The key thing to remember is that we’re all West Ham fans. It’s a little counterproductive to name any group “Real West Ham Fans”, as that implies some are not real fans. The fans at away games are those with 21-plus priority points, and they might have different views to the 22,000 extra fans at the London Stadium. Not getting to every game doesn’t make you a plastic fan. Last night news came out that the march has been cancelled on march 10th which has many fans in anger.

So once again we have had the wool pulled over our eyes once again, but will the fans still march.

There are many different people with many different issues. I’m not that agitated by popcorn or having the word ‘London’ on the badge, whereas the arguments about improving the stadium and fans feeling let down by the retractable seating are much more important. Many fans will never accept leaving Upton Park, but there are also some fans who like the new stadium.

Many supporters just want Sullivan and Gold out, but we must also remember that any new owner might not be better (unless the club plummets down the league and it ends up getting saved by a Supporters Trust in the style of Portsmouth or Wimbledon). New investors might be from, say, the United States (Man United and Liverpool), Russia (Chelsea), Thailand (Leicester), China (West Brom), Abu Dhabi (Man City) or England (Mike Ashley at Newcastle). Some foreign investors might get West Ham, but most will see it as a business, and there’s no guarantee fans will be listened to or legacy appreciated. Though if they throw more money at the team than the current board it might be fun.

The board should have had a fans’ vote on the move to the London Stadium and the retractable seating promises lead fans to believe they would be closer to the pitch than at present. Though Stratford makes some sense as a home when most fans now live in Essex. New owners would certainly benefit from not having been involved in the move. But it’s also possible that the stadium will work within the next ten years (as it has done in some games like Leicester and Chelsea this season) and we do now have 22,000 extra fans at home games.

Whatever happens, West Ham are not unique, being part of a group of teams in the mini-league below the current top six. There are a lot of other underachieving clubs too. We’ll probably always be a bit crap at times and occasionally achieve stunning victories. The club should have won more trophies than it has. We all want to reach ‘the next level’ and we all want the board to respect us as consumers and listen to us. Let’s hope the march has a positive result. But let’s also respect each other’s views and remember we’re not in League One either and things could be worse. And we are all united by a love of claret and blue. Come on you Irons!


By Daniel Hatcher

Jon Pope

By Jon Pope

Use to sit in the BML for 10 years, been a West Ham fan all my life, and my great grandfather was a founder member of the TIW. I also help run the Hammer Chat website.

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