It’s already been stressed elsewhere what a pleasure last night’s Trust-arranged Q&A with Thomas Sandgaard proved to be. Amen to that, thanks to TS and the Trust. The transcript’s already been published by the Trust, so people not able to listen in can read for themselves what was said, but just as important as the words were the tone, the openness, the evident willingness to listen, and the positivity. The contrast with what has gone before, at least since early 2014 (let’s be fair, the spivs did make some effort to communicate before it all fell apart for them, Duchatelet/Miere saw contact with the fans as a necessary evil, perhaps an opportunity to tell fans what Roland wanted but limit any fans’ input to discussions over the price of Bovril), could not have been starker.
Everyone will have their favourite moment/answer. Mine, which harks back to a familiar theme, is when TS was asked about his motivation for getting involved with Charlton as, it was jokingly suggested, it can’t be for the good his health. On reflection TS pointed out that in actual fact it probably is good for his health as he is enjoying himself. Spot on. I always found it sad that Duchatelet, by never being remotely interested in Charlton or football in general, or trying to unearth the reasons behind the appeal (he already knew everything of course), never seemed to get any pleasure from owning football clubs. To be fair, we never saw him with a smile on his face over anything, but it did make you wonder why he opted to get involved with football (other than as a sterile social experiment having failed in politics, or to try to prove a point that he knew how to make money from football while others couldn’t).
For now, TS is going to have to take our word for it that he has made very many Addicks, myself included, very happy. No doubt there will be bumps along the way, perhaps it will take us a year or two longer than we expect to get into the European competitions, but if the attitudes stays the same the guy can expect the continued full backing of the fans.
TS was asked basically what in return we could do to help. Fill out The Valley when we can and bring in friends and family, as well as help develop supporter networks. We may not be able yet to do the former, but we can start with some groundwork on the latter, by spreading the word that it’s going to be fun for all of us and why not come on board for the ride. Our club has been in the news for years for less than positive reasons, we can help counter the impression left and encourage others to return and new Addicks to be initiated.