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How To Treat Your Fans
January 6, 2014 6:13 AM   Subscribe

After being thrashed 5-0 in the FA Cup by Nottingham Forest, West Ham United have offered one very sad young fan the chance to watch a home game from the directors box.
posted by marienbad (66 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
Now if only Villa could do the same for the stupid loss to Sheffield bloody United.
posted by MartinWisse at 6:23 AM on January 6 [2 favorites]


Now if only Villa could do the same for the stupid loss to Sheffield bloody United.

I swear my first thought was "Pancho Villa?" and then "Bob Villa?"
and then we got to the weirdest looking football side ever, then I found out I had no water so I'll stop now, except to say who's that creepy looking guy running Cardiff?

Because creepy.
posted by eriko at 6:25 AM on January 6


except to say who's that creepy looking guy running Cardiff?

Vincent Tan? Or someone else?

Also, this is a great gesture and a way for this kid to save face, as well. Trust me, I was "LOL Hammers", but this makes me a "lol hammers".
posted by josher71 at 6:28 AM on January 6


Now if only Villa could do the same for the stupid loss to Sheffield bloody United.

In 2009 Stoke lost to Hartlepool in the cup. HARTLEPOOL.
posted by josher71 at 6:29 AM on January 6 [4 favorites]


If you mean the guy who looks like a third-rate Bond villian, that would be Vincent Tan.
posted by marienbad at 6:30 AM on January 6 [3 favorites]


Interestingly, or maybe not, Hartlepool was the first club Brian Clough managed.
posted by marienbad at 6:31 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Amazing to see Vincent Tan's name in a post entitled "How To Treat Your Fans".
posted by devious truculent and unreliable at 6:41 AM on January 6 [5 favorites]


I'm a fan of Big Sam it must be said.
posted by josher71 at 6:42 AM on January 6


Nice cheap publicity, but nothing less than a full refund to everyone who travelled would make up for that shite.
posted by walrus at 6:42 AM on January 6


If you mean the guy who looks like a third-rate Bond villian, that would be Vincent Tan.

That's the one!
posted by eriko at 6:51 AM on January 6


“West Ham United have offered one very sad young fan the chance to watch a home game from the directors box”

Somewhere on my Twitter feed this morning the phrase “but hasn't he suffered enough?” went past.
posted by Auz at 6:54 AM on January 6 [9 favorites]


Nice cheap publicity, but nothing less than a full refund to everyone who travelled would make up for that shite.

When you travel to follow a bunch of guys who kick an object across some grass fro 90 minutes for eleventiy bazaillion per annum, and you choose to do so. Deal with it.

Unless you think the win/lose/draw decision was made earlier.

From this post I learned there is a team called Nottingham Forest, and that a team knows PR.
posted by Mezentian at 6:54 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


When you travel to follow a bunch of guys who kick an object across some grass fro 90 minutes for eleventiy bazaillion per annum, and you choose to do so. Deal with it.

It does have precedent.
posted by josher71 at 6:59 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


When you travel to follow a bunch of guys who kick an object across some grass fro 90 minutes for eleventiy bazaillion per annum, and you choose to do so. Deal with it.

They'd be paid fuck all if everyone chose not to, but the minimum the people who pay for those exorbitant salaries should expect is some kind of effort to win the game. Fielding a third string team is ripping off the fans who make it possible for those salaries to exist. A cheap stunt like this hardly glosses over it. I'm not a West Ham fan, but if I was I'd be disgusted as much by that as the disregard to the fans shown in the team selection and effort.
posted by walrus at 6:59 AM on January 6


It does have precedent.

Well, bugger me.

More of this then.
posted by Mezentian at 7:00 AM on January 6


I'm a fan of Big Sam it must be said.

Not that big a suprise from a Stoke fan.
posted by MartinWisse at 7:01 AM on January 6


Re: Vincent Tan

Cardiff owner Vincent Tan angry at lack of goals from goalkeeper David Marshall
posted by triceryclops at 7:02 AM on January 6 [2 favorites]


Not that big a suprise from a Stoke fan.

He seems like the affable type to me. Not a lot of pretense.

And I think they dig you are looking for lives at Crystal Palace, now.
posted by josher71 at 7:04 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


HARTLEPOOL.

In my mind's eye this is written in 50pt bright red blinking comic sans because there is truly no other way to express the sheer outrage of this statement.
posted by elizardbits at 7:16 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


I think Vincent Tan looks like a particularly unremarkable male, Malaysian human being of his age. What about him looks "creepy" - ? The glasses-and-'tache combo?
posted by the quidnunc kid at 7:27 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


He wears leather gloves
posted by Ned G at 7:28 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


As a casual soccer/football fan who enjoys following the BPL but really has no dog in the fight, Vincent Tan is just the gift that keeps on giving. He is fantastic.

