Aston Villa - Why Is It A Crime To Change Your Allegiance?
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Why Is It A Crime To Change Your Allegiance?

There's definitely two sides of the fence in regards to voting with your feet and not attending matches in one camp, (in the hope of knocking some sense into the powers that be), versus withholding support which will be of further detriment to the club when it needs that support most.

Within the latter camp there also seems from some of its members to be a suggestion that not supporting the team through thick and thin makes you a lesser fan, whereas in camp one the suggestion that by continuing to fund/attend matches enables the status quo to continue and in the long term harms the club.

Personally, I've voted with my feet.

Unlike some, I wasn't introduced to football by my dad, relative or friend. I picked my team aged about 7 or 8, attended the odd match here and there before becoming a regular under my own steam in my latter teens.

In a sense it isn't 'in my blood' like some. I wasn't given the talk from my dad, that his dad had given him. I was never told to support your team whatever their circumstances - that it was akin to a crime to change clubs.

With my uncles and other family scattered around the globe (South Africa, Canada, California, London, Nottingham), they didn't influence me in any way shape or form, though, through my footballing life I have learned many of those 'lessons' independantly.

The closest I came to these kind of 'passed down values' was politically. My mum and dad not originally coming from these shores were bought up favouring the right in a 2 party system where the left was very socialist.

Some 50 years on they continue to vote conservative irrespective of whether they have any idea of what the policies are for either/any dad voted right, his dad voted right...and we've always voted right and continue to do so, are pretty much comments you would hear from them.

I have absolutely no qualms changing my political allegiences. I've also in the past not voted either, and if you were to equate this to a football analogy it would be like saying I've started supporting another club/voted with my feet.

I remember some while back posting that there are some fans that use football to almost create an identity for themselves, often attending all matches (european away, reserves, youth etc), 'I was there when there was 3 fans and a dog when we played Tinpot Utd in the old Southern League days' because by not doing so it makes them a lesser fan and being a 'better fan than you' is more important than actually loving the experience of being a fan and loving the game.

I got both barrels from Glensider on that one before one of his sons in law could see the point I was making and he accepted that there were some fans like that.

At no point did I suggest that ALL fans willing to watch every match at every level were like this. For many they truly love everything Aston Villa and would happily watch 11 shirts hanging on a line to dry.

Brain experts say by the age of 35, that 95% of everything we do is an unconscious habit, and only with a lot of concerted conscious effort to change are we able break those habits.

By voting with my feet this season, and having considered doing so half way through MON's tenure, and not very much enjoyed last year either, I believe the habit of supporting the club irrespective of the circumstances has been fully broken.

I'm not saying I don't support the club, just that I believe my consciousness has been awaken and no longer do I think like a Catholic that considers the Pope to be infallable.

Whilst I could never consider supporting another club, I do question why it's only football that scorns people changing their allegience.

Would they scorn floating voters or people changing religion and would it be considered politically incorrect to scorn someone who had changed their sexual preference, so why football?


It's certainly started an interesting debate on the forum Click Here.

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The Journalist

Writer: upthevilla Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday April 17 2012

Time: 8:00AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Similar case to yourself in that myself and my family decided to move to Australia.still have the passion for my club,trying to get every ounce of information from online sources,stopping up to watch games at stupid o clock on a Monday morning!but I suppose fans who go to games will class me as an armchair fan who doesn't have the right to make an opinion!
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17/04/2012 08:22:00

Nice article. It's strange how over the years supporting a football team has been likened to being in a relationship or having a religion. If it was a relationship, surely the unhappy party should be free to leave and find a new partner instead of suffering and being miserable by their current one guilt-free. If it was a religion you'd either have the faith or you wouldn't, waiting, hoping and praying for the day where you are rewarded for your faith and all things come good. With regard to only football being the only thing that scorns people for changing allegiance I wouldn't say that was entirely true; I'd say there are many disowned children out there who have been scorned by their parents/friends for being gay, or becoming a Muslim to fit in with a spouse's way of life, just as examples. Any issue is only as serious as you take it, in my opinion. Some people will think you're talking absolute Hutton, some will say you're a revolutionary genius for entertaining the idea. I'll finish this comment by giving you an oldie but goodie: "Whatever you decide to do in life, as long as you're happy that's all that matters, and we'll always support you whatever happens because we love you! Now go and tidy your room...."
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17/04/2012 09:00:00

Good article. You describe how the club are losing the less partisan fans whilst we have McMuppet as manager. Unfortunately this manager is driving away even the most partisan of fans. Fortunately he will be gone in the summer. The exit strategy has already been discussed within the club, despite the spin and bluster to the contrary. Hopefully the new regime will be enough to tempt the likes of you back to Villa Park.
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17/04/2012 10:27:00

I don't mickatkins21 and dislike the fans who have that attitude. I admire the fans who live so far away and still keep the passion and interest. Not everyone can go but we are all Villa.
The Fear
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17/04/2012 10:39:00

"talking absolute Hutton" LOL....One of the best comments I've seen in ages!

