No civil war on 1904.
On Monday evening during the West Ham game, the singing of “City Till I Die” on 19 minutes and four seconds was met by sporadic booing from some sections of The Circle. The booing led to arguments between fans at the game, and on message boards and fans’ forums afterwards. This was particularly disappointing, given Steve Bruce’s plea ahead of the game for the fans to unite behind the team.
City Till We Die were appalled and saddened by the booing. When we chose to publicise and energise our campaign against owner Assem Allam’s plan to change the historic name of our club, we chose a song sung at a time that demonstrated our commitment to our club, our city and our history.
“City Till I Die” is a song that has been sung by Hull City AFC supporters all over Britain, Europe and the world, for more years than any of us can remember. We chose to do this in line with our campaign aims of always positively supporting the team as we attempted to protect the club’s name. We knew we had been successful in this when club Vice Chairman Ehab Allam said on Radio Humberside earlier this year that he enjoyed hearing the 19:04 singing, as it was the loudest and most enthusiastic our home support ever became.
The name change campaign ended on April 9th when the FA voted overwhelmingly and unequivocally to accept the recommendation of their Members Committee that our club would retain the name Hull City. Since that point we have not asked fans to sing “City Till I Die” on 19:04 as the campaign has ended, in success. We make this point as it seems likely that the booing has been provoked by Assem Allam’s press conference last week, in which he repeated previously made claims of initiating legal action and of using various appeals processes against the FA’s decision. City Till We Die was disappointed to hear this, but believe it changes nothing.
The club first talked of making an appeal in March before the FA had even made their decision. The FA has no appeal process for this type of decision and their process – taking evidence from the Club, the East Riding FA, the Hull City Official Supporters Club and City Till We Die, as well as local and national elected politicians – was clearly fair and equitable. City Till We Die therefore believe the name change debate is over.
We are now putting our energies into setting up a Supporters Trust, in line with the wishes of our members.
Though we are no longer campaigning, we’re not surprised that fans have continued to sing “City Till I Die” on 19:04. Like Ehab Allam we believe it has enhanced support for Steve Bruce and the team. We know that a lot of fans sing this to celebrate our historic identity and our current success. It is not an anti-Allam song. It never has been. Because City Till We Die have never been an anti-Allam organisation. But we do ask all fans, whether you sing at 19:04 or whether you don’t, to respect your fellow Hull City fans.
Sing whatever you like to support the manager and the team. But please don’t boo. We hope that means that all of us, the fans and the club, can move on together, supporting our team loudly and passionately, everywhere we go, as our football adventure continues. We want to enjoy supporting our team. We want no civil war on 19:04.
City Till We Die Supporters Group.