Life is quite rightly treasured and held sacred by every right thinking individual; it’s the reason why we’re so aggrieved when people die prematurely, through illness or accident, through no fault of their own. As decent caring people we strive to understand and eradicate illness that causes premature death, we strive to understand accidents so that others won’t suffer in a similar fashion in the future. We make things better, we strive for truth; acts that ensure victims of these tragedies don't die in vain; this is their legacy.
Margaret Thatcher’s death will undoubtedly see the myth of Thatcherism rise like a phoenix from the ashes to give birth to an attempt to rewrite history, to airbrush out some of the most divisive political policies of the twentieth century that were perpetrated during a reign that waged an unforgivable war on both a way of life and a political belief system.
Untold by the media, many will see it as a desperate act of shameless hypocrisy, by those about to prosecute this hollow attempt at revisionism; those who are the same breed of jingoistic flag waving natives of a land of hope and glory who ultimately betrayed her by drowning their own self-styled ruler of the waves in a Shakespearian tragedy which was to lead them to a lingering death which would eventually cast them out into the wilderness despite a short lived return on the backs of the fence sitters who now face their own richly deserved oblivion at the hands of the electorate.
That they will mercilessly use her death in an attempt to support their own political failings is beyond contempt, but watch it happen, listen to the false platitudes, raise an eyebrow at the attempted glorification of a time when the south-east prospered whilst Northern England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland burned and was left to managed decline.
Thatcher came to power in 1979, she bastardised a prayer to St Francis of Assisi when she spoke these words, “Where there is discord, may we bring harmony. Where there is error, may we bring truth. Where there is doubt, may we bring faith, and where there is despair, may we bring hope."
During the next eleven and a half years Thatcher decimated the struggling nationalised industries and sold off all the profitable ones to the people who owned them in the first place who then sold them for a quick profit; industries that today are predominantly in foreign ownership and are charging our own people crippling amounts for their services, yet the revisionists will say she put the Great back in Britain?
Not even Evertonians were spared Thatcher’s mindless actions. Following Heysel, Thatcher put pressure on the FA who relented and withdrew all English clubs from the next seasons European competition. UEFA, given a free hand, endorsed the ban and league champions Everton were excluded from Europe. A few days later FIFA extended the ban worldwide. Evertonians, guilty of nothing, were being punished by a government who hated a city, we couldn’t understand why our club did nothing as only somebody spineless doesn’t fight for what is right. Everton’s chairman in 1985 was Tory grandee Philip Carter. We left Anfield to rid ourselves of one, John Houlding, and here was another, he’s still on the board today, allegedly.
Get down to Goodison this Friday, 5th of April, and support our youth team in their quest to capture the FA Youth Cup. We're playing Norwich in the quarter final. Details of special tickets can be seen on the leaflet on the left, £20 for a hospitality style package and your chance to meet some great Everton heroes. The proceeds from this hospitality event will be split equaly between Everton in the Community and The Everton Former Players Foundation, two great charities close to the hearts of all Evertonians.
Supporters Club Cycle Challenge April 2013 “We’re Everton Aren’t We?”
Everton Football Club is embarking on a new charity challenge for the 2012/13 season.
This challenge will see a group of people cycle from the Stadium of Light to Goodison Park; the route is 202 miles and will take the team four days to complete.
We are calling this challenge “We’re Everton Aren’t We??”, as this team of people have dedicated their lives to Everton Football Club for as long as each of them can remember, they live and breathe the Club watching the team home and away, these are the people of Everton FC.
The aim is to raise a staggering £50,000; funds being split equally and immediately reinvested into the vital work of Everton in the Community and the Everton Former Players Foundation, sister charities of Everton. For the past 25 years, Everton in the Community have delivered a range of award-winning programmes promoting health, education, social inclusion and equality of opportunity across Merseyside using the power of sport.
During the last year alone, they have provided on-going developmental opportunities to over 30,000 participants and with support from their loyal fan base they are aiming to raise an incredible £1m in this jubilee year.
After what some would call a period of reflection after the PR disaster that was Stan Collymore’s recent radio show, others would call it keeping your head down and hoping for the best, Everton’s Ministry of Truth have gone into overdrive on the back of the annual Populous Premier League fan survey that revealed, amongst other things, that we have the best stewards, that we have the third most visited website in the top flight, that we offer the second best value tickets and have one of the most welcoming grounds in the country. All perfectly understandable, we are The People’s Club after all and we should be best as we’ve had more time than anyone to perfect it; we’ve been delivering top flight football longer than any other club in the country.
