|Derby Down Under - Cowardice|
Fri 07th Sep 2007 17:52 by Daniel J Sewart
Last week my article was full of optimism and belief that Derby County could begin to get their shaky start to the season back on the rails.
After the drubbing at Anfield any fan could be excused for their enthusiasm taking a battering but that is no excuse for the hate mail sent to the club's Chairman Peter Gadsby. There is only one word for that kind of action… cowardice!
I was disgusted to read reports that Mr. Gadsby was the subject of abusive emails from Derby fans after the Liverpool defeat. As one of a group that saved the club from bankruptcy and possible extinction, brought a much sought after manager to the club, enabled the Rams to be promoted after only one season in charge and one of a group who put their necks and bank accounts on the line to bring Premiership football and a whole lot more (did I mention marketing, strategy and economic management) back to Pride Park. After all this he receives hate letters after a heavy defeat from a team that I believe will go on to win the league. A disgrace!
If any of the offenders are reading this column then I hope the ludicrous notion that led them to such a low and undeserved act has now been re-thought and an apology has been drafted and sent. Only a coward would believe that any good could come of sending a malicious email attacking a person who has shown the courage that Peter Gadsby has.
I could describe it as foolish, ridiculous or even pathetic but that would be letting the offenders off too lightly.
I was ashamed to hear that fans booed players off the field a few weeks back and am even more so with this latest incident. I know it is a minority and from a group of fans that I am sure most Rams fans would prefer supported another club. I for one was jubilant during disaster when during the TV coverage of the game I could hear the Derby fans still singing at 6-0. They represent the heart and soul of what Derby is and should be about. Sadly this week some others blackened the name of every self respecting Rams follower and I for one not only reject their actions but condemn them.
I may support the Rams from across the globe but even I can see (something these short sighted ones cannot) that Derby County Football Club are still on the way up. The whole operation has much needed stability, a plan for the future and putting together a playing group that will in time compete at this level. Derby are sprinting so fast at the moment they are head and shoulders ahead of where they logically deserve to be but it is only a matter of time before its legs catch up.
Rams players will eventually stop being as star struck as they appear to be and start grinding out their Premiership defense. Time will also see players come in who will keep us in the league or at least give the club every opportunity to do so. It is not ideal that the team is being heavily defeated but it is well documented that the Rams started a month after everyone else in their preparation. Abusing the Manager or board gets the team nowhere and achieves nothing.
Come January much more will be known when the window re-opens and many judgments will be made. Players will come and go as judgments are made on where the team is at. Many deserve the opportunity to prove they belong at this level after they assisted in helping the club scale unimaginable heights but there will be no sentimentality come the new year as Derby attempt to cling to their position in the league.
Peter Gadsby and his fellow shareholders are far too intelligent to take this type of ridicule too seriously but no supporter should ever take them for granted. I am in awe of what they have achieved in such a short period of time and tip my hat to their courage and enthusiasm in striving to once again make Derby County great.
Did those who sent off their letters stop to think what would happen if they ever chose to walk away, who knows where the club would end up? It is unlikely that they would but is there any need to test that theory?
It’s time some Derby fans grew up and realized what the bigger picture is and that the consequences of what is at stake are much bigger than getting demolished by Liverpool, bigger than team selection and transfer activity. No one needs to be blindly optimistic but frankly it is far better than blind stupidity.
C’mon Ewe Rams.
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Daniel J Sewart