In view of the present situation that the club finds itself in, one must question just what has been going on in recent times.
To those of us watching from the outside it appears that there has been a breakdown of trust and co-operation between the players and management, be it the coaching team or further up the management scale. Poor performances and a resistance to change a playing system, which was obviously not working have led to this situation.
The owners have alienated vast swathes of its fan base in recent years, stating that they didn’t matter and could die when they wanted. This may have been so in the days when Premier League and TV money was abundant, but now, more than ever, they will need those remaining fans to stay, and they must do something to build bridges and encourage those who no longer attend matches to return and fall in love with Hull City AFC again.
Whatever has happened in the past, the club now finds itself where it is. The question is then, how does the Club see its future?
We call upon the club to respond to the following points.
- Sale of the club
The club has been for sale for 6 years now with little progress being made. We believe that this is due to unrealistic pricing, especially as there is a depleted playing squad and tangible assets limited to a small training ground. Can the club please confirm:
- the club is still for sale
- the asking price will be sensibly reduced rather than being the debt owed to Allamhouse Limited
- Playing resources
Recent profits made by the club have largely been down to player sales and parachute payments. As the latter have run out now it is clear that the strength of the playing squad will be vital to the short-term future of the club. Can the club please confirm:
- they will continue to invest in the academy and build on the progress already made
- you believe that the current recruitment set up is able to identify suitable new players at the appropriate fee and the current manager is the man to develop those players
- will there be a change in approach to renegotiating player contracts given the number of players who have refused to sign a new contract over the last few years
- Membership scheme
Whilst there are still flaws in the membership scheme the price changes made last season have at least made it workable. Can the club please confirm:
- the scheme is to continue for 2020/21
- the pricing is not going to increase
- that charges are only going to start when supporters are able to attend
- due consideration will be given to reinstating concessions for disabled fans
- the ‘benefits/bonus’ packages for members will finally materialise
- Fan Engagement
We urge the club to re-engage with the trust at this difficult time – remember we are all in this together. Under Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) guidelines football clubs must have “structured dialogue” with supporters and this must involve a Supporters Trust (if it exists). This is now part of the EFL Rulebook.
- Stadium capacity
The club has recorded some of the lowest attendances at the KCOM during the last season and the Trust is concerned that this decline will continue with League 1 football. Can the club please clarify what steps will be considered to increase attendances to levels previously recorded in League 1 at the KCOM. Can the club please confirm:
- there will be no further stand closures
- special pricing initiatives will be adopted at half term and other special times
- loyalty of fans will be rewarded
- walk-up one off prices will not be excessive
- The KCOM Stadium
We note that the stadium management company has made significant losses whilst under the current ownership and as far as we are aware has not paid any return to Hull City Council. Can the club please confirm:
- appropriate steps are being made to reduce losses and ultimately make a payment to the council
- a reasonable refurbishment policy will be adopted to bring areas of the stadium suffering wear back to the required standard
- that a suitable dilapidations provision is being made in the accounts by the end of the current lease