Vincent Tan Boos His Own Team
posted by the painkiller at 7:31 AM on January 6 [3 favorites]


In the photo marienbad linked, he has a very stern/unimpressed/haughty look on his face which seems stereotypically villainous when combined with his dapper mode of dress. In the rest of the photos of him linked in this thread he just looks like a regular dude who occasionally dresses fancy.
posted by elizardbits at 7:37 AM on January 6


I get a little uncomfortable with some of the mocking of Vincent Tan, as it seems to have a slightly xenophobic/racist tinge to it, but he really does appear to be horrible at running a professional sports team. Also, wearing the team's jersey in the owner's box is probably even worse than wearing a band t-shirt to the same band's show, but TUCKED IN for fuck's sake?
posted by Rock Steady at 7:43 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


he has a very stern/unimpressed/haughty look on his face which seems stereotypically villainous when combined with his dapper mode of dress

Maybe we should Kick It Out, "It" being stern looks and leather gloves. So un-football.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 7:46 AM on January 6


Vincent Tan is just the gift that keeps on giving

I dunno. It seems that every action is a major "fuck you" to supporters. There was no reason to sack the manager. Yes, they are in the bottom half of the table, but it is their first season in the EPL, and the fact that they beat Man City certainly showed some degree of promise. Now this bullshit will probably get them relegated.
posted by triceryclops at 7:51 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Tan has become an archetypal baddie because he has bought a franchise and decides to run it the way he wants. The fans hate this because it illustrates their powerlessness to the whim of a single wealthy owner.

That and the gloves.
posted by 0 answers at 8:04 AM on January 6


I get a little uncomfortable with some of the mocking of Vincent Tan, as it seems to have a slightly xenophobic/racist tinge to it

I think that's probably just you. He'd be getting a far easier time if he bankrolled the team and stayed in the background the way City's owners have.
posted by walrus at 8:09 AM on January 6


I want to qualify that slightly actually; there may indeed be a xenophobic/racist flavour in some of the criticism of Tan, but I don't think it's endemic towards Asian owners in football. Fans are fickle beasts, and it's his actions which allow those things to surface without being shouted down. There's a lot of passion involved in supporting a football team, and it does allow the worst in some people to come out when they perceive their support to be irrelevant to those in charge of the club. I don't see any of that happening with other teams where the owners have more of a clue.
posted by walrus at 8:23 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


I think it's this sort of thing that has led to the sartorial criticism of Vincent Tan.

Not exactly villainous, but certainly a bit off-putting (also note that until last year, Cardiff's home colors had been blue, and their nickname is the "Bluebirds." Vincent Tan had the colors changed to red, and reduced the size of the bluebird on their crest). I agree that in some cases, there may be a racial component to criticism of Tan, but he is also a terrible team owner.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:42 AM on January 6


walrus: I don't think it's endemic towards Asian owners in football.

No, I agree with that. It's just that his missteps get spun as "He's horrible because he's not from here," rather than "He's just plain horrible," and it's certainly not all of his critics that are spinning it that direction. Also, I'm a casual fan viewing this from a lens located an ocean away, so I'm certainly open to the possibility that I'm wrong.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:46 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


My team Liverpool had some terrible owners a few years back, who brought the club to its knees financially, which led to a lot of fans who should have known better referring to them vituperatively as "yanks". This, in my opinion, was not xenophobia towards Americans, just a descent to the lowest form of criticism fuelled by feelings of anger and helplessness. Now we have a different set of American owners who are perceived as saviours of the club, and no-one refers to them as yanks. I'm hoping that illustrates the point I feel I've made badly above.
posted by walrus at 8:49 AM on January 6 [4 favorites]


I am going to drop out of my usual oblique mode to set out why I have my little panties in a twist about this.

Those of us who have experienced the phenomenon of football in Europe have no doubt all heard some vile, racist bullshit from various "fans" in their time, some of which ascends to truly rare heights of utter fucking stupidity.

No-one in this thread is in any way espousing such views (in my humble opinion), but in the context of the universe of bigotry I suggest that it behoves people interested in the international game to tread a little carefully. (Full confession: I have made at least one "joke" in the past which referenced a national stereotype and was very rightly called out on that shit by at least one member of this community, and I am ashamed about that).

