Saturday, July 23, 2005

Daily Telegraph: The Sporting Week

The Sporting Week: We were having the time of our lives, getting our gloating in while we could
(edited from longer article)
By Jim White
(Filed: 23/07/2005)
Daily Telegraph

This afternoon in Kingston-upon-Thames, FC United of Manchester will face their biggest challenge yet when they take on that other breakaway fan-run team, AFC Wimbledon, in a pre-season friendly.

FCUM were formed immediately after the Glazer hijack of Manchester United by a group of fans who could no longer stomach the idea of supporting a club run by those with little inkling for their heritage or their meaning.

Talking this week to one of those who will be going to south-west London for the match, it became clear that for many the American takeover was the final straw. The fan spoke of his relief at no longer being emotionally tied to United. Despite being a season ticket holder for years, it was something, he felt, he should have done a long time ago. At last he was free just to enjoy a gentle afternoon's football, with none of the suffocating commercialism and nauseating self-aggrandisement of the Premiership.

This would be a match without ego and money and power, the three things that had ruined the game at the top, he said. And the best thing of all, he reckoned? This afternoon, he will not be obliged to watch Rio Ferdinand.