Citizens Supporters Club brands FC Edinburgh's lack of consultation over name change 'disgusting'

The Citizens Supporters Club are disgusted with FC Edinburgh's decision not to consult supporters over the controversial name change.

By Neil McGlade
Monday, 20th June 2022, 5:36 pm

The League One newcomers announced last week that they would no longer operate as Edinburgh City Football Club due to potential legal implications after it emerged they do not own the naming rights.

With Edinburgh City social club holding all the cards to the name and unwilling to release for use, the club's board of directors believe they were left with little choice.

However, supporters are furious they were not consulted over the rebranding despite chairman Jim Brown insisting there was some dialogue with a couple of the fans’ group. A new club crest has also been unveiled that has come under the microscope too.

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The Citizens Supporters Group is furious that League One Edinburgh City have been renamed FC Edinburgh. Photo by Mark Scates / SNS.

The statement read: "There has been a great degree of upheaval and upset over the last few days. Emotions have been running high. The SC Committee would like to state our severe unhappiness and disgust at the club's board, and owner, with regards to the club's name change. We are pragmatic enough to appreciate the legal issues. We understand the difficulties with the social club as we've had our own problems with them since the move to Lochend despite our best efforts.

"What we cannot accept is the club, yet again, failing to consult fans on a major change. This is quite frankly completely unacceptable and hurtful, especially as we've had an excellent working relationship over many years.

"It was said there was a need for a quick turnaround due to various reasons. This is a whitewash. The name FC Edinburgh first appeared in a sponsorship brochure a few years ago. This was also discussed, as the chairman mentioned in the Q&A, with two members of the committee.

"The club were told at that point that fans needed to be consulted if the club were considering a name change. This could have been a very simple soft marketing exercise one which the SC Committee could have undertaken on behalf of the club. Why did this not happen only the club knows.

"This also would have avoided the negativity and bewilderment to the change as fans would have been prepared. We appreciate not everyone would have been happy with the name chosen but we are fairly confident from discussions and online comments that this could have been avoided by doing one simple thing - asking the fans. The club only have themselves to blame for the negative comments, many of which we wholeheartedly agree with.

"There are other concerns we have, namely the badge and the lack of an early bird/discount for early season ticket renewal. This is the second year in a row this has happened, firstly while finances were squeezed in the middle of the pandemic and now with the cost-of-living crisis.

"While a free strip is a wonderful gesture under current economic conditions, it would have been perhaps better to give the fans a choice - shirt or discount. As a result, many have intimated that they no longer feel valued as fans and that they are being treated as a customer. Some are walking away completely.”

Edinburgh Leisure CEO June Peebles is expected to announce tomorrow if the redeveloped Meadowbank can open on July 11.