I can understand those giving up on the 'top' league and moving down divisions. I couldn't myself I don't think, although if I moved too far away maybe.... nah, I couldn't. However my business partner moved to Stockport decades ago so sought out his local club (ie not going for Man Utd or Man City which would have just been totally wrong!) but Stockport County. That I can understand, been to a few games with him and it is more like the 'old days' and a good crack as well!
The Fear
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17/04/2012 10:42:00

Football is a passion, a lover, a friend. When you walk away from the ground on that saturday(???) you have a feeling of strong emotion, whether that be, overwhelming joy, bitter disappointment, anger, frustration, satisfaction, and these emotions are carried with you throughout the time till the next match when the anticipation builds in the expectancy of feeling that overwhelming joy once more. Take this season (PLEASE take this season!!!) we have played, over 90 mins, poorly in EVERY game, with the odd moments of "magic" to give us our "fix" but even though we have played so poorly, the expectation is there that THIS time it will be better, that TODAY we will feel that overwhelming joy once more (not gonna happen this season - or probably next) and the butterflies start, either on the morning of the match or when your on your way and you'll feel the hairs rise on the back of your neck when the ground comes into view (even after48 years as a supporter - every time!) You can stay away, for whatever reason (and i think at the moment Aston Villa are being unfaithful to us all) but you can NEVER love another!
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17/04/2012 10:46:00

If Villa was a woman? When I met her under the Big Fat Ron reign, she was a fine girl. Admired by all my friends. When it came to action she had me breatheless. Eventually however, under the DOL reign she became horrible and skanky so I would have dumped her, and probably started to see that Russian looking Chelsea girl if I could have afforded it. No doubt, I would have been looking on during the MON reign, and might even have reignited the flames. Only to soon realise she was the same skank just with some excellent makeup and smooth talk. Now under the AMC reign, I'd be feeling sorry for her as I drive past her visiting the soup kitchens. Meanwhile my Russian girl would be giving me no end of heartache and I'd probably be considering becoming celibate!
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17/04/2012 10:53:00

But Villa isn't a woman. So.....UP THE VILLA!
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17/04/2012 10:54:00

I have always been a little suspicious of 'floating' voters. All too often they seem to make their decision based on what is best for them not on what would be best for the country. Anyway, I digress.

I started supporting the Villa when my family moved to Brum in 1960. At various times I have lived away from Brum but there has only ever been one team for me. Despite this I shall not be renewing my season ticket next year if McLeish is still in charge. How else can I make it clear that I do not like the sort of football his teams play. Others must act as they see fit but this does not make me any less of a Villa fan.

chocolate teapot
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17/04/2012 10:55:00

After 15 years straight as a season ticket holder, I binned it in disgust on the appointment of McMuppet. To calm my sporting withdrawal symptoms, I've now got myself tickets to go and watch Warwickshire in the 20-20. Does that count?
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17/04/2012 11:00:00

Nice political analogy, I've been saying the same for sometime. The floating voter rules this country - our 2 main parties are VERY close, and I work with a lot of them. ChoccyTeapot, the only thing a 'permanent voter' ever achieves is to give his chosen party a mandate to do what the hell they please knowing they'll still get your 'X'. I find this very, very wrong. And IMO, continuing to renew is akin to this. We CAN make a change by our decisions. And the only thing I can see that will force RL to change will be more empty seats. Even if he doesn't care financially, it's a visible admission of failure. But then again he's failed with the Browns for 16 years. I could 'follow' a lower local league club quite easily, and I know many who've given up on the Prem for various reasons (mainly disparity and the CL £ that's ruined the game Mr Platini!). But to switch from Villa to Chelsea? ManU? Ci£eh? Never in a billion years. A trillion billion years. That is unforgivable. Football is different to chicks/lads. Different to politics. Football is Football. Won't buy another ST until at least the ethos changes from above and well done to all those who are making a stand. I'd rather watch arsebucket united in the 8th northern local league on a wet sunday morning. Despite the condition of the pitch, it's a more level playing field! As far as 'Glensider' et al goes, there will always be 'more fan than you' types, and in a way they're right. They spend more time and money and effort so their claim is justified. However, that doesn't stop 'lesser' fans living and breathing the Villa. Keep on keeping on!!!!! P.s. McLeish OUT ASAP. Loser.
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17/04/2012 11:51:00

