Swansea City Supporters' Trust

Swans Trust support European initiative on wider Supporter involvement

Huw Cooze, Jill Evans MEP, Alan Lewis

Swans Trust back European Initiative on more Supporter Involvement in football governance.

Representatives from the Swansea City Supporters’ Trust were present at the launch of a Position Paper by Supporters Direct Europe at the European Parliament in Brussels earlier this week. Supporters Direct works in over twenty European countries, primarily in football but also increasingly across, rugby league, rugby union, and ice hockey. It promotes the value of supporter community ownership at sports clubs, and aim to create the conditions in which supporters can secure greater influence and ownership at their clubs.

Supporters Direct Europe (SD Europe) launched its first position paper, ‘The Heart of the Game: Why Supporters are Vital to Improving Governance in Football’, at an event hosted by Ivo Belet MEP.

SD Europe has produced this paper, now available online in order to set out its key policy positions, and provide evidence of how supporter ownership and involvement can help improve European football.

Key recommendations include: a revival of the members’ association model of club ownership, expansion of existing national networks of organised supporters’ groups, and the implementation of club licensing and financial fair play-type rules in all European leagues. Football’s key stakeholders were present at the event, including UEFA, national associations and leagues, and members of the European Parliament, Commission and Council.

Representatives from the growing European network of organised supporters’ groups working towards greater levels of involvement in the decision-making process and ownership structures of their clubs were also present.

The Swansea City Supporters’ Trust, with its 20% stake in the Premier League Club and a Supporter Director on the Club Board was recently described by Supporters Direct UK as its “Flagship Trust” and the Trust were invited to be represented at the Event.

The Trust issued an invitation to our four Welsh MEPs and received responses from two of them. We were delighted that Jill Evans and Derek Vaughan were able to take some time out of their busy schedule to attend and give their support to the event.

Commenting on the Event Swans Trust spokesperson Alan Lewis said “The Swansea City Supporters‘Trust is delighted to be part of the launch of the Supporters Direct Position Paper on more Supporter Involvement in football. The Trust is a clear example of how supporter involvement can be a positive influence at the highest level of the modern game and we welcome the support received from Members of the European Parliament who were present at the Event. The Trust also acknowledges the help and advice it has received from Supporters Direct, particularly during its initial formation”.

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