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Call for MPs to protect football in Fair Game week

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13 April 2022

AFC Wimbledon is taking part in Fair Game Week with a call for Government legislation to protect football.

Since its launch last year, we’ve been at the forefront of Fair Game, which is a group of 34 value-driven professional clubs, supported by 40 world-renowned experts, looking to develop realistic long-term solutions to the problems our national game faces.

There is no doubt that football is on a financial precipice. A study from Fair Game found that in 2020 – that’s before the pandemic –52% of our top clubs were technically insolvent. This means a club is only one bad owner or risky decision chasing football’s riches from ceasing to exist.

The impact of a town losing a hard-working community club cannot be underestimated.

As part of Fair Game week, clubs around the country are calling on politicians to support the Fan-led review into legislation. MPs are being urged to publicly back hard-working community clubs and support the legislation.

Don Trust Board member Niall Couper, who is CEO of Fair Game, said: “There’s no doubt that football is at a crossroads. The recent Fan-Led Review has given hope that a new future is on the horizon. But that hope risks being extinguished without legislation.”

Anuk Teasdale, a long-serving volunteer and one of our Supporter Liaison Officers, said: “The AFC Wimbledon story is the greatest in football and I’m incredibly proud of the club. Fair Game are here to talk about sustainability in football, which I support. What happened to us can never be allowed to happen to any other football fan again.”

Former Dons defender John Scales is a Fair Game Ambassador and he also talks passionately about supporting the cause in the video below, which features Anuk and Niall.

Andy Burnham, the Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “As a child I remember walking towards Goodison Park surrounded by the blue shirts. And the smells on the terraces. The sense of community and belonging. That needs to be protected.”

“We need our politicians to make a firm commitment to back Fair Game and implement all the recommendations of the Fan-Led Review.”

To mark the week, the 34 clubs of Fair Game will share tweets, videos, programme ads and messages on screens in grounds on match days, including stories of fans and their memories that make the game we love so special.

Fair Game has created an action for fans to appeal to MPs to work hard to ensure there is a new Football Bill in the next Queen's Speech. Visit this website to throw your weight behind the campaign.

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