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Villa v West Ham On 'Dark Weekend'

Just how out of touch are the FA and those that run football? Just when will they realise that most fans are sick to death of being messed about and some are being forced away from the clubs they love?

The Villa's home game against West Ham on October 6 is the only game to kick off at 3pm on that Saturday. ONE GAME? 3pm, Saturday afternoon, is the traditional time for football and the time that most of us want to be at our clubs watching football. Not 5.15pm thank you very much, not 12.30 or 12.00 and most certainly not crummy lunch time kick offs on a Sunday when I for one want to be stuffing my face with roast beef and yorkshire pud!

Villa v the Hammers will be only one of two games (the other is Manchester United v Wigan at the stupid time of 12.45pm) on the Saturday, another 8 are played the day after.

Part of the reason is the stupid decision to play Uefa Cup ties on a Thursday. Seriously, football does not have to be on every night of the week and if it does, surely Tuesday and Wednesday would be more suitable for teams who have weekend fixtures upcoming?

Malcolm Clarke, chairman of the Football Supporters' Federation, said: 'Fans still very much like the traditional 3pm Saturday kick-off and the decline in that element of the game is a matter of great concern. For there to be just one game kicking off at that time is quite extraordinary and it will be a dark weekend for fans. It's symbolic of the way things are going but the views of the match-going fan seem to be bottom of the list of priorities. We will certainly bring this up at our next meeting with the Premier League.'

A Premier League spokesman, obviously oblivious to what fans want, said: 'It is a combination of factors - teams featuring in Europe, television games and policing issues. We always try to give fans as much notice as possible as our research shows that if we do that, then they can make the appropriate travel arrangements.'

It isn't always that simple and I think it is high time the fans got a say in the way the game is run. Saturday 3pm and Wednesday nights at 7.45pm. It worked well for many years and should be the bedrock that football is run by.

Villa alone had around 9 fixture changes before Christmas, this is just not on.

Do you agree or am I just a moaning old fashioned git?!?




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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday September 6 2007

Time: 11:01AM

Your Comments

Match of the Day should be good that night! 2 games to fill up the entire show! I bet we still only get 3 minutes. lol
DeanoVilla
A few seasons ago, us, little Rotherham, played on a Sunday evening for Sky at Birmingham and that made it that we had played every day of the week in the first 14 games of the season. We ought to start a campaign 'bring football back to 3pm on a Saturday'- wonder how many of the 'big clubs' would back it and lose out on their revenue from TV?
herringthorpe
I wonder where Radio 5 live will be coming from? I hope NRC and Harewood bag a goal each that day.
col8
what I don't understand herringthorpe is why the FA/PL are opposed to live games being screened by sky/setanta, both of whom I'm sure would be only to happy to screen games at any time, at 3pm on a Saturday. I'm a season ticket holder, on tv or not, I would ALWAYS go to the live game, there is nothing to replace that, and those that would rather watch on tv will do so at 12, 12.30, 12.45, 5.15 etc. So the argument is a nonsense that it would affect the gates. I also can't see how it would affect audiences watching it on tv in fact in my ever so humble opinion (!!) it would enhance things greatly.
The Fear
You are a moaning old fashioned git...and I agree with you.
jonah
The annoying thing that they televise 3 o'clock k/o's for Asia!! There were a number of occassions last season that i managed to watch Villa's 3 oclock k/o's on Starsports or ESPN Asia over the internet! Why can't we get them when they are our bloody teams!!
nottinghamvillain
football as we know and love it is beginning to be transformed. i really dont enjoy the sunday 4pm KO, and next weekend we have balckburn at home at 5.15, which is just stupid. i agree that 3pm KO's should be televised, but some of the teams have to play on sunday bcoz they're in the uefa cup on the thursday
daspecial1
Seems like nothing is sacred anymore, particularly for your average 'Everyday-Johnny' football supporter. Still, as season ticket holders we pays our money knowing that 3.00 p.m. kick-off's on a Saturday will be the exception as opposed to the norm. Guess we're the winners on this occasion, keeping our 3.00 p.m. time slot, but sadly the spectacle as we once knew and loved it is now gone forever.
glensider
As with everything in our society, it comes down to money and pressure. The clubs get a HUGE amount of money from TV, and that leaves the fans in a relatively weak position. The only leverage fans have is to combine together - no matter what club they support - and apply steady pressure. Want change? Get organised!
BobTheBuilder
that would be one mighty force if all fans joined as one, and imagine the powers we'd have and the things we could demand. sadly never gonna happen though
daspecial1
We often get bigger crowds for games that do not kick off at 3pm on a Saturday. What is the problem? Although I understand the frustration of some fans, I think it is just another in a long line of Villa fans excuses for poor turnouts. the barcodes still get 52,000 on a Sunday, Saturday evening. With the exception of the Blackburns, Boros, Wigans , Fulhams and Boltons most clubs gates are not affected by inconsistent kick off times. Maybe we are only as big as those clubs, maybe our supporters are fickle or maybe we are not as big as we think? The excuses for not coming used to be Ellis, the manager, the style of football, the cost. Well all those excuses can no longer be used so it is just the next in a long line of excuses of why we can't fill Villa Park. Personally I think there are to many part timers who try to pretend they are more than that. To many fans would watch Villa Manure match but not a Villa Bolton. Fickle. I wonder what the next excuse will be.
voiceoftheholte
At least we can all guarantee live commentary! And - of course - NRC and Marlene will score against us! Harewood will probably return the hat-trick.
Adam Mansell
one game on a Saturday with a 15:00 kick off is feckin disgusting! They are taking the ***** out of us supporters big time!
merlin
Well, at least its our good selves that are centre stage on a Saturday. Personally I couldn't give a toss about the other premiership outfits kick-off times.
glensider
Dare we hope for a full house, or an attendance very close to it?
glensider
 

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