The Football League: Incompetent, Corrupt, Arrogant Hypocrites – by Rob Atkinson


This was published last March, and the vast majority of it holds true ten months later. Too many with an anti-Cellino agenda are over-simplifying the matter, arguing that MC failed to pay the duty and therefore he’s not fit or proper. It was more complex than that last March and it remains so now. There are now, as there were then, matters of consistency, duty of care and conflicts of interest which have not been addressed or explained. Until someone can tell me how a convicted rapist remains “a significant person” at Blackpool FC, while the League have so vigorously pursued a man who has pumped millions into Leeds, then I shall rant on, unsatisfied. The title of the original piece requires neither modification nor explanation.

Life, Leeds United, the Universe & Everything

The Football League Panel, yesterday The Football League Panel, yesterday

The classic defence against a libel suit is “But it’s the truth, m’Lud”. I therefore have no qualms about the title of this blog, which I hope will be read by some of the parties to what was, ultimately, an indefensible decision to block Eleonora Sport’s proposed takeover of Leeds United.  In bending over backwards to apply the letter of their Owners and Directors (OAD) Test, the League have proven themselves unable – or more likely unwilling –  to see the wood for the trees.  They are blatantly guilty of pettifogging insistence on the letter, as opposed to the spirit, of the so-called “Fit & Proper” test.  The fact is that any set of regulations must be capable of interpretation so as to allow for the achievement of the greater good.  In other words, rules are for the guidance of wise men and the obedience…

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24 responses to “The Football League: Incompetent, Corrupt, Arrogant Hypocrites – by Rob Atkinson

  1. colin gill

    really is quite simple, this is a question of tax payment or non-payment. Fine but please tell me which of these chairmen of the football clubs that make up the Football League, have some time in their lives have not attempted to pay less tax than that is due against their name. I would gamble and say everyone of these “holier then thou” two faced prats that dare to govern the Football League. They are all guilty and therefore should all be charged as been infit to hold the position they hold,

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  2. sniffersshorts

    Rob did my nemesis Boots ever get a reply from the FL from his letter, did he …., even out of courtesy did he …. bunch of ….. the passion of the fans on this article is there to be seen….. ones blood is really boiling …… id like to boil the FL`s bottoms and fart in their general direction………..

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  3. Just wait until they punish the club for not forwarding them documents. The fuckers will stiff us with a points deduction to make sure we go down.

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  4. Have you read David Conn of the Guardian article on Cellino im in shock he says exactly what every Leeds fan thinks on this matter,im amazed a journalist backing Cellino and printing facts and not fiction.

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    • No, but I will make a point of reading it. I think I’ve had a go at Conn in the past, unless I’m think of soneone else, so it’ll be interesting to see him in supportive mode.

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    • In the article, the LUFC Financial Director claimed that banning Cellino would put the club at risk. The FL countered this by claiming that Cellino would continue as usual, exerting influence on members of his family to achieve his goals. Why is the FL continuing with this farce then? they know it will make no difference, but continue wasting time/money on something that becomes more and more obviously a witch hunt. Pillocks of the first water.

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    • sniffersshorts

      yes good article for once

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  5. You are spot on Rob. What about the doctrine of proportionality in applying such crude, unmanageable sanctions against Leeds United when all Cellino has done is address the financial problems. Doesn’t that count for anything? The reason that we have financial problems is down to Bates and that toad Harvey. They sold the club to GFH and the finance was built on debt. Smurf took his loot and didnt Harvey take a very substantial wage and obscene bonus out of the club? £1 million or thereabouts springs to mind. The FL are crooks, charlatans and cheats. They are very dishonest and represent no one except themselves. Who will open a case or write a book about the Cayman Island years and the mortgaging of future ticket sales by the worst directors in the league. Is that fit snd proper?

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    • Great points. They must think we were born yesterday. “Doctrine of proportionality”. I just LOVE that.

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      • I can’t disagree with your views Rob, or those of fellow Leeds fans, that the Football League are applying this particular rule without any balance; or, as Bluesman says, without any sense of proportion. We should not forget that the fit & proper rule/directors’ test (whatever) is there to help protect member clubs of the Football League. In this case, however, it can surely be argued that applying it to Cellino, disqualifying him, will actively work against the best interests of the club – i.e. liquidation and relegation are both possible, indeed likely. So why is there no discretion with regard to applying this rule? I would imagine there is, but the Football League would not choose to exercise it with regard to Leeds United because they wish to see leeds back in the third division, or worse.

