A Question Of Trust – Or Is It?

With the background of Chelsea’s offer to CPO, it seems to me that there are a lot of questions about whether or not we trust Ron Gourlay, Buck et al, to do the right thing.

Most of us seem to trust Roman quite a bit (I count myself amongst those) but aren’t sure about the others. Mr Buck wants our trust – he wants us to trust the Board to do the right thing for the club – but he does not appear to want to work for it.

I am also concerned that the Board have decided to pursue this route at a time when Roman may have his attention diverted by the well-publicised court case…or am I being overly cynical? Alternatively, is this a clever piece of media manipulation the club trusts will take the limelight from said court case?

Do we trust the Board not to work behind Roman’s back? If this is the case, do we trust that Roman is savvy enough to be aware of it? If he is fully supportive of this, is our trust in Roman misplaced?

But the fact is, all of that is completely and totally irrelevant. This is not a question of trust. Nor is this about whether or not we move away from the Bridge. This is ultimately a question of good business sense.

No business can be expected to divest itself of its prime business stake, its bargaining power and its whole intrinsic value as Chelsea suggest CPO should do. To suggest that it does so, with no concrete idea of what the other party has in mind is risible. Laughable. Derisory …. quickly, get out the thesaurus, is there any word worse than derisory?

Okay, so the CPO are not a business in the normal sense of the word, but they sure as hell have performed a security function and to a great extent a good-governance function for the club in the past and continue to perform that now. The only difference with CPO now as opposed to five or ten years ago is that their function may – just may – be vital once more in safeguarding the future of the club.

I have tried to be impartial on this and tried very hard it to see it from the club’s point of view. But I can’t. Or rather I cannot see what the club hopes to achieve by saying, in effect; Let’s do a deal – you give us the rights to the real estate and the name and we will – actually we won’t give you anything. Yes, of course if you want promises we will promise you anything that is not supportable in law. But don’t be fooled, in reality, in law, we are giving you nothing…

Surely if such a proposition were mooted across a Boardroom table, the other party would assume it was either a joke or simply walk out at the insult. Either scenario begs the question as to why we – and perhaps more importantly, Roman – should trust what Chelsea’s Board say.

I am not a Chelsea Pitch Owner (nor am I totally opposed to leaving The Bridge), so I say this with the utmost respect to all concerned and knowing that this should have no impact on whatever decision anyone makes. Ultimately it is up to each individual to behave as he or she sees in the best interests of the club.

Now is the time the CPO must stand together though, even if it is against the wishes of their own “leadership”. No backing down until the proposals that are being made are concrete and transparent. Only when the Board can put something on the table that is understandable, clear, unambiguous and to the point, then the CPO can make an informed judgement.

Until then they should not even enter into dialogue with the club other than to say we appreciate your ideas but until concrete proposals are put forward we cannot discuss this now or in the future.

One last point that I dont think anyone apart from myself can answer: why should I continue to fervently support a club who have a Board that behave as cynically, or if not cynically then stupidly, as this?

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