So with regard to Vincent Tan, I’m sure you’ll take my point that there is nothing in any way creepy about being a 60+ year-old Malaysian man who (e.g.) wears leather gloves, scowls, or wears a suit. That is totally unremarkable behaviour for the Chairman of a football club who happens to be a 60+ year old Malaysian man.

You might think Tan is a total cock as a person, but whether he is a total cock has zero to do with his "look", and I put it to you all that a tiny amount of care in our discussion about his creepiness may help to put a long distance between ourselves and the dog-whistlers.

Yours very respectfully and sincerely,
posted by the quidnunc kid at 8:50 AM on January 6 [7 favorites]


First you're blue, now you're red, you look like a twat when you pat your head!

Cardiff City falling down, falling down, falling down!
Cardiff City falling down, poor old Cardiff!
Build it up with black and white, black and white, black and white!
Build it up with black and white, Swansea City!

There's only one team in Wales!
One team in Wales!
There's only one team in Wales!

posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 8:51 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


walrus: I'm hoping that illustrates the point I feel I've made badly above.

I completely understand your point, and think it is well-made. You are clearly an intelligent person of refinement and taste.

That assessment has nothing to do with the fact that I am a life-long Red Sox fan who has thoroughly adopted our brethren in the Fenway Sports Group family as my Premiere League side. YNWA.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:59 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


That assessment has nothing to do with the fact that I am a life-long Red Sox fan who has thoroughly adopted our brethren in the Fenway Sports Group family as my Premiere League side. YNWA.

PAH! Glory hunter!

(I really don't care what team a person supports, by the way, but I couldn't just let it sit there un "Glory hunter"ed now could I?)
posted by josher71 at 9:21 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


There's only one team in Wales!
One team in Wales!
There's only one team in Wales!



Aberystwyth Town?
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 9:26 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


I think it's bit of a stretch to call anyone adopting LFC a glory hunter after the last twenty years in the league!
posted by walrus at 9:37 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: I have my little panties in a twist about this.


Sorry to take that from your excellent and well-made point, the quidnunc kid, but it was staring me in the face and I'm afraid I don't make the rules.
posted by billiebee at 9:51 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Aberystwyth Town?

Oh, did the Seasiders happen to knock Man United from the FA Cup yesterday? If so, then yes!

Chim chimmeree, chim chimmeree, chim chimmeroo,
Who needs Van Persie when we've got Michu?

posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 9:52 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Tan Sri Vincent Tan runs his companies in such a megalomaniac way that employees made this video for his 60th birthday. He obtained most of these franchises through being known to be very close to the president, and remained so via bribery and kickbacks. The fact that he holds so many franchises should illustrate how effective this was. He is creepy for reasons unrelated to racism, much in the same way that saying that Abramovich has mafiya ties is something that can be driven by a knowledge of 90s history rather than Russian stereotypes.
posted by jaduncan at 9:53 AM on January 6 [2 favorites]


(I really don't care what team a person supports, by the way, but I couldn't just let it sit there un "Glory hunter"ed now could I?)

A fair point, given that few would 1-2 support the traditional Glory Hunter club.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 10:06 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Gah. *PM, I'm not killing off the royal family. But watch the video, it's really astonishingly creepy and sycophantic.
posted by jaduncan at 10:10 AM on January 6


I am not pointing my tedious little finger at the word "creepy", but at the word "looks", and the suggestion that maybe he "looks creepy" because of various articles of clothing. Neither am I suggesting that anyone here is motivated by racism.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 10:13 AM on January 6


Vincent Tan is pretty much the Ice King to Roman Abramovich's Hunson Abadeer.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 10:15 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


that video is marvstonishing
posted by forgetful snow at 10:23 AM on January 6


Chelsea has more than it's fair share of glory hunters and don't get me started on Man City.
posted by josher71 at 10:24 AM on January 6


robocop is bleeding: Vincent Tan is pretty much the Ice King to Roman Abramovich's Hunson Abadeer.

I am having so many thoughts and feelings about a notional Land of Ooo Football League.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:55 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


I am having so many thoughts and feelings about a notional Land of Ooo Football League.

Way ahead of you. I started this project a few years ago and never got very far beyond making up a few teams and crests.

Winterpool
Nightosphere F.C.
Candy Kingdom United

The idea was to map each team to a Premier League team and then blog over the course of the season using real-world results for Ooo competitions.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:03 AM on January 6 [4 favorites]


I didn't suggest that he looked creepy, I was describing what aspects of his appearance might suggest he could play a James Bond villain. The word creepy does not appear anywhere in the comment I made about his snazzy dressing.
posted by elizardbits at 11:03 AM on January 6


Fair enough, elizardbits. I hope you don't think I am taking an unjustified pop at you, and I apologise if I have. I admire you and your endless thoughtful wit very much, so please forgive my pretentious bullshit in this matter.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 11:18 AM on January 6


robocop is bleeding: Way ahead of you. I started this project a few years ago and never got very far beyond making up a few teams and crests.

