FSF meeting with Platini a step in the right direction

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Members of the FSF and 14 other supporters’ groups from across Europe met with Uefa president Michel Platini and general secretary David Taylor in Nyon, Switzerland, this weekend to discuss the future of the game and look at how supporter issues were being addressed.

The establishment of a Europe-wide football fans network was high on the agenda and a report by Supporters Direct was presented which looks at the feasibility of this.

Discussions around Uefa’s disciplinary bodies, safety, security, and fan behaviour also took place while key elements to Uefa’s activities in 2009, such as football finance and protection of young players were outlined.

“This has been a positive few days and we’re very pleased that Uefa have acknowledged the importance of fan representation. In particular it’s been interesting to see that they share a similar outlook when it comes to governance, and specific issues such curbing irresponsible spending on wages or transfers,” said Malcolm Clarke, chair of the FSF.

Uefa general secretary David Taylor said: “In discussions, we became aware that while we now have various representative groups within football, there was no group for supporters' representatives. We felt that this was a situation that we should be addressing

“We want to involve the fans – we are an international governing body with wide interests in the world of football, and there is a natural alliance between Uefa and fans in many areas affecting the game.”

He added: “Football without the fans is nothing.”

Nine representatives from the inaugural European Football Fans' Congress – arranged last summer by Football Supporters’ International (FSI) and partly financed by Uefa – were also in attendance. To learn more about the FSI network click here.