STAGS FANS FOR CHANGE TO ORGANISE BOYCOTT
Fans for change organise boycott
CHAD website, 13 March 2007
Protesting fans who took their campaign to remove Stags' owner Keith Haslam to the skies are now urging supporters to boycott the Macclesfield home game.
They organised a fly-past before Saturday's big derby clash with local rivals Notts County.
A banner behind the plane that flew over Meadow Lane before kick-off proclaimed 'MTFC for Sale. Haslam Out'.
Stags Fans For Change (SFFC), an independent protest group of Mansfield Town supporters, arranged the protest, which attracted great interest from the thousands of travelling fans.
Now the group is urging fans to support a one-match boycott to show Mr Haslam that they want him to leave.
Said a SFFC spokesman: "We received an amazing response to the flypast, the supporters thought it was a great way of getting our message across.
"We appreciate that asking supporters to stay away is an emotive subject, but we feel the time is right. We are safe in the league, and the only thing that is stopping the club from progressing is Keith Haslam.
"The 4,000 Stags supporters who went to Meadow Lane, twice as many as attended the Chester game, sent a clear message to Mr Haslam — it's time to go."
SFFC has been campaigning to get Mr Haslam to sell the club and conducted a survey earlier this year among fans, with almost 1,600 saying they wanted to see him leave.
Mr Haslam has come under sustained fire for his handling of the club's affairs, including the taking of £500,000 director's loan that breached company law at a time when the Stags were desperate for investememt.
New chairman James Derry has said that it is now difficult to get investment into the club because of Mr Haslam's poor reputation.
SFFC stated that it has been actively seeking potential buyers for the club and speaking with potential investors who have expressed an interest in buying a football club.
"It is clear that the majority of Stags' fans don't want Mr Haslam in charge of their club any longer. The club claims that advertising the club for sale nationally risks tempting a London buyer who will only be interested in asset stripping the club.
"But what has Mr Haslam done to invest in the club? Where are our training facilities, reserve team, supporters' facilities and best players that we have nurtured? What assets have we left to strip after 14 years of Keith Haslam?," said an SFFC spokesperson.
* The SFFA is urging demonstrating supporters to gather outside Field Mill at 7.15pm for the Macclesfield game on Friday, 23rd March.
* For the latest Stags news, visit http://www.mansfieldtoday.co.uk.
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