Gold and Sullivan aren’t to blame for Blues’ current plight

20

April 30, 2014 by bluenosebible

By Nat Peters

David Gold has this week come out and defended the decision of he and his business partner David Sullivan to sell the Birmingham City to Carson Yeung. Obviously, with the exception of a League Cup win and a spell playing in European competition, the Yeung regime has pretty much presided over one long and particularly gory car crash. No matter what Blues fans think of players and managers that have come and gone (and remain), the buck ultimately stops with those in control of the club. They have totally ruined it.

This week we are facing the very real prospect of relegation to the third tier of English football for the first time in a long time. Defeat at Bolton on Saturday and we will be a League One team next season. And it will be a League One team with a very uncertain future ahead of it; you only have to look at the likes of Coventry and Portsmouth to see where this could eventually end up. It’s worth remembering that we were actually relegated to the Third Division in Gold and Sullivan’s first full season in charge in 1994, but that was met by an immediate return to the second tier with a league trophy and an Auto Windscreens shield to boot. I personally can’t see such a rapid rise happening this time around if the worst came to the worst.

bluesautowindscreens95But where we are isn’t down to David Gold and Sullivan. They, with the help of the excellent Karren Brady (well excellent in the business sense, no matter what you think of her as a person), left the club in the Premier League, in a great financial position with a great stadium (well on three sides of it anyway). They also sold up at a time when people wanted them gone, and sold up to a person/consortium who Blues fans’ heralded at the time.

And that is the crux of all this. Ultimately if they had delayed the takeover in 2009, or caused its collapse, they would’ve been lynched by Blues fans. The vast majority (including myself) were wetting ourselves with excitement when we heard the way they were talking about Blues, the plans they had, the money they said they were going to spend. If they hadn’t been allowed to take over the club there would have been a riot.

People say that Gold and Sullivan should/would have realised just how dodgy Yeung was and should have kept their promise to only let the club go to someone who would have run it properly. They may well have realised that Yeung may not have been all what he seemed, but ultimately they made most of their money in the adult entertainment industry; they must be used to dealing with unscrupulous people, yet they can still do business with them. And I go back to my original point; what if they had come out and said “nah we won’t sell up to Yeung because he seems dodgy” – the fans would’ve been very frustrated to say the least.

259782_1People also say that “well it was obvious from the first failed takeover attempt (in 2007) that Yeung didn’t have the money”. Between the failed takeover attempt and the eventual takeover two years elapsed; what if Yeung had come into more money? What if he had found backers with significant funds? Hell what if Yeung himself believed he had the backers? How were they to know either way? All I know is that Blues fans definitely did believe that Yeung had funds, and it took nearly two years for it to become fully clear just how duff this regime was. Without the use of a crystal ball, I’m not sure how Gold and Sullivan could have realised either.

£80million. A helluva lot of money. People have slated the previous regime for taking so much. Why? Ultimately, if you had a house worth £100k and someone offered you £300k for it, would you turn it down? Of course you wouldn’t. It is hardly the fault of the seller that the buyer was willing to spend such a large sum on acquiring the club.

The disparaging comments that were made by Gold and Sullivan about Yeung have been pointed at as proof that they knew he was a cowboy. Those comments were made around the time of the failed takeover attempt in 2007, of course the two Davids were going to be peeved that something they assumed was a done deal had fallen apart. It doesn’t mean that they have to automatically stop trading with that same person/party for life; people who think that are naïve to say the least.

There are a very small, narrow minded bunch of people who castigate the two Davids for selling out to people who didn’t take the club forward. Ultimately, I will always point out to these people that we were absolutely delighted when Gold and Sullivan sold up, I think a lot of us had seen a takeover like the one at Man City and thought “I’ll have summa’ that, giss’ it!”. We asked for the cake, we ate the cake; now we are suffering the diabetes.

bluesfanabusingsullivanYou could also argue that we absconded any right to be passed on to some Jack Walker type Blues fan when Sullivan and Gold left when we started giving them so much abuse. OK, we were relegated in 2008. OK, they probably made mistakes which contributed to that relegation, the previous relegation and our general stagnation as a football club. But, after all the work they had done at Blues did they deserve the abuse they received after we were relegated in 2008. Definitely not in my opinion.

