A consortium of concerned supporters has called on the current executive of Athlone Town AFC to step down and has stated its willingness to assume the running of the club.
A statement released by the Athlone Town Consortium earlier this week said events during the last 12 months have compromised the good name of the club within the football fraternity.
Among the reasons listed by the group are: the club’s failure to fulfill its fixture against Waterford Utd on June 3, 2016; the departure of the manager and a majority of the playing staff mid-season; the decision by the FAI to initiate an independent report into the club; the club becoming involved in a dispute with Athlone Town Stadium Co Ltd; and the postponement of the home fixture against Shelbourne on March 11, 2016, due to floodlight failure.
Turning to the current season, the statement adds the following reasons: uncertainty surrounding the identity of the manager early in the season; the appointment of a new manager after the club had won its first two games; the listing of numerous managers on team sheets in the first 10 SSE Airtricity League games; floodlight failure delaying the kick-off of the club’s first home league game.
The consortium also says that the executive failed to accept registered post from a group of members requesting an EGM on two occasions, as well as failing to provide a financial statement of affairs to the consortium as agreed by the club at a public meeting called by the club’s executive in May 2016.
On November 29, 2016, the club held a special general meeting which it declared, in an official notice to local press, was to “discuss the independent report of Mr Peter McLoone, and its findings of the report”.
However, this meeting then proceeded to discuss a vote of confidence/no confidence in the executive, something the consortium says was a breach of the club’s rules.
“At no stage were members advised that a vote of no confidence was to be taken at this meeting,” the statement reads.
In conclusion, the statement says that the decision by the FAI to launch an investigation into irregular betting patterns on international markets has led them to once again call for the resignation of the current executive.