Brisbane Roar becomes the FOURTH A-League club whose fans stage a mass strike
Brisbane Roar become the FOURTH A-League club whose fans will stage a massive strike during the upcoming game to protest the competition’s widely condemned grand final change
- The Brisbane Roar fan group will pull out of the game against WSW on December 23
- They protest along with fans from Melbourne City, Melbourne Victory and Adelaide
- The decision to sell grand finals to Sydney for $10 million has enraged fans and players alike
- Roar fans say many won’t be returning until the APL reverses its decision
Outraged Brisbane Roar fans have joined their Melbourne Victory, Melbourne City and Adelaide United counterparts in planning a mass strike to protest the A-League’s decision to hold the grand finals in Sydney for the next three years .
Brisbane’s fan group – The Den – announced the move in a Facebook post on Wednesday night, reading: ‘The Den will join the protest of supporters groups across the league at our next home game, against West Sydney on the 23rd.’
They plan to walk out on the 20th minute, adding: “Unless change is seen, many will not come back.”
The news came a day after City and Victory supporters announced they were walking out in the 20th minute of Saturday night’s Melbourne derby, while United fans said they would pull out of their game on December 27.
The fans are lashing out after Monday’s announcement that the A-League has signed a $10 million deal with the NSW government to hold the biggest games of the season in Sydney until 2025.
Brisbane Roar fans will be flocking to their match against WSW on December 23rd
The Den joins fans of Melbourne Victory and Melbourne City, who will leave their derby clash on Saturday. Adelaide United fans will also walk out on December 27
It goes against A-League tradition, which rewards the top-ranked team with a grand final at home.
The top body of the Australian Professional Leagues has doubled down on the decision, despite huge backlash from fans and soccer stars that prompted APL director Anthony Di Pietro to resign.
Socceroos hero Craig Goodwin joined the chorus of condemnation on Monday, tweeting: “I don’t support it. I’m a player, but I’m also a fan. Like many fans across the country, and as I said, I too am disappointed with this decision.”
The Den’s Facebook post went on to say, “The den will be inactive for the foreseeable future. This includes all future finals series the club makes. This breaks our hearts to say but we see no other option for now.
Brisbane fans said ‘many are not coming back’ as they demand the APL reverse its decision
“This decision is not only anti-football but everything it stands for and the way it was made and communicated shows that the suits just don’t care about us, the fans.
“We have felt for too long that our club did not respect us enough and did not act in the best interest of the fans, and our chairman’s actions during this controversy confirm this.
‘Now the organization as a whole has shown that they don’t put the fans first either.
“The fans should always be the first priority.
“Football is not a business.
“If not for the fans, who is the A-Leagues for?”
Newcastle Jets fans have not announced any plans for a strike, but they did label the grand final substitution a “terrible decision” in a statement on Monday.
Angry Adelaide United fans posted the above statement on Facebook on Tuesday evening
A-League CEO Danny Townsend is in the line of fire as fans, players and clubs express their outrage over the $10 million deal with the NSW government. He defended the highly controversial agreement on Tuesday despite growing backlash
“Didn’t they see what 33,000 local fans packed into McDonald Jones Stadium did for the city?” They wrote.
‘Good luck selling out a Sydney stadium if no Sydney team makes it to the GF. Sometimes money isn’t everything.’
On Tuesday, Melbourne Victory chairman Anthony Di Pietro tendered his resignation as director of the APL in response to the controversial move.
“It has become clear that in order to act in the best interests of Melbourne Victory and football in Victoria, I had to step down as a board member of APL,” Di Pietro said in a club statement.
Western United and Wellington Phoenix also publicly opposed the move. United argued that their fans “have the right to attend a grand final in their home state, should we manage to earn the right to do so.”
Phoenix added that they had not been consulted on the decision and echoed United’s sentiments. “Our preference is for both the men’s and women’s finals of the A-League, as has been the case so far in the city with the highest placed qualifier.”