AFC Wimbledon owner’s, The Dons Trust are the latest Trust to speak out against Coventry City’s ground-share with Northampton Town.
“The Dons Trust is a not-for-profit organisation that owns AFC Wimbledon and is guardian of all principles and aims by which it operates. It is committed to strengthening the voice of supporters in the decision making processes at the football club, and strengthening the links between the club and the community of Wimbledon and the surrounding areas.”
Earlier today, The Bristol City Supporter’s Trust released a statement, and now The Dons Trust have followed suit raising their concerns about the move.
The Football League have approved Otium’s plans of ground-sharing at Sixfields for at least the next three seasons, whilst a new ground in the Coventry area is built, despite widespread opposition from Sky Blues’ fans.
FULL DONS TRUST STATEMENT:
“AFC Wimbledon owners The Dons Trust has expressed its deep concern about recent developments at Coventry City, stating that it is “worried for the future of the Club.”
Chair of The Dons Trust, Matthew Breach, said that Coventry’s move to ground-share at Northampton Town “could be extremely dangerous for football”.
The Football League has permitted the would-be owners of Coventry City to move the Club to Northampton for three years, citing Wimbledon’s previous move to Selhurst Park in 1991 as a precedent.
Matthew Breach said “In 1992, the then owners of Wimbledon Football Club were given permission to move the Club, supposedly temporarily, to Crystal Palace FC’s Selhurst Park. This was meant to be a ground share which would end with a new stadium in our home borough. But this move and the lack of proper oversight by the football authorities fostered the conditions for the final destruction of the Club and its permanent removal to Milton Keynes.
“We’re extremely worried that in agreeing to this move, the Football League has not thought out the potential consequences, which could be catastrophic for Coventry City and its fans and community, but also could be extremely dangerous for football as a whole.”
Talking about the achievements of AFC Wimbledon under fan ownership, Matthew added “That we’re only now realistically seeking a return to Plough Lane, where our own demise commenced, shows just how long it can take to reconnect and rebuild those links. Although we’re very proud of what we’ve achieved under fan ownership we need to be honest and say that the cause was a failure to properly police the game by the football authorities.”