Opinions are like umbilici – everybody has one.

And, as common parlance goes, our game is all about opinions.

Although we don’t scour social media, we are not unaware of it either.

We see opinions on Stirling Albion being posted. Some are considered, some are informed, some are uninformed and some are downright bizarre. But we all have a right to ours, right?

We organised a meeting for people to express opinions to, and ask questions of, the Stirling Albion Club Board and Management team, but cancelled it after we received only 7 (seven) requests for joining details. All 7 received a personal response and answers to questions posed.

Apparently face-to-face is better (I wouldn’t disagree with that) and it’s better to see the whites of our eyes while we’re lying to people.

Erm, okay.

The Zoom platform might not be ideal, but it does have its advantages, too. It allows people to attend remotely. People who may not otherwise be able to participate. It’s worked for numerous organisations and people globally. But not the ideal platform for Stirling Albion fans to express their opinions.

Fine.

Got that.

We’ll set up an in-person meeting as soon as we can get date/venues etc.

Meanwhile, whilst remotely meeting the Club Board and Management Team isn’t ideal, expressing opinions remotely on social media appears to be favoured.

In the absence of people prepared to express these opinions to the Club Board, we’d like to respond to some that we’ve seen on, or had reported from, social media.

The Club Board has no ambition

Not my experience of the members of the Board. Each and every one has the ambitions of seeing Stirling Albion perform at the highest level, seeing Stirling Albion remain solvent and in existence, and attracting the necessary financial resources that would enable these ambitions to be better realised. Which leads us to…

The Club Board are incompetent

We do our best.

For myself, I was invited to join the Club Board after a stint on the Trust Board during which I acted as the Trust Board’s observer at Club Board meetings. My experience arms me with Budget setting skills, operational planning skills, problem-solving skills. It might not be immediately obvious what my qualifications and experience in Metallurgy bring to the table, but the scientific training generally means that I seek evidence, data before forming opinions and I don’t generally mouth off about things of which I have little knowledge.

If someone came to me tomorrow and said to me that they could bring more to the running of Stirling Albion than I am doing – and showed evidence of that, and showed a plan to implement that improvement – I would happily step down and let that individual apply for membership of the Board.

Other Board members bring their own skillsets and experience, all of which are needed to address the complexities of running a football club.

And they too would move aside if the right candidates put themselves forward.

If you think you are that candidate, please contact the Club Board on office@stirlingalbionfc.co.uk – including your cv as an initial move would be appreciated.

We need “football people” on the Club Board

This leaves me confused.

Every single Club Board member is steeped in football.

Every single Club Board member has been involved in football as a fan for decades.

Every single Club Board member, in addition to being a fan, brings their own skillsets and experience, all of which are needed to address the complexities of running a football club. However, where appropriate, we do seek advice.

For example, the Club Board sought and received advice from the Trust Board and external, respected “football people” for the appointment of the current First Team Manager and would do so again in the future.

The Club Board “swan about in suits” lapping up the benefits

Not my experience and certainly not the reality. The Club Board willingly dedicate an inordinate amount of personal time to running the business behind the scenes, seven days a week. The visible “suit-wearing” bit you see on a match day is simply a matter of etiquette and, in any event, all of us still have a plethora of tasks to undertake throughout the afternoon.

We don’t all of us see all of the game. I, too, would like to rock up at 14:55 and depart on the final whistle. But I can’t – because I choose to be on the Club Board – and that’s part of the deal.

The whole Club needs restructured

Agreed. And the whole Club Board agrees.

Restructuring lies in the hands of the majority shareholder.

The Club Board are keen to see restructuring that would allow Stirling Albion to compete on a financial level playing field with clubs in our league, and with those who have recently been promoted from our league.

Whilst we are all entitled to our own opinions, we cannot have our own facts.

(The following section has been edited at 13:34 on 01/12/21)
 
I recall when I was at High School and we ventured into a very basic look at Philosophy.
One thing that struck me then and has stuck with me since was the sentence – “There are three truths. My truth, your truth and THE truth”.
That phrase was brought to mind when I wrote a paragraph here about what was my understanding of what happened when there was an investment proposal on offer to the club and how and why the offer did not progress.
I was contacted directly by some people who offered to me their version of exactly what happened and, incongruously, there was even one individual whose identity was shielded behind an anonymous username on a popular internet-based message board who offered theirs to the message board but not to me.
I had pieced together what I had written from what I had been told by various people.
I have withdrawn it from here and will leave the exactitude of events to the many people who know exactly what happened, according to their truth.
I apologise if my piece contained inexactitudes.

And, finally, the Club did not close the Supporters’ Bar. I’m fed up reiterating this. The ability to host the bar was removed by Active Stirling who sequestered the room for their own use.
We submitted an application to the local licensing authority to host a pop-up bar at Home matches in a concourse under the West Stand. This was rejected.
We still await a response from Active Stirling regarding our enquiry some time ago about any potential other rooms/spaces within the office complex that we could use as a Supporters’ Bar on matchday.

If you would like to respond to anything I have raised here, or ask a question, or vent, or whatever, please email me at jd@stirlingalbionfc.co.uk.

I have increased my inbox capacity limit in anticipation.

‘Mon The Binos

John Daly

Supporters’ Liaison