What wasn’t understandable was why so many people had the perception that Everton’s corporate sales are so good or why the 84% of Evertonian participants, who felt Everton were a well-run club, identified that having a sustainable financial policy and a long term vision were the two most highly ranked factors in order of importance.
Sustainability and vision aren't two words that spring to mind when thinking about Everton’s hierarchy because if this were true it would manifest itself in the form of increased revenue in the accounts which would then find its way to the manager; it doesn’t because, just like the perception that the earth is flat, it isn’t true.
KEIOC have continually warned fans of the message in the accounts, that as a business we’re getting worse and worse. We’re not going to explain about key metrics or asset debt ratios as it’s clear it’s not sinking in with some people, many people. We’ll just explain to you that we’re that well run that whilst every other “top flight” club in the premiership receives millions of pounds from their kit supply deals with major kit manufacturers our club receives nothing; the effect of which is that whilst other clubs strengthened in the January window our manager, despite asking the board for money, was left twiddling his thumbs.
An interesting academic research paper, which puts forward a methodology for valuing premier league football clubs has created great interest amongst Everton fans following recent press coverage.
The paper has been produced by football finance expert Tom Markham, someone who has an impeccable pedigree; Tom’s a qualified accountant and a former foreign exchange trader with an MBA in Football Industries from the University of Liverpool, has collaborated on projects with national associations, clubs, agencies and sports consultancies. About to complete a PhD in Football Finance at Henley Business School’s ICMA Centre, his new research reveals a reliable valuation model, universally applicable to Premier League clubs.
Rather than read the headlines which inevitably concentrates on the more sensational aspects, that West Bromwich Albion are worth more than Everton will have shocked many of an Everton persuasion, we at KEIOC recommend that you download the study in full as it contains some excellent research. You can download Tom Markham’s paper here.
The methodology put forward in this paper is called the Markham Multivariate Model [MMM] which is defined as:
Club Valuation = [Revenue + Assets] x [Net Profit +Revenue] x [Stadium Capacity %] + [Wages Ratio %]
We'd encourage everyone to download Everton's latest accounts, here, and see if you arrive at the figure the chart in the paper indicates is the value of Everton FC, £112,300,000. It should be mentioned at this juncture that there is a good reason why academics don’t buy football clubs; business and academia are two different worlds. A person owning the Titanic, which was built for £5m over a century ago, wanting to sell it for £400m, which is based on a theoretical value calculated using the future revenue derived from just about every person on the planet wanting to visit a museum containing the Titanic, isn’t going to get any offers because there are some obvious flaws that the calculation fails to accommodate, and like the Titanic, Everton is registered in Liverpool.
Be careful what you wish for along with other mindless sound bites such as, “better the devil you know” are the often heard cries of the individual who believes in safety in numbers, the person who’s happy to believe that a minority voicing its opinion is wrong, not on merit, not upon inspection of what they’re saying but solely on the flawed logic that the minority must be wrong whilst the majority must be right; a somewhat confusing numerical contention relying on the mistaken principle beliefs that the minority has been correctly identified in the first place and that the silent majority, the majority that are always silent, are against the minority, a flawed position which they’re encouraged to adopt by the drowning man they’re so eager to defend, a position that was so accurately demonstrated with Destination Kirkby.
Life is full of people without whom, if we’d listened to the majority, we’d still be hunter gatherers living in caves. Minorities who were ridiculed, but were ultimately proven right. One person believed the earth was round whilst the majority knew it was flat, probably because they read it in Ye Olde Echo.
Of course hindsight is a wonderful thing and on the subject of Everton, let’s not concern ourselves about minorities and majorities, let’s not concern ourselves over being popular or unpopular, let’s concern ourselves with right and wrong, who’s right and who’s wrong, what’s myth and what’s reality, what’s fact and what’s fiction, who’s telling the truth and who’s telling lies, who’s concerned about the club’s future and who’s concerned about something else.
To clear up any misunderstanding, we’re not in a popularity contest, we’re not here to make a profit by selling merchandise or tables at dinners, we’re not here to sell papers; we’re here because we’re passionate about our club and don’t want to see our club handed over to more unsuitable people on the sole basis of greed; greed that has been adequately demonstrated on more than one occasion.
