Thursday, February 07, 2008

Rebels fury at Bury's call-off

Trevor Baxter

7/ 2/2008

FC United fans were denied a chance to remember the Munich dead after their Unibond League game against Woodley Sports at Gigg Lane was postponed.

The Rebels believe landlords Bury breached the ground-share agreement between the two clubs.

But Shakers director Iain Mills defended the League Two side's decision to call off the fixture.

FC United officials attempted to move the Division One North clash to Woodley.

But this proved impossible because of lack of time.

The non leaguers issued a statement last night that said: "The referee declared the pitch fit to play and the match was due to go ahead as scheduled.

"However, a director of Bury FC unilaterally took the decision that he would call off the game.

"FC United believe this to be a breach of our ground-share agreement and we will be seeking further advice.

"A minute's silence for the 23 people who perished in the Munich tragedy had been planned."

The club was also denied an opportunity to collect their Unibond club-of-the-month award for their four straight wins in January.

Board member Jules Spencer told M.E.N. Sport: "It was annoying enough that a Bury director took a unilateral decision to postpone the game after the pitch had been passed fit.

"But it was exacerbated by the fact that it was February 6 and supporters had been looking forward to paying their own tributes.

"We know Bury's games take precedent and Tuesday night's match had been re-scheduled.

"But we'd been given assurances the club could turn things round within 24 hours and get the ground ready.

"We have a good relationship with the majority of Bury officials who have been helpful to us in the past. But we feel this could have been avoided."

Bury director Mills insisted the decision was taken for the benefit of both clubs.

Mills said: "It was unrealistic to play three games in five days on the pitch at this time of year.

"At the end of the day, we are the landlords and that gives us the right to cancel games.

"It was taken in the best interests of Bury Football Club and, hopefully, in the best interests of FC United. We have good relations with FC United and I sincerely hope this hasn't soured them."