        There is another reason that they have pursued this so doggedly. Having set the precedent for this disqualification of Cellino, they will be able to pursue him for far lengthier bans as and when he is convicted of 2nd and 3rd tax misdemeanours in Italy, in due course – and he will be. And so this uncertainty will never end. The Football League have set out their stall to screw Leeds united and Cellino is the route by which they will achieve it.

        Having said all of this, Cellino makes it easy for them, and makes LUFC an easy target. I despise the Football League (and the FA for that matter) for the same reason most Leeds fans do, but I am not a great Cellino fan either. His financial support of the club can’t be disputed, but his judgement is unsound, he is irrational, and he has an unfailing ability to court disaster – all of which adversely have impacted the club – both on and off the field.

        From the minute Cellino walked into Leeds, I had the undeniable fear that he would take our club to hell in a handcart, that (however inadvertently) he would ruin us. The injustice & the bastards at the Football league aside, the trait endearing Cellino to many fans; that “his heart is in the right place”, is simply not good enough. He is a fool and his continuing ownership will finish us.

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      • Balanced and rational. Cheers, Nobby.

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  6. If Karl Oyston was on the panel, Which other member with a vested interest did the league chose. In their position Blackpool have a vested interest in creating as much turmoil for Leeds as they can, hoping that it totally demoralises the club and sucks them into the relegation slots.An earlier suggestion of yours to boycott away games could just be the answer. Just think how much bad publicity it could create for the league, of our thousands visited the away grounds and cheered and chanted from outside of the ground, whilst listening to the commentary on Radio Leeds.
    With regard to your previous post expressing concerns over quotes from Mr Cellino naming three players who would leave if he was not at the club, The source of which I think is HITC who quoted the YEP. (proof of which I cannot find anywhere) I rate HITC on par with the Tabloids for reliability, and s–t stirring designed to cause unrest within the club. and would strongly advise anyone to totally ignor their fabrications according to them we have been trying to sign half the footballers in the world. (slight exaggeration, but you know what I mean)

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    • Isnt the millwall owner on the panel?

      Call it paranoia, but I’m thinking they are holding off on the punishment for not providing that documentation until they know where Leeds and millwall are likely to finish.

      If millwall look like finishing 3rd bottom, the bastards can keep them up by deducting us just enough points.

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  7. RoystonLUFC

    And they’re already lining their next salvo to fire at our club. I’m not sure how to do this but might I suggest that everyone reading this blog take some time to trawl around the shady pasts of various football club’s incumbents. We could probably amass a huge amount of data, such that we could use as evidence in a court case that we could instigate against the FL.
    Something has to change – we can’t continue like this, with a load of charlatans running our game. I found it quite humorous that in their report, they described themselves as democratically elected. Democratically elected by whom? By us, the masses? or by a small cabal of prejudiced incompetents? Judge that one for yourselves.

    Meanwhile, all those “Leeds fans” who are slating Cellino and, depressingly predictably, chanting “Cellino out” – you really need to decide whose side you’re on: us or them. Try looking at the previous “out” campaigns and see where they landed us. If you have a preference for any of the many white knights-in-waiting who are queuing up to buy Leeds, then try an “in” campaign instead. But if you don’t have any such positive ideas, then line up behind the team…and Cellino.

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  8. Mike Durham

    Great article Rob and well worthy of a repeat airing!! There are some wonderfully inciteful comments on here today which makes me swell with pride at being a member of the most exclusive club in the world ; The Whites…
    How about starting a fighting fund to play the myopic cretins at their own game? After enduring 50 years of the terminal cancer known as the fl ( no capital letters as it may imply respect ), I for one am willing to invest some time exploring the possibility that we as supporters have suffered distress, neglect and irreparable emotional damage at the hands of these oxygen thieves and consequently take legal action against the Incompetents ourselves?
    If we could get 20,000 people at £10 per head for argument’s sake, that’s £200k which I’m sure could more than cause a ripple in terms of adverse publicity and at least initiate any possible class action against them….
    Just an idea!!

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  9. Richard Atkins

    Blackpool fan disgusted with Football League for allowing Karl Oyston to sit on there panel in judgement of who is a fit and proper person to own Leeds Utd. Totally disgraceful and after writing 2 letters requesting them to confirm if he currently has a vote whilst undergoing investigation himself no reply. Feel sorry for Leeds I feel FL have a hidden agenda to keep you down.

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    • Thanks, Richard. I agree with you but, then, I’m paranoid o_O

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    • Why don’t the football league take fans opinions into account?

      I’m sure most of you guys at blackpool want rid of the oystons. Lord knows we wanted shut of bates and Harvey for long enough.

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