There’s nothing pleasing about boycotting your football club. Indeed, the fact that such action was even considered is a sad indictment of the plight of our club.
We were impressed by the level of support for the boycott among City fans which resulted in an official crowd figure of 6,608. The number of people who actually went to the game was probably more like 5,000, but even going by the official figure, City’s attendance suffered by far the greatest drop from their average crowd (68%) of any home team in the FA Cup third round this weekend. Yes, lesser crowds are always expected for cup games, but for City’s to be the highest by some distance speaks volumes.
Although the boycott was well-supported, this isn’t a triumph. As a fanbase we’ve made our point, but it’s not something that we at HCST would want to do again. Whilst there were many fans calling for a boycott, it became clear after we called for one that some fans strongly opposed the idea. This is understandable. After all, the players and manager are not to blame for any of the club’s problems and they deserve our support. It’s vitally important that we remain united as a fanbase.
At the time of writing, just shy of £1,000 has been raised for the two charities thanks to supporters donating their ticket cost as part of the boycott. Donations are still being accepted, so if you would like to donate and haven’t already done so, click here for details of our chosen charities and to donate.
We have no plans to call for any further boycott. Marco Silva responded to the empty seats by making clear his desire for us supporters to pack the ground out again and give the team the backing it needs. We hope to see the ground more full and vibrant at the weekend when we face Bournemouth, but we’re acutely aware that many supporters are staying away not just for the Swansea game but every week, such is the feeling of disenchantment at the club. The only way we can get the ground full again and properly support the team and manager is for Ehab Allam to start listening to supporters and make them want to come back again. It’s clear that crowds will only continue to decline until something changes with how the club is run.
So come on Ehab. Show your face and address the reasons fans aren’t attending. Restore concessions for the young, old and disabled. Use the club’s real name. Stop the increasingly common forced seat moves. Stop seeking to punish anyone who speaks out against you. Give the manager the support which he has said that he needs in order to keep us in the Premier League.