For the last two seasons Everton has borrowed money from an offshore source. Nothing wrong with that you may say, nothing wrong particularly when the Premier League approve these loans and Everton provide information that the money, used to alleviate potential cashflow problems, has been secured at a lower interest rate than that for previous facilities.
These were provided by mainstream lenders, Barclays and Investec; that such borrowing is claimed to be, to use that dreaded phrase, “standard business practice” and is a mechanism that is widely used by many clubs and not just Everton is, frankly, neither here nor there.
Let’s clear something up once and for all, business finance is a fact of life, but if we’re going to talk about standard business practice let’s be honest on the subject; standard practice is for owners to invest in their businesses, but our owners, our board, have never invested a single penny in their business whatsoever and whilst it is true that other clubs do employ what is essentially a form of factoring or confidential invoice discounting, that is to say, bringing guaranteed money forward in the cashflow cycle, at an additional cost, Everton has pioneered the practice of not just factoring the current season’s income but the next season as well, a practice viewed as extremely dangerous by UEFA president Michel Platini.
The company Everton has borrowed tens of millions of pounds from, and in the course of repaying the money pay millions of pounds in interest, is the Vibrac Corporation whose registered office is at Vanterpool Plaza, Wickhams Cay 1, Road Town, Tortola, BVI. A familiar address to the discerning Evertonian, this is little more than an accommodation address for a firm of lawyers specialising in company formation, management of those companies in offshore havens and the operation of trusts. Their name is ICAZA, GONZALEZ-RUIZ & ALEMAN and a quick look through their BVI brochure confirms a couple of things that we should all be concerned about, “No public record is kept, of the identity of shareholders or directors.” and that “Directors have power to protect the assets of the company by transferring them to trustees, another company or legal entities for the benefit of the BVI Business Company, its beneficial owners or creditors.”
....bellowed Tony Blair in another life back in ’97. Education remains one of the cornerstones of how you judge a modern society, but what has it got to do with football? Quite a lot as it happens!
KEIOC along with our counterparts across the park, the Spirit of Shankly, are long proponents of promoting education in our communities hence why it featured as a key mainstay of The Football Quarter. This week has seen several examples of why education was always going to be a key feature.
Liverpool FC recently confirmed that it had linked up with the London School of Business & Finance (LSBF) to offer programmes in sports management and leadership. The programmes will be delivered at their Kirkby academy via a new institution called Education and Learning Initiative Training Entrepreneurs in Sport (ELITES).
In another separate development the Premier League has announced it has backed a new Government plan to invest in primary school sport. The Prime Minister David Cameron has pledged £150m a year to improve coaching for the youngest pupils in every state primary school and to inspire the Olympic and Paralympic stars of the future and is allowing the schools to decide how their budget is spent. Premier League chief, Richard Scudamore, said “Today’s commitment from the Government to invest in school sport should be welcomed and celebrated by anyone involved in sport at any level. High-quality multi-sport coaching delivered by bodies like Premier League clubs means that more schoolchildren will get the benefits that sport, as part of their education, delivers. We are looking forward to doing our bit."
The problem is that when entering the political arena you leave yourself open to becoming embroiled in duplicity. Take this £150m pledge from call me Dave. When education minister Gove eradicated the £162m budget for the School Sports Parnership [SSP] there was a national outcry from educationalists.
We’re no experts at KEIOC but we spot a con and a conman at twenty paces
Evertonian Andrew Jones died ten years ago today following a mindless and unprovoked attack in Liverpool’s City Centre during the early hours of Sunday March 9th 2003.
The attack on Andrew has obvious parallels to that which led to the death of our own colleague AJ Clarke, who also died in an unprovoked attack in the city centre which saw him floored by a single punch after which he hit his head on the pavement.
Following a night out with friends Andrew was walking home alone along Hanover Street at 03:15, he became involved in an altercation with a group of men and women before one of the group threw the fatal punch. A witness described Andrew as appearing to be apologetic after accidentally bumping into a member of the group.
Despite the police knowing the identities of the group of people, having an eyewitness description of both the incident and the person who threw the punch that led to Andrew’s death and attempting to bring a prosecution, nobody has been held accountable and Andrew’s killers are walking around free to do as they please; unlike Andrew and his family.
At this time I’m sure all Evertonian’s thoughts are with Andrew’s family.
A £10,000 reward has been offered for information leading to a successful prosecution of Andrew’s killer. Contact Merseyside police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.