How Do Fan-Owned Football Clubs Work?

How Do Fan-Owned Football Clubs Work?


There are different models of fan ownership in football. Germany employs the 50+1 rule, which prevents private individuals or companies from holding a majority shareholding in a football club. There are minority fan owned models in which Supporters Trust’s work alongside private investors whilst maintaining any influence over the direction and the running at the club and there are entirely supporter owned clubs which often operate as IPS organizations run by a trust and maintained by a Democratic membership. England’s fan-owned clubs are are also often categorized by their specific circumstances. For example, Wycombe Wanderers are categorized as a supporter buyout. This is because supporters bought the existing club rather than forming a new club or reforming a liquidated club. Scarborough Athletic FC are known as a phoenix club, this is because the club was reformed following Scarborough FC’s liquidation. Amongst others there are also protest clubs. FC United of Manchester are an example of this; a new club formed by a group of individuals at odds with the Glazer takeover and the general running of Manchester United. Many of these models operate on a one-member one vote basis and use trusts of nominated and elected members to run the club day-to-day. Most fan-owned clubs also have manifestos dedicated to sustainable operations and community support. FC United of Manchester, as an example, are an industry and providence society or an IPS. In short this is an organization that runs either as a cooperative or for the benefit of the community and in FC United’s case, uses its profits not only for reinvesting in the club but for investing in the community. In an IPS, profits are never withdrawn by shareholders. In summary to be regarded as a fan-owned club, a club must have at least fifty percent plus one of its shares owned by the supporters who pay affordable fees to be members of the Supporters Trust. The trustees are elected by the members to represent the members. Financial sustainability is key and community support is vital.

About the Author: Garret Beatty

96 Comments

  1. Suggestions:

    1. World class players playing well for both Club and Country yet never receive awards and nominations because their club underperformed ? ( Ex: Alexis Sanchez, Diego Costa, Harry Kane,Javier Hernandez)
    2. Tendency to take players from La Liga for TOTY without actually looking at how they performed.
    3. Media overhyping English talent. Players from Spain and Germany and other foreign players dominate the premier league yet English players rarely do well abroad.
    4. Cap on spending and wages like NBA.
    5. Agents ruining football.
    6. Is premier league really the toughest league in the world ? Only 6 teams have won the EPL, whereas 9 teams have won La liga and 12 teams have won Bundesliga. Why aren't English clubs doing well in Europe currently ?

    Great video as usual.

  2. i suggest making a video on blackpool and how they've gone downhill with karl oyston in charge. or bad club management in general

  3. At least here in Brazil, most clubs (And all major clubs) are fan owned, with regular elections for Chairman and board seats.

  4. So what are Real Madrid and Barcelona ? I know they are fan-owned but I don't think they fall under any of the categories you listed

  5. binged all your videos today! I LOVE EHM
    could u do one on why the Chinese are buying everything that walks;)…?

  6. Top quality as usual. Glad you popped up in my suggestions… saying that, I did waste my day off watching all your previous videos. Not gonna lie, I feel like a bit of a football structure expert now.

  7. Brilliant as always! Would love to see a video on Scottish football, the national team or the decline of the club game maybe.

  8. Great video as always. Quality work mate. Can you do a video on how chinese clubs are worsening the already inflated transfer market?

  9. how has it taken me this long to find your channel, man i have not enjoyed videos like this for a long time and look at the time addicted to them, well done man, keep it up.

  10. I think it's ridiculous that you're not getting over 1 million views on every vid let alone the amount of subscribers you have are shocking. Your content is absolutely brilliant and should deserve to be recognized more. 🍻

  11. Maybe seeing a West Ham Ironworks in the near future due to saturation our club. Hopefully not, but the way things are going, real support will be brushed aside for an Arsenal type model

  12. Is that possible for Fan Owned Football clubs (ex FC United of Manchester) to compete in Premier League or Championship?
    For next Video can you explain each tier of English Football (ex requirement to promote, league system, maybe semi-pro footballer salary,etc)…Thanks

  13. I think in Argentina it is mandatory by law for football clubs to be fan owned, and hence all Argentine football clubs are fan owned. Did you miss it, or is there a reason this is not included in the video? Great work otherwise! Awesome videos.

  14. This is how all argentinean clubs are managed, any other way I'd prohibited by national law, so we have no clubs owned by a person, and the few tries to sell a club were dismantled by the fans, look for San Lorenzo's fight against that, every team belongs to their fans

  15. Can you do videos on every single lower league clubs ( their brief history, fans, rivalries etc.) It would be so amazing.

  16. Nice video guys. So much more to say on Fan Ownership and how it benefits the community.

  17. You guys could run a university degree on football and I would love to attend that . I prefer the voice and animation to the live action though 😆

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