By Tony Attwood
Arsenal Independent Supporters Association (AISA) has announced that at its AGM the guest speaker will be Alex Phillips, UEFA’s head of the Executive Office.
I’ll give the detail of what the Executive Office is, in a moment, but without even going into that, it is a great coup for AISA to get Alex Phillips to the meeting. He is a man right at the heart of the sort of UEFA issues we debate – most notably the financial doping regulations.
For myself (and writing here personally, not in my capacity as a committee member of AISA) I am really hoping to be able to ask a pertinent question or two about just how likely it is that financial transgressors such as Manchester City are going to be debarred from Europe.
If you are not a member of AISA, you really ought to be – and details are at the end of this piece. The AGM is obviously open to members only.
Anyway, back to the meeting. The AISA AGM usually does have a speaker of significance to talk to the assembled throng, (last year Arsenal director gave a really interesting talk which revealed quite a few hidden truths about the players and their relationship with the club) and I am really anticipating this could be one of the best yet.
So here’s the run down on UEFA and where Alex Phillips fits in.
The UEFA Congress, the UEFA Executive Committee and the UEFA Executive Office form the hub of UEFA’s activities at the highest level. It is at these levels that key sporting and political decisions of UEFA are taken.
The Congress is Europe’s football parliament, and the Executive Committee has the power to make decisions on all matters which do not fall within the jurisdiction of the Congress or any other organ. The Executive Committee also manages UEFA as an overall organisation.
The Executive Office of which Alex Phillips is the head provides the support to the UEFA president, Michel Platini, and general secretary, Gianni Infantino.
Moving back to AISA – the prime work of AISA (and this is my summary, not an official line) is to represent the feelings and views of fans to the club and to work to support Arsenal on and off the field. Put another way, it runs campaigns and supports the team.
This is a multifaceted approach and covers everything from policing to the food and drink in the stadium, and many of these involve on-going discussions and debates. The meetings and discussions often don’t make the headlines but do allow fans to have their views made known to the club, and ensures that change happens.
Two projects that I am involved in are “Arsenal History” which among other things is campaigning to have more art (following the development of the Arsenal Wall, the canons and the ARSENAL stones on the south bridge) outside the ground. We’re also uncovering all the errors in the traditional telling of Arsenal’s history (see www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk) and hoping to publish a book in conjunction with Arsenal on the Woolwich Arsenal story.
I’m also involved in the “Voice of Arsenal” project through which members of AISA are asked to put forward their own personal concerns to the club. I’m just in the process of putting two issues that have been raised about ticketing, to the chief executive of the club, and we’re hoping that we will be able to influence the club’s thinking on this point. Members will be getting details of this at the AGM and shortly on the web site.
- Making the Arsenal: the only book about Arsenal without Australians in it
- Arsenal History: currently telling the stories of all XI players who played in our first league game.
- Untold Arsenal on Facebook here
- Untold Arsenal Index: silly stuff, serious stuff, and stuff
- Arsenal Worldwide: supporting Arsenal from outside the UK
- Arsenal v Tottenham update, team news and appalling, flagrant media bias
- Arsenal have benefitted by the world cup break: allegedly.
- Arsenal and Tottenham: which has had the easier ride so far this season?
- Arsenal v Tottenham: not exactly a battle of equals.
- Death by 300,000 passes: how the Arsenal transformation started 2 seasons ago.