This is the best.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:22 AM on January 6


For what it's worth, I have noticed a not-insignificant amount of anti-Asian bullshit lurking in many comments critical of Tan around the internet. The fact that Tan is actually a deeply suspicious character with uncertain motives and seemingly no clue of his current business is apparently providing cover for some rather unsavory opinions to find the light. I stress that I don't see that happening here, either in this thread or generally, nor do I expect to. But I do see it happening elsewhere, and for that reason I was very gratified to see the quidnunc kid step out of his customary character to address the situation forthrightly. I did not read him taking any person or comment to task so much as requesting a certain amount of mindfulness when otherwise deriding a clearly risible figure, and I for one appreciate his and others' efforts very much.
posted by Errant at 11:30 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


No dude, I think you are super rad and you have my vote as always. I just wanted to clarify in case you thought I was being a jerkwad, which was not my intent.
posted by elizardbits at 11:33 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Trying to recall which team matched with which. The Goblin Kingdom was West Ham, Candy Kingdom was ManU, Liverpool was Ice Kingdom (though Cardiff does fit better now, which could make Swansea the Fire Kingdom), Stoke was Marauder Village, Citeh was City of Thieves, Nightosphere was Chelsea, Arsenal was the Land of the Dead (seriously, is this Death or Wegner?), Newcastle was Mars, Sunderland was Lumpy Space, and uh...
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:36 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]


I would never think you are a jerkwad! - And that goes for everyone in this thread ditto! Again, I am obviously bringing my own baggage into this, so thanks to all for your continual grooviness in all things.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 11:38 AM on January 6


For what it's worth, I have noticed a not-insignificant amount of anti-Asian bullshit lurking in many comments critical of Tan around the internet. The fact that Tan is actually a deeply suspicious character with uncertain motives and seemingly no clue of his current business is apparently providing cover for some rather unsavory opinions to find the light.

If that's so then you're probably right, but I wonder how many of those people actually hold anti-Asian opinions as opposed to lashing out thoughtlessly. I remember when racism was mainstream in football, but it started to disappear fairly quickly with the advent of successful black players. The contrast in opinions pre and post John Barnes amongst some Liverpool fans for instance was huge, and that's made me wonder whether a lot of what went before was parrot-like repetition rather than a considered hatred. I'd love to see some top players be brave enough to come out, so the same effect can happen with homophobia in the game, but I understand it's difficult when there's such an institutional barrier.
posted by walrus at 11:58 AM on January 6


I am not pointing my tedious little finger at the word "creepy", but at the word "looks", and the suggestion that maybe he "looks creepy" because of various articles of clothing. Neither am I suggesting that anyone here is motivated by racism.

Sorry if that came across as a personal rejection. It wasn't meant to be directed at a perceived sleight, just an indicator that there are rational reasons to dislike the man too.

I actually agree with you that there's a lot of racist bullshit that is tied up in a lot of the online comments; given the narrative of evil foreign owner pushes out brave Scottish manager and all that it's a bit of a gift to racists who can dog whistle all day.
posted by jaduncan at 12:12 PM on January 6


City of Thieves FC (the Larcenists)

Spiky Village Town (the Gut Grinders)

Lumpy Space Wednesday (the Whatevers)
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:14 PM on January 6 [1 favorite]


seriously, is this Death or Wegner?


Oh, please- Arsène Wenger is way less chipper than that guy.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:15 PM on January 6


No worries jaduncan - I totally take your point.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 12:46 PM on January 6


Up until this very second I thought "West Ham" was made up for that IT Crowd episode...
posted by groovesquirrel at 12:49 PM on January 6 [4 favorites]


Amusingly, I thought the same thing about West Ham for that Monty Python "World Leaders Trivia" sketch. And also for Arsenal in Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I couldn't believe those were real team names.
posted by Errant at 1:30 PM on January 6 [2 favorites]


Perhaps Vincent Tan's sartorial sense is informed by the well documented dangers of long coat zippers.
posted by Dr. Zira at 2:39 PM on January 6 [1 favorite]


Presented without comment.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:54 AM on January 8


Cardiff owner Tan considers legal action against sacked boss Mackay
posted by josher71 at 8:03 AM on January 9


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