Saturday 19th March 2005, 3pm
Cambridge United v Wycombe Wanderers
Abbey Stadium, Cambridge
Cambridge Fans United, the Cambridge United supporters’ trust, are inviting all football fans to the Abbey Stadium for Cambridge United’s League 2 match against Wycombe Wanderers on Saturday 19th March, kick off 3.00pm. Fans from all over the country are being invited to attend the game in a bid to raise some funds for the cash strapped U’s as well as to show solidarity with other financially troubled clubs.
The club are struggling on and off the pitch. They currently sit 92nd in the Football League, facing relegation to the Nationwide Conference and the loss of vital grants from the Football League. On the financial front, the club is in dire straits, facing the prospect of not being able to pay its employees beyond the end of February. The supporters trust have set out to rise £500,000 to keep the troubled club alive over the next six months.
Directors of the League 2 strugglers sold The Abbey Stadium in November 2004 for £1.9 million to fellow director John Howard’s company Bideawhile to clear debts and to provide working capitol for the club. Originally fans were told the money would last for 26 months, but just two months later, the money has run out – largely the result of gross financial misjudgement and a lack of prudence in general over the last three years.
Previous Fans United events have been organised by Brighton, Doncaster and most recently Wrexham when all of these clubs have been in dire financial positions. Such days have been a significant boost to these clubs and are one important reason why all are still in existence today. However, not all clubs have been so lucky. Maidstone, Airdrie, Clydebank and Telford have all gone out of business and they will not be the last. CFU are determined to ensure that Cambridge United will not be next on the list.
Football Fans United in Endeavour co-organiser and Cambridge fan Scott Hilsden said, “As soon as the news broke about the clubs financial situation broke fans from Wrexham and Brighton started to organise a trip to The Abbey and fans suggested on the club’s official message board that we looked into holding a Fans United Day. The support from other club’s has been heartening and we hope to have a fantastic day with as many football fans as possible cheering the U’s on.”
CFU Chair Dave Matthews Jones is also in full support of the Fans United day, saying “The fans are the future of the club, and initiatives such as this prove just that. We will be working flat out to save this club for the fans of tomorrow.”
Fans that can’t attend are invited to send a shirt, scarf or pendant of their club to CFU. For further information, please e-mail
firstname.lastname@example.org, call 07957 344005 or
visit the website at www.cambridgefansunited.org.
If you would like to send a shirt scarf or banner please send to
PO Box 447
Cambridge Fans United was formed with three aims – to help Cambridge United Football Club, to help the Cambridge community and to help the fans. In legal terms, it is an Industrial and Provident Society – like the Co-op – and is fully democratic and non-profit making. All the funds raised by the organisation will be put to the football club and community use, but the main aim is to help raise the necessary funds to re-build the Abbey Stadium. The organisation enjoys the support of the Board of Directors of the Club, though is totally independent of it.