When Newco signed up for the Ange Homecoming Tour, I’m pretty sure they didn’t know that is how it would be billed. It also seems clear they didn’t know they agreed to participate for less than half the sum that Celtic were able to attract.
These are interesting times in Newco finances, they are not in a position to be fussy about a sizeable fee (we are not completely out of the financial woods either). Football club directors never want to make unpopular decisions, but they know sometimes their salary requires them to put priorities before popularity. That’s what this is. It is then the job of the PR department to sensitively commuicate unpopular decisions to fans. Can you imagine having this job at a major club? It takes skill and guile, and even then, the best you can hope for is to be marginally disliked.
The Newco board need to pay the wages, so were obliged to take the money and attempt to sell the decision to their fans. I could say the same about Celtic’s decision, albeit this fee is not dependent on Newco being in attendance (they may yet pull out).
That the Newco board were not aware of the “Ange Homecoming Tour” billing, or that they were the poor relations when it came to payment, is an opportunity for anyone wanting to campaign against them. Fans and fan groups didn’t want the game, but there’s a touch of humiliation in how business was conducted. This led to the exchanges between club and shareholder group yesterday, “propaganda”, was the cry!
I’ve seen under the bonnet of the Celtic commercial operation. In all honesty, I don’t fancy coming up against them. It is an experienced department that can assess the value of opportunities like this from instinct. Newco are still new in a corporate sense. If they retain their current commercial crop, they will learn from this and be less exposed in future, but 10 years of innovative corporate leadership has not cultivated much growth.
None of this puts the ball in the net, but it goes a long way towards what eventually happens on the field.