Having read a great piece by Dan Ivery on Birmingham City’s complex ownership structure, I thought it would be good to give my verdict on it.
I think it’s baffling how the complexity of the ownership structure has gone unnoticed by the authorities in the EFL. It’s an ownership so complex that you don’t know where to start.
All the people involved in the running of the club are using it as a means for financial gains. And knowing now that the value of the stock is taking precedence over fortunes on the pitch, its hard to see a way out of this catastrophic mess.
If the ownership can continue to make profits via the stock, then there is no reason as to why they won’t focus their attention to matters on the pitch.
The staff, players and management are like toys. They’re left in their own world, but the ownership are in a completely different world, forming this spaghetti junction, so much so that they seem confident that no one will catch them.
Clearly, the fans are totally insignificant. The ownership have no reason to care on their part, but they must know that they are ruining a club, which has always had its fans at the centre of it.
If fans can’t make their voices heard, then what chance is there of the owners going?
Suffice to say, it’s becoming easier for owners to come in, talk the talk and pretend to fans that everything is going swimmingly.
The EFL’s Fit and Proper and Test has always been ambiguous and it remains to be seen whether its contents will change. The Hong Kong owners were able to dodge all laws, but even the supposed great minds of the EFL authorities won’t be able to work out the ins and outs at St Andrews.
There is no reason for the ownership to push for a spot in the Premier League. They are happy with their successes in trading. They are solely focused on the income, detaching themselves far away from the phenomenon that is Birmingham City Football Club.
The club is an asset that is being sucked into the trap of bad ownership. The club will continue to exist and while normal clubs will look to press ahead with January signings and the season ahead, the Hong Kong ownership will sit behind their wealthy stocks and pluck players to sign at will. With such ease that they don’t need to care, because they have financial security to the extremes.
So surely, enough money is being made, so that signings can be made and progress can be seen on the pitch. But that seems a far-fetched reality. The ownership are stuck in their egotistical selves hoping that the club dies off. What a relief that Blues haven’t been relegated to League One yet, but that probability might become a reality, if we let this continue and the owners don’t stop in their tracks.
And in terms of the playing front, it seems difficult to know what will happen. It’s clear that managers have always been like toys to the ownership, so who knows how Karanka is able to deal with them.
If the structure at the top isn’t right, then how can we expect the structure in terms of the playing front to be smooth?
I sincerely hope that for Karanka’s sake that what the ownership have said to him aren’t a bunch of false promises, because that’s going to prove too fatal for us. The club will always be standing, but it’s such a miracle that the club is continuing on its weak foundations under the watchful eyes of the EFL. But even they don’t know what they’re watching most of the time.
It’s hard to get into the nitty gritty of ownership structures, until we properly care and want to find the answers. The EFL don’t have particular allegiances, so will be looking at every club in the pyramid at a minor glance. There needs to be more vigorous testing of these ownership structures.
If only someone had stopped these owners before they arrived, eh?