I think this will always come down to the crux though. Those fans slating David Gold and David Sullivan now were the same people wetting themselves when Yeung took over and made his promises. Those promises never came true, and right now we are one game away from oblivion, but don’t start slating people like David Gold and Sullivan; ultimately these people did a very good job at Stan’s, and to be honest we should be grateful not galled at the contribution they made.

They dragged this club from the dark ages, and their investment gave to me as a relatively young Bluenose many a happy memory. They should have gratitude, not abuse thrown upon them.

 

You can read more of Nat’s work on his blog here: http://nattubes.wordpress.com/

Advertisements

20 thoughts on “Gold and Sullivan aren’t to blame for Blues’ current plight

  1. mike says:

    i agree and i defy anyone who says if they are offered stupid money for something they wouldnt take advantage of it they turned the club around and made them a profitable club , my only gripe with them is if they had backed blues like they have west ham who knows what we could have achieved , because there have been many stories of players that got away because lack of forsight from board

    • natjpeters says:

      To be fair I think ambition was shown with regards to bringing players in at times; unfortunately the fact that some manager pissed a lot of serious money up the wall may have stopped them releasing similar amounts of dough in later years in my opinion

  2. Oldbluenose says:

    I never particularly liked David Sullivan, but in fairness, he was the main ” money-man ” and did a good job for us, Until some fans to abuse too far and frightened the life out of his Son, !!!.

  3. Mark says:

    Sorry but the Sully and the Golds had a strategic plan to make the club profitable and therefore sellable and then find some Far East mug to pay over the odds for us. Yeung and co. were far from being the first Far East group that they tried to pimp the club to, I personally met a group from South Korea who were looking to buy the club years before Yeung and co. I can only guess that they knew they were going to be ripped off and walked away. Fair play to the Golds and Sully for rescuing the club when we needed it and the little investment that we needed to kick on and progress, but not enough credit is given to the back office staff who helped take that little investment and build up our great club and who are still keeping the club going on a shoestring at the moment, its a miracle that we have survived to the end of the season, lets hope for one more miracle against Bolton. KRO.

    • natjpeters says:

      I’m not doubting the fact that you met that group, but there could have been 100 reasons why they didn’t buy the club that weren’t simply related to the fact that they thought they were going to get ripped off.

      Ultimately Gold and Sullivan did probably get a price way over the value of the club, but whose fault is that, theirs or Yeung’s?

      And yep I agree, the back office staff have been outstanding.

  4. SurreyBluenose says:

    Although they say different, they earned a lot of money from the club as well.

    They always said they would hand the club over to someone who would progress it – as soon as £80m was waved in front of their faces, they were off.

    They always said that they never took a salary from the club. No, but they each took a £250,000 consultancy fee each year, and even paid it to themselves a year in advance after Yeung took charge. Hence Pannu suing them after Yeung took over.

    Brady “allegedly” smashed a computer prior to the handover of the club. Not to mention the re-negotiated contract that Gold and Sullivan gave her after the takeover (whilst they were still in charge) that entitled her to 12 months notice and use of her company porsche for this period.

    As soon as they realized that there was no free stadium from the council at the NEC, and the casino development at Saltley fell through they weren’t interested. Ironic that they ended up with a club with a free stadium. Go figure.

    Summary: They screwed us.

    • Steve says:

      Very accurate summary. To add to this there was the “box” in a prime position given free to Brady for a year. Also I remember a reporter asking what would happen to the money from selling St Andrew’s stadium. Rather taken aback the response was “consultancy fees”.

  5. Retired&Weary says:

    I don’t buy this “if someone offers you 3 times what your house is worth anybody would snap their hands off” defence. If this does happen surely you would be suspicious & be worried stiff that the police will come knocking any time soon? Look at it another way, if you buy (say) a £500 iphone from a bloke in the pub for £100, it’s probably been stolen. You would then be just as guilty as the bloke who stole it.

