This is starting to get really messy. A day after Liverpool owner John Henry penned a letter trying to pacify the criticism of Liverpool’s summer transfer dealings, the Supporters’ group Spirit of Shankly have fired back, calling for Liverpool chairman Tom Werner to be held accountable for the way the club is being run.
While John Henry admitted to mistakes in FSG’s near two-year ownership and outlined their blueprint for the future, SoS believe more questions need answering.
‘There comes a point at any football club where the chairman has to step forward on behalf of the board and be held accountable for decisions that they have made and strategies that they have implemented,’ said a statement from SoS, who were at the forefront of a campaign to oust former owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett.
‘With key questions continuing to go unanswered, Spirit of Shankly suggests it is time for Tom Werner to be held accountable as chairman of Liverpool Football Club.
‘After all, the buck stops with him, not with those acting with his authority and not with people no longer at the club.’
As for Brendan Rodgers, SoS are firmly behind the Liverpool manager:
‘Following yet another summer where off-the-pitch activities at Liverpool Football Club have dominated the headlines, we once again find the club ownership attempting to explain away business decisions that have overshadowed footballing matters,’ said the statement.
‘Spirit of Shankly reiterates its stance that the position of manager at Liverpool Football Club should be supported with all of the resources at the club’s disposal.
‘However, events of last Friday and the subsequent open letter from the club’s principal owner indicate that almost two years into FSG’s ownership of the club, this is not yet the case.
‘There remains no ownership presence on this side of the Atlantic. It is our opinion that this situation has led directly to the ‘mistakes’ alluded to in Mr Henry’s open letter.
‘Should the club’s absentee owners not wish to establish a full-time base in Liverpool it remains imperative that they appoint a chief executive of a calibre commensurate with the club’s global status to act with the full authority of the owners in their absence.
‘Without this it is far from sufficient for a club of Liverpool’s stature to have a part-time chairman, based on another continent, with various other interests, and from whom little or nothing of consequence is seen or heard.
‘In case FSG need reminding, they are now employing their third manager, have already dispensed with the services of their director of football and now accusatory fingers are pointing in the direction of their managing director (Ian Ayre).’
Liverpool declined to offer a response to the statement.
Ironically the SoS statement mirrors many of the complaints that Boston Red Sox fans have of Fenway Sports Group. A dysfunctional management team that is not on the same page, and an ownership that is tone death to the concerns of the fans.
What do you think of FSG’s and SoS letters?