Monday, October 30, 2006
Monday 30 Oct, 2006
FC United Of Manchester opened its doors to children and community groups from all over the surrounding area on Saturday, ensuring a carnival atmosphere for their North West Counties league division one home clash with Glossop North End.
People United Day saw the fan-run breakaway club join forces with different ethnic groups, schools and colleges from around Greater Manchester in order to celebrate the Kick It Out Week of Action.
The initiative was FC United's latest successful step towards promoting the club's ethos of inclusion for all fans who have previously found themselves excluded from watching top flight football.
In order to maximise the amount of young people taking part, admission was free to the under-16's and accompanying adults, with many of the thousand children present taking part in a lap of honour before kick off, as a multitude of banners were waved to applause from well over three thousand fans.
The fantastic atmosphere in the stands also had the desired effect on the home side's performance, spurring FC to a thumping 8-0 victory as they maintained their ten point lead at the top of the table.
FC United general manager Andy Walsh said: "People United Day is about honouring the pledge we made, as part of the manifesto we drew up at the start of the season, in terms of making FC United more accessible to all the communities of Greater Manchester.
"A tremendous amount of work has gone into contacting schools and various community groups around Greater Manchester and across the area, which is what you saw in terms of our parade of banners and the kids here.
"There were a thousand kids in the ground, so it's been a great success and something that's not been tried before."
"Football against racism has been going for a long time now and last season we put our toe in the water, but this season we've pushed the boat out a bit further."