    • natjpeters says:

      It happens, not often but it does happen, where someone gets way over the odds for their house for a variety of legimiate reasons. And I don’t see why Gold and Sullivan would be chased down by the Old Bill to be honest…

  6. Fredpick says:

    Sullivan and Gold came along and did a calculated busines investment, they paid a £1.00 for the club and invested just the amount needed to do the job I.e. Con the fans back getting them to pay far too much for tickets promising them things that never was going to happen. They then sold up making a fortune after taking the heart and sole out of the club by constantly berating the fans.

    • natjpeters says:

      Ultimately in their time here we went up two divisions, did sign some top players, regularly whacked the V***a, reached a cup final rebuilt three sides of the ground (though in my opinion it was wrong that they hung all their hopes on a new stadium rather than just rebuilding the Main Stand to bring the capacity to well over 30,000).

      They weren’t perfect, but as fans I think we did pretty well out of their regime tbh, i never understood the animosity towards them in their final years here and I don’t understand it now. Compared to most of the owners the club have had in the present and the past (by all accounts) they were like manna from heaven

  7. chris says:

    Sorry, you’re the narrow minded one with your blinkered view.

    I am not slating them now (except to reply to this article) and wasn’t wetting myself when the ‘pretender’ walked in either.
    I have ignored his bleating in the media but can’t ignore a Blues fan dismissing other fans valid points based on facts.
    There were quite a few Blues fans who didn’t want Yeung and his cohorts and you either are ignoring those views or were so wetting your pants over none existent money, you didn’t bother to read or listen to them.
    Because you’re feeling the pain of being fooled don’t think all of us were.
    They are rightly to blame, as they sold the club, its history and its fans down the river; a football club is not a house.
    They were responsible for a part of our and the City’s heritage and history and treated it like a car sale.
    You seem biased in your views or just don’t do your research as you seem to forget that Yeung approached Reading and Villa and both their owners told him to go forth.
    Two clubs denied him, but not G&S.

    Doug Ellis was being hounded far more to sell Villa by the fans than G&S were at Blues, yet he never waivered from his goal of selling to someone who had his own fortune and the best interests of Villa.
    He only sold after about three seasons of trying to find a buyer when he knew he had found a new rich, stable owner, not a consortium and not someone who still had to raise the capital.
    Ellis did his homework and had Yeung checked out by expert finance people, G&S can’t have done this or they would have come to the same conclusion. If they did come to the same conclusion then they did sell us down the river.
    It’s one or the other, incompetence or they knew, which is it?

    I did checks at the time and got slated on forums etc for saying this guy (Yeung) is not rich.
    There was very little to say he had the real money to buy a Prem club.
    The best i could find was that he was worth about £50 or £60 million, which is not even enough to run a Championship side looking for promotion.
    He had to live off that money and most of it would not be cash, but what his businesses and property were worth and who knows what if any loans he had.
    G&S proved that, they were worth over £1000 million and still struggled to run a Prem Club.

    Then fans were deluded and kept saying Yeung was going to spend £40 million per season when he actually said he would spend £40 million per season INCLUDING WAGES and our wages at the time were between £20 and £30 million. Says it all and by including wages proved that he had no real money.

    Yes, i wanted G&S to either go or spend slightly more on the team, either in wages or in transfer fees, but i still wanted a stable club and that is what they brought to the club, stability, that was also the reason i bought thousands of shares in BCFC, because they were stable people.
    I didn’t want to sell my shares when they sold us out, but i had no confidence in Yeung taking over so i sold my shares rather than keeping them, i didn’t want to risk losing it all and i was right.

    You say “All I know is that Blues fans definitely did believe that Yeung had funds”.
    Again your statement is somewhat untrue MANY believed his hype not all, quite a few did not.
    You state he may have made more money in those two years, do you really believe that?
    If, he had made another £50 million in two years, don’t you think that money would have been traceable and in some company accounts somewhere!! The media would have picked up on his good fortune / business acumen, but they didn’t because it never happened.