P.s. I think yr right, football is a habit. Herion with a leather ball!!! LO!
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17/04/2012 11:53:00

My family was split right down the middle - half went blue, the other half went Villa. Makes for quite interesting times when big games are on. Anyway, I now live in China and I can say with all honesty that this season is the first time I've chosen not to watch a game when they've played (still only a few mind). One of the great things about China is you can get everything, and in seasons past I've watched every single Villa game online for free. This season though, having stayed up until 2 am or having gone to bed and then gotten up again at 3am to watch games, it's proven too much. The games just don't keep me awake anymore and they are totally depressing at the same time: Spurs away, Swansea away, Arsenal away and many more to boot - just awful, awful games. Of course, I still end up waking up and checking the live scores on my Blackberry if I'm in bed, or check them while out late on a Saturday night, because I can't focus on sleep or idle chit-chat when I know the Villa are playing, but there has to be better ways to spend my time than sitting at home waiting to watch the most depressing Villa performances I can remember. I've even gotten the point now where I play the Villa game on my laptop and have the TV game on too, just so I have something interesting to watch. Of course, at the end of the day, it's always UTV!
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17/04/2012 11:57:00

I couldn't step in anyone's ground unless Villa were playing. To suggest that one could change ones club is to' take the Warkock's,' or as quoted above, you'd be' talking absolute Hutton.'
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17/04/2012 12:03:00

Good article... i'm not an ST holder, but go to the occasional game as and when finances allow... decided early on this season that i wouldn't be back until mclosermentality has departed from the club though. Does this make me a lesser fan? I've been a supporter since i was about 4 and someone asked me which football club i supported - i could only remember the name of 1 club, and it was villa - and it stuck since! Again - i never had the 'pep talk' from my dad as he's not really bothered, but i still class myself as a passionate fan - even with the dark cloud under the club at the moment. The missus was also going to get me the new kit with my name on the back, but i told her to leave it until they sack the manager. I hope you're right voice about the club getting him out - they'll see a massive surge in season tickets, merch and matchday revenue when they do that's for certain! UTV!
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17/04/2012 12:04:00

Good article, I largely agree. I'd never support another team, but I'm definitely reaching the point of neutrality over the past couple of seasons. A bad result used to mean that my week was ruined, but now I'm pretty apoplectic about it. And it's not because we're poor (I'm 28, it's not my first relegation rodeo), it's because of the contempt shown to the fans by the club with it's appointments which just leave you questioning why you should care. Every time I see McLeish it makes me feel physically angry, I'm bitter toward the board and I can't identify with the players any more - they're just a bunch of journeymen who are more interested in the money than playing for the shirt. Why should I care so much about the success of these people when I've enough to deal with in my own life? I'm really not sure if getting rid of AM will get me back to VP now, I'll have to wait and see how I feel when it happens. - Maybe that means I'm not a 'real supporter', but frankly I couldn't care less.
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17/04/2012 12:31:00

There are degrees of support and passion. If you are truly smitten, then by definition it is impossible to love another. It matters not how you started supporting Villa, but if you are truly smitten you are stuck with them for life, and are consumed by each fixture. It is totally possible to "support" other teams, and "like" other teams, and in many ways it is much more enjoyable. If they win they win and all is good, but if they lose it is more of a shrug of the shoulders or a slight dissapointment. Off to watch Blackpool in a few minutes hoping they win, and enjoyed the 2 Fleetwood games against Wrexham and Lincoln last week as they gatecrashed into the Football League. Still also hoping Stenhousemuir can squeeze into the play-offs and will be up to Scotland to watch if they make it. Villa I watch out of duty and agony as much as elation, and remains the only result that realy matters whether there in person, on TV, or wherever. I have seen Villa on most of the grounds across the country delighting or dementing watching them over the past 50 years, and you cannot change a real passion. I am a less regular visitor to Villa Park these days, but will be there a on Saturday because we are playing rubbish, need 3 points, and need all the support we can get. Up the Villa
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17/04/2012 18:35:00


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