Peterborough United chairman corrects 'ridiculous and disingenuous comments' in Posh Trust statment

Peterborough United chairman Darragh MacAnthony has responded quickly to a statement from the Posh Supporters Trust which he claims included ‘ridiculous’ and ‘disingenuous’ comments.
Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony (left) and club director of football Barry Fry. Photo: David Lowndes.Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony (left) and club director of football Barry Fry. Photo: David Lowndes.
Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony (left) and club director of football Barry Fry. Photo: David Lowndes.

The Trust issued a lengthy statement re the club’s financial health and future following a meeting between their chairman Marco Grazialo and MacAnthony.

The Trust believes the construction of a new stadium could be vital to the club’s future, but claimed the venture has stalled because of a falling out between the co-owners. Their statement included: ‘the role of Stewart Thompson and his relationship with the other owners is most likely at the root of the lack of progress.’

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

MacAnthony dismissed this comment as ‘ridiculous’ and revealed another co-owner Dr Jason Neale had ‘a great meeting’ re the proposed new stadium last week.

MacAnthony also described the Trust as ‘disingenuous’ for failing to recognise the impact of Covid on all Posh plans.

MacAntony issued a statement to the PT on Sunday.

It read: ”I met the Trust and other supporters groups due to nonsense being written online and the accusation of lack of communication from ownership. This was dealt with first by reminding them all re a fans forum 3 months ago, bi-weekly meetings with the club CEO, fans invited onto my weekly podcast, Randy (co-owner Stewart Thompson), a meeting with supporters groups less then 6 weeks ago, and email communication always open and responded to if ever emailed. I told them I’m not sure what more the ownership group could do to be more accessible.

“I then told them my goals, seeing as they and so many others are concerned about our debts, is to prudently reduce lots of our debts over the next 18 months, reduce bloated overheads where necessary and get us into a slim healthy state whilst ensuring our 1st team and Academy grows and improves on the pitch.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"And I reiterated there is a plan in place and, like at lots of clubs, these debts accumulated off the back of the Covid period when income was smothered by Covid rules. And all of it was nothing we can’t accomplish in good time.

“I covered his (Trust chairman Marco Graziano) concerns re the bond and how the money was and is being spent. Our bond holders have been delighted with it and the process, so I asked him who is actually asking these questions and why is it a big talking point for him constantly? Marco couldn’t actually tell me how many of his group had part of the bond or who was actually asking these questions.

"Anyhow no problem and all is good. Lots of stuff being planned and will be executed by our CEO. The Bond was and is a big success. All the clients who invested in it are being paid their returns and hopefully another promotion will be another added bonus for all bond holders.

“Not sure why he has made that statement re new stadium stalling because of fractured relationships. Ridiculous comment. I told him the priority for ‘me’ was reducing debts, and improving football side of club, and infrastructure at current ground and stadium for ‘me’ comes after all those things.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Jason (co-owner Dr Jason Neale) had a great meeting last week re new stadium and when time is right he can comment on it and give feedback on what is coming next. It’s still our long term goal.

"For the Trust to mention we talked about it in Feb 2020, which was one month before the whole world went into meltdown with the pandemic hitting and all that came with that afterwards, and the lingering effects from it, and make out that serious progress should have been made in this timeline is disingenuous in my opinion. The mitigating factors involved locally and worldwide with the current economic climate isn’t even taken into account with them nor many other factors. Posh ownership has not swayed re wanting to have a new stadium for the football club and the community.

“I respect the Trust and the role they play as I do any supporters groups for our club and in the industry. All clubs should see them as allies and have constant communication with them. I felt it was an excellent meeting until I read the statement Marco sent me by email prior to the PT reaching out over it.

"I, as always, am doing my best for the football club I have run for over 17 years. For some it is never good enough and for some they see low moments as an opportunity to point fingers, overly criticise certain things and put the boot in which thinks gives them a chance to elevate their own agenda.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"I don’t have any other agenda bar making Peterborough United a self-sustainable successful Championship club with a thriving Category 2 Academy that makes our community proud.

"I am not perfect, nor never will be, but my heart beats blue and that won’t ever change. Actions speak louder than words so no more talking and time for actions to make lots of plans come to fruition in 2023.

“Merry Christmas to all the PT readers, staff and the City of Peterborough.”