    Your pro G&S argument flounders on the fact that he paid £80 million for something worth £42 million, any one worth their salt would ask why, unless you don’t care about the club you are selling.
    It also flounders on you saying in the next two years he made £50 million, because in fact he took a bridging loan for £57 million.
    FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, A BRIDGING LOAN.
    HE HAD NOT GOT THE MONEY.
    If your rich enough to purchase a Prem club you should not be having a loan of any description, if you do, it should ring alarm bells.
    I also said at the time why doesn’t he buy the club while we are in the Championship (08-09), the club’s shares were only worth £22 to £25 million during that season.
    Only a complete pretender struggling to raise funds would not buy at that price rather than the Prem share price which was always in the £40 millions.
    The only reason for not buying in the Championship would be the fear of the club not gaining promotion and Yeung having to fund the club, for maybe years in the Championship out of his own money, which AGAIN PROVED he did not have real wealth.
    Only a couple of months before the takeover he was having a Grandtop share issue to raise funds, because and I’ll state it again, HE DIDN’T HAVE THE MONEY.
    Please deal in facts, (three above),.
    Saying he might have made more money in those two years is wrong.

    If G&S had done due diligence and asked for traceability of the funds, they could have found what the Hong Kong courts have recently found.
    G&S should also have INSISTED on knowing his partners and then checked them out also.
    They could have done a great deal more to check them out and protect the club and it’s staff.

    When did they spend £10 million on a player at BCFC or take on a £70 million debt, the best they did at BCFC was a £6 million player and £22 million debt, they always held back at Blues like the “06-07 relegation season when all they signed in January to try and stay up was over the hill Sutton, League One Campbell & unknown Latka.
    Says it all, compared to who they have signed at WHU.

    You also don’t mention how G&S dumped Steve Bruce by not offering him a new contract and blamed the new owners. Quote; “However, Bruce later claimed that Birmingham’s then Managing Director had “shafted” him on a new contract with the club” http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/steve-bruce-blasts-back-karen-1462220
    If it was my club as an owner I would not risk the management of the team over a prospective owner that can’t even find the money to buy it outright, but they did.

    I would agree if you said about 80% of the fans thought Yeung coming in was a good idea, but most didn’t look past the headlines, but again there were still some dissenting voices.

    • Steve says:

      Fantastic piece Chris. Could do with you teaming up with Dan of OP to vet the next prospective owners.

    • Mark says:

      Great piece Chris, certainly opened my eyes a bit.you should send it into the mail mate.

    • natjpeters says:

      “There were quite a few Blues fans who didn’t want Yeung and his cohorts and you either are ignoring those views or were so wetting your pants over none existent money, you didn’t bother to read or listen to them.
      Because you’re feeling the pain of being fooled don’t think all of us were.”

      “I would agree if you said about 80% of the fans thought Yeung coming in was a good idea, but most didn’t look past the headlines, but again there were still some dissenting voices.”

      I think you’ll find that I reffered to the vast majority, not every single Blues fan, so basically I inferred what you’ve just said.

      “You seem biased in your views or just don’t do your research as you seem to forget that Yeung approached Reading and Villa and both their owners told him to go forth.
      Two clubs denied him, but not G&S.
      Doug Ellis was being hounded far more to sell Villa by the fans than G&S were at Blues, yet he never waivered from his goal of selling to someone who had his own fortune and the best interests of Villa.
      He only sold after about three seasons of trying to find a buyer when he knew he had found a new rich, stable owner, not a consortium and not someone who still had to raise the capital.”

      Doug Ellis, for want of a more eloquent phrase, talks a lot of shit. I would take anything he says with a truckload of salt; it’s funny that he only came out with all this after Yeung had been arrested.

      And you are wrong about Reading; I’ve just read an article at the time of Yeung’s first takeover attempt in which John Madejski states that he had never even heard of Yeung, never mind met him and had an offer made to him.

      And the treatment of G + S after that Blackburn game was disgusting, the V***a fans never did that sort of thing to Ellis IIRC. I’m not surprised they wanted to get out after that.

