Indeed, a cursory look at their statement doesn’t show much one can argue about. Our club has under-achieved for the last 8 years and it appears the same financial mistakes have been made (to a smaller scale) than in the early part of this century. Therefore, the RST are quite right to suggest ‘we deserve better’.

 

The reaction to this criticism has been most interesting. Everyone and their lapdogs have had their say on the subject – from wee Chick and big Mark to Walter Smith and Sir David Murray – even Davie Provan has had his say! The papers, phone-ins and forums have been full of talk about the issue and if the RST were attempting to garner publicity then they certainly have been most successful. But surely publicity wasn’t the sole aim of the campaign?

 

After all, if one does want the club to improve then simply complaining isn’t likely to gain the immediate support of the kind of numbers the Trust requires to further their credibility. Further, there have been valid concerns about the arguably premature way the RST have launched the campaign. No consultation with their members, no backing from high-net worth investors and no comments of support from their honorary members – some of whom are ex-players who would have added much weight to their argument. Couple this with a failure to offer any workable alternatives or solutions then the campaign is easily (if erroneously) dismissed or ignored by the majority.

 

I say erroneously because, again, their points of concern are valid. The club does need improvement, mistakes are being made and we are under-performing on and off the field. Therefore, it was most disappointing to read the reaction from key club figures such as the manager and chairman. Instead of accepting the criticism, taking it on the chin and admitting responsibility for the recent mistakes that have been made; more denial and deflection is the result. Deny the problems exist then deflect the issue onto ‘faceless’ internet supporters who are not real fans. Hardly a pro-active reaction when the evidence shows the club can do better.

 

The ultimate result of all this is further division and not the unity the Trust are struggling to provide. Tens of thousands of loyal internet fans insulted and the club retreating further into its shell won’t address Ã?£30million of debt and a 3 year wait for the SPL title.

 

How can we bridge this gap?

 

Well, as leaders of the campaign, the Trust should have expected this result and planned for it. They profess unity but seem incapable of delivering that. They themselves struggle to accept criticism and lack the solutions to increase their small mainly online sourced membership to a level where the offline supporter can appreciate and back their point of view. Not to mention achieve the primary aims they state on their website which seem to have been shelved in favour of a more militant strategy. As such they must go back to the drawing board and provide up-to-date solutions and suggestions for club improvement. References to a 2 year old 15 point plan are all well and good but how relevant is that plan in today’s climate? To pressure the club to improve, they themselves must do better – as must the other supporters’ organisations who are failing their members with under-performance.

 

Meanwhile the club must also take their hands off their eyes/ears and, just once, see where many fans are coming from. Acknowledge the mistakes, take responsibility and provide the improvement requested. Not all of that need take humble climb-downs, apologies or finance we can’t afford. It just takes hard work, imagination and ambition. And don’t forget that the people who have every right to ask questions are the ones that will be buying season tickets in a few months as well as the latest new strips. By all means argue their point but be strong and ask yourself if you can improve the situation. We’re not saying this can be done overnight but there should be a plan of action.

 

The same goes for the fans generally. We can mump and moan our way through games. We can complain about certain players being unable to take a set-piece. We can take umbrage at the club unfulfilling its potential. But, if we’re going to do that, then we should be prepared to examine ourselves and what we offer. Yes, we are the biggest investors into the club – both emotionally and financially – but if we want seats on the board or to own the club then these ambitions must be backed up by intelligent debate.

 

It is on that note Gersnet is launching a new project for fans to get involved in. Yes, we agree with the ‘we deserve better’ slogan but only on the premise that we help facilitate that in a positive sense. Ergo, over the coming weeks, we’ll have a series of articles from our writers discussing many of the concerns raised by the campaign and how these could be addressed. We've got great, constructive ideas we want to develop and present to the club and we're looking forward to debating them with you.

 

We’d also like all our readers to get involved. Comment on the articles using the main site software, join the forums to give your opinion and contact us by email if you’d like to offer more. To that end we hope this project will catalyse change while showing the club that ‘faceless’ internet supporters are capable of more than just sniping.

 

Keep an eye on the site for each article and we look forward to you joining the debate!

 

:rfc:

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lads (& lauren!), to call on a bit of group solidarity, if everyone reading this thread (who can) could just click the link, even just to click and close and read it here. it'll substantially improve the circulation by moving it up the newsnow ratings, and so everyone benefits. many thanks!

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Click the link and read the article.

 

Can't really argue with any of it, especially the 9th paragrpagh. I get the impression the SDM isn't listening to the fans feelings now or in the past. Possibly one reason why we all feel the way we do.

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I can't disagree with any of your main points Frankie, there should have been consultation before the campaign was launched. Perhaps the 'Murray Out' banner could have been kept for another time, it was too easy to link the banner and the campaign.

Tho' the biggest disappointment has been the reaction from OUR club, head in the sand is not the way to move forward. Lets hope it has planted a seed, and we may see a plan/strategy for the club to improve both on and off the park in the future.

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Absolutely spot on !

If you were to ask the management of our Club if they were more than happy with the way things are at the moment, what would their answer be ?

As investors,contributors,donors,sponsors,paying customers and supporters, we have every right to ask for " better " or at least explanations we can believe. (ie. the influx of players only a few months ago when the financial crisis was looming )

I don't think a change of management is the right course of action, at the moment, as those presently in charge know exactly what kind of financial mess we are in and why we are in it.

This being the case, therefore our "Captain of Industry" should be able to fix it with little collateral damage.

I still can't understand why SDM doesn't accept the fact that our situation is far from perfect and that is why supporters are concerned. After all it was he who pressed the panic button by saying anyone can go, even our top goalscorer.

I don't think for one minute that the RST have solutions to offer, all they want is for SDM to do it or find someone who does.

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Great article, Frankie.

 

We need those within the club and the fans' groups to put aside their agendas and find a way of working together. Egos need to be left at the door and sacrifices need to be made.

 

However I don't believe either side are willing to do that yet.

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Great article, Frankie.

 

We need those within the club and the fans' groups to put aside their agendas and find a way of working together. Egos need to be left at the door and sacrifices need to be made.

 

However I don't believe either side are willing to do that yet.

 

I think you may be right on this :(

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Great article, Frankie.

 

We need those within the club and the fans' groups to put aside their agendas and find a way of working together. Egos need to be left at the door and sacrifices need to be made.

 

However I don't believe either side are willing to do that yet.

 

True - will they ever be willing though?

 

Hence the reason for analysing the debate and looking for ways of getting round that problem.

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To expand a bit on what we're planning to do:

 

As it stands I have a few articles lined up from our writers which I intend to release one by one to debate each in turn.

 

1. An analysis of why the situation has got so bad and why protest may be our only way of obtaining real change.

 

2. A proposal for how the fans could be persuaded to by into a membership scheme to raise substantial funds.

 

3. An examination of Murray Park and some simple ideas on how to improve our youth system and extend our scouting reach.

 

4. How can our club's media/PR be improved?

 

5. Supporters' Represention - A complete overhaul of the Assembly.

 

I've also got a few more people interested from other sites in contributing - basically addressing the concerns in the RST's 17 point statement and combining them where necessary.

 

Anyone who is interested in writing an article on any of the issues that are not covered already above, please pm me.

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Guest Poetry_in_Blue

The RST made it clear that the banner had nothing to do with them, even though I have my suspicions about that. The whole idea of unity with a constructive approach is excellent and should be applauded, as the true Rangers fan will be represented.

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