Northampton Town Supporters’ Trust has given its full support to the #WeWantAnswers campaign launched by fans this week on social media.
Fans have been posting messages on Facebook and Twitter calling for Cobblers chairman David Cardoza to answer supporters’ questions over the sale of the club to an Indian consortium and the future development of the stadium.
Last night, Mr Cardoza told fans he was not in a position to answer those questions due to on-going discussions with the potential new owners and said the deal was “not far away from being completed”.
However, the supporters’ trust has given its backing to calls by fans who they say are asking fair and reasonable questions.
In a statement released on its website this morning, the trust says it understood concerns that the protest came at a time of the negotiations but believed some of the issues raised by fans do not directly affect the takeover talks.
“It is our intention therefore to continue to back the #WeWantAnswers campaign despite the latest statement from David Cardoza this afternoon.
“Ahead of the Oxford United match at Sixfields on Saturday, fans will hold up ‘question mark’ signs with the #WeWantAnswers slogan emblazoned on them – signifying the wish to see questions answered by the chairman.
“We are aware that the chairman feels it difficult to answer questions during the due diligence process of the takeover. However the Trust feels that a number of the questions it posed in its previous statement can be answered without affecting this process.
“The lack of updates and answers from the chairman has created a culture where rumours begin to spread. We feel that some of these rumours could also be addressed by the chairman, which would ease tensions if they were proved to be false,” the statement added.
The elected representative for the supporters’ trust, Andy Clarke, said: “This is not a campaign against the team, manager or any other officials at the club. It’s directed at the chairman’s lack of letting people know answers to reasonable questions.
“I acknowledge that some questions are legally complex and are not easily answered at this stage.
“We want to make sure that the team, manager and staff at the club don’t feel the heat as a result of the campaign.
“The only person who has knowledge of the takeover and can give reassurance at this current time is the chairman himself.
“The chairman is doing a deal with a big potential owner, so it’s not unnatural that negotiations prove to be difficult and commercially sensitive.
“You can’t give everyone chapter and verse about what is going on. But that is not the issue for us. It’s the fact that the chairman is not acknowledging that all the supporters, the team, Chris Wilder and the club staff need some reassurance.
“In my view, the chairman could settle the ship if he were to answer as many of the fans’ questions as possible.”
James Averill, the press officer for the trust, added: “ I know that some fans will be questioning the timing of our statement.
“We have to constantly gauge the views of all fans, and it can be difficult to find the tipping point where we feel fans feel the next step needs to be taken.
“We felt that this point was finally reached on Sunday after receiving a number of comments from supporters.
“Since then we have been in serious discussion about the next steps of the Trust, and felt that backing this campaign – which was being supported by an increasing number of supporters – was the right thing to do.
“We know some supporters would wish that we had acted sooner, and we know there are also supporters who wished for us to wait longer to make our next move.
“Now however we want to see a united front from all supporters in getting behind this campaign, but importantly also getting behind the players on Saturday as well.”
The club statement said that more details of the logistics of the campaign on Saturday would be released in the lead up to the game.
In a statement released last night, Mr Cardoza said: “I completely understand the frustration of the supporters, and as soon as I can update them, I will.
“It is hard for me to comment while due diligence is taking place, but that process is almost at an end and we will know more very shortly.
“In the update on August 14 I said it would take around four weeks and we are still within that period.
“Whether it takes a little longer or hits that target remains to be seen but we aren’t far away from that being completed.
“The deal covers all the outstanding issues regarding the stadium redevelopment and the potential new owners will announce their future plans very shortly.
“I understand the frustration, I appreciate the patience and as soon as I can update supporters in more detail, I will.”
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