      “There was very little to say he had the real money to buy a Prem club.
      The best i could find was that he was worth about £50 or £60 million, which is not even enough to run a Championship side looking for promotion.
      He had to live off that money and most of it would not be cash, but what his businesses and property were worth and who knows what if any loans he had.
      G&S proved that, they were worth over £1000 million and still struggled to run a Prem Club.”

      “You state he may have made more money in those two years, do you really believe that?
      If, he had made another £50 million in two years, don’t you think that money would have been traceable and in some company accounts somewhere!! The media would have picked up on his good fortune / business acumen, but they didn’t because it never happened.”

      It’s not that infeasible that his fortune could have increased in a couple of years. And as i’ve said, he may not have had the money all on his own but there was every possibility that he thought he has backers behind him.

      “It also flounders on you saying in the next two years he made £50 million, because in fact he took a bridging loan for £57 million.
      FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, A BRIDGING LOAN.
      HE HAD NOT GOT THE MONEY.
      If your rich enough to purchase a Prem club you should not be having a loan of any description, if you do, it should ring alarm bells.”

      A fair few clubs have been bought with borrowed money, Man United is one that immediately springs to mind.

      “The only reason for not buying in the Championship would be the fear of the club not gaining promotion and Yeung having to fund the club, for maybe years in the Championship out of his own money, which AGAIN PROVED he did not have real wealth.”

      Or G + S didn’t want to sell the club for a much lower price than they’d have been able to if we were a PL club. Or the fact that a lot fo foreigners just aren’t interested in football outside the PL.

      “they always held back at Blues like the “06-07 relegation season when all they signed in January to try and stay up was over the hill Sutton, League One Campbell & unknown Latka.
      Says it all, compared to who they have signed at WHU.”

      Probably because Steve Bruce had pissed so much money up the wall on dud players before that. Steve Bruce’s bad management took us down that season, not Gold and Sullivan being tight. Their biggest mistake was to keep so much faith in him.

      You also don’t mention how G&S dumped Steve Bruce by not offering him a new contract and blamed the new owners. Quote; “However, Bruce later claimed that Birmingham’s then Managing Director had “shafted” him on a new contract with the club”

      Bruce was/is bitter that he had to pay back money (which he wasn’t entitled to) from some obscure clause in the Blues contract he walked out on. He walked out on blues because (yet again) he realised he had signed a load of duds who were going to take us down. In his last seven games as Blues manager we managed to win four points; he saw the chance to get a fat pay rise elsewhere as well as a chance of a fat bonus if he managed to keep Wigan up and he walked.

      • natjpeters says:

        And just finally, i would reaffirm that most Blues fans were delighted when G + S sold up to Yeung; imagine the reaction if they hadn’t. they probably didn’t want to face that and after what happened at the Blackburn game I don’t blame them.

  8. mark says:

    in reply to chris like you I wasn’t happy when carson took over as I felt he didn’t have the funds either and knew nothing about running a football club. as far as gold ,Sullivan and brady go I thought they did a good job of running the club and if you want the best you have to pay for the best, who would you rather pay a million pound a year to for running the club pannu or Karen brady ? gold and Sullivan also backed their managers in the transfer market and you wouldn’t have seen dugarry in a blues shirt if not for them. yes sulilvan could provoke the fans with his comments but the golds were gentlemen as I met david gold once.

  9. Andy says:

    Chris. Fantastic piece mate well done.

  10. Eric says:

    Gold and Sullivan were great. Many Blues fans did the club no favours by driving them out.

  11. Blooflame says:

    I don’t blame them in the least. I’m a bluenose and I’d have left this club where I found it, as they did, had fans turned on me the way they did. When “the wonderful” Steve Bruce walked out on our club (as he always does) and we were relegated the die was cast. The fans turned on the board for some reason, spat at them! threatened their families that day….you bet they decided to ditch us! There are fans on those terraces and probably on here who were responsible for that. They are the ones to be blamed, for chasing off the best thing that ever happened to BCFC, the seeds were sown way back then.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

BLUES 888 SPECIALS

Next Match Special

Charity of Choice

Blues Collective Charity of Choice

Issue 300

%d bloggers like this: