Filed: Friday, 27th May 2011
By: Phillip Marlowe
The West Ham United Supportor's Advisory Board held their inaugural meeting at the Boleyn Ground last night. Here follows a brief rundown of the main points discussed.
It was confirmed that the advisory board would meet quarterly and will be split into four focus groups. Attendees were asked to nominate on a preference basis what areas they were most interested in.
1. Matchday experience - covering hotdogs to half time entertainment
2. Olympic Stadium - what the fans want there; travel, food, seating arrangements
3. Replica kit/merchandise - merchandise/programme content.
4. Commerical: packages in relation to the Boleyn Ground and Olympic Stadium.
The vacant managerial position
David Sullivan advised the meeting that he had offered the job to one person at £1.25m per annum plus the same again in bonus payments - and been turned down.
He had met someone else who the entire board were happy with (and he reckoned the fans would be as well) but he thought the candidate would turn us down.
One player has been offered a wage that would be double the wage of the next highest paid player in the Npower to 'renew'. This is thought to be either Demba Ba or Thomas Hitzlsperger.
Zavon Hines has turned down the offer of a new contract.
Jordan Spence won't sign a new contract until he knows a). who the manager will be and b). that he will get a chance to play on a regular basis.
The Olympic Stadium
The vast majority of feedback sought was related to Stratford. It seems crystal clear that it is their main are of interest. We will not act as promoters for non-football events, we will act effectively as a landlord, renting out the stadium.
Ian Tompkins stated categorically: "To the inch, the distance from the front of the upper tier on the halfway line at Stratford is the same distance to the centre circle as it is from the mid-tier at Wembley".
The judicial review is not holding anything up at all.
The timetable is for the stadium to be ready by April 2014. The Boleyn Ground is up for sale - potentially to be sold as mixed retail/housing.
One of the questions asked by our hosts was: "How far would you be prepared to walk to the stadium?" My inclination is that there may be an issue with pedestrian routes onto the Olympic Stadium island - they clearly want people to come on the train.
There are only 200 car parking spaces at the new stadium. The club are negotiating to try and retain the multi-story at the top end of the site. The 5,000 spaces at Westfields shopping centre were not mentioned, but it seems we won't be encouraged to use them.
There was no word on whether there will be a walkway on matchdays between the car park and the stadium.
The issue concerning selling cheap tickets for less than the equivalent season ticket price was virtually glossed over - we were not given an opportunity to ask any probing questions on this.
However there were a number of comments regarding rewarding season ticket holder loyalty; I think Mr Sullivan and Ms Brady may have got the message that selling cheap tickets to fill the ground has annoyed many people.
The new away shirt was shown - apparently it's top secret. It won't fit me.
Ms Brady said little apart from 'goodbye, thanks for coming'. She looked fairly disinterested throughout; both her and Sullivan ducked out after about an hour.
Tony said he was happy in his current job. He looked slightly embarassed, which is understandable, but he was good value as you would expect. With regards to bright young things, he didn't want to name any lads in particular so as not to heap pressure on them but explained the process of player development.
Many people clearly felt the SAB is a worthwhile concept although few seemed to appreciate it is a requirement for a UEFA licence. I think some basic things will be acted upon as a consequence.
Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to, KUMB.com.
by g portugal
07:19AM 28th May 2011
''Some good will come from the SAB. It will help move the club forward and is evidence of the strength of the support base of the club.''
by Diesel Power
09:29PM 27th May 2011
''Please say they haven't offered Sam Allardyce the job when Ray Wilkins has said he and Ancelotti would like to come to West Ham.''
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