Family Focussed Red Cards

A letter to the MKDons Chairman (No reply received)


Dear Mr. Winkleman,

I am a season ticket holder and have been at the majority of games since the move to Milton Keynes. For the last two years I have taken my son (now aged 7) with me to all of the games. One of the things that really impresses me about the club is the family friendly environment that you have created. Unlike many of my friends, I have renewed my season ticket for next year.

I attended the Dons game on Saturday as part of an organised day out by Tattenhoe Youth FC (whose views my letter does not represent). Amongst other things the club was able to use the opportunity to collect their Charter Status award. I gather that one of the cornerstones of that award is creating a club were respect to the referee, to opposition players and coaching staff is key.

With that in mind, I’m sure you have shared my frustration over the past season to see a family friendly club receive so many yellow and red cards. For three games this season I actually stopped attending, not because of results, but because I was so embarrassed at repeatedly having to explain to my son that he should not repeat what he was seeing on the pitch in terms of the constant backchat to referee. This particularly evident from your captain and centre forward but others as well. According to ‘soccernet.espn.go.com’, we are at the bottom of the fairplay table by some 48 points (more than half again as the club above us!)

To cap it all, on Saturday, one of your senior players was sent off for fighting after the half-time whistle. As if that is not enough, I look at the reaction of the caretaker manager on the sports websites today who states that he was “pleased with the Dons’ attitude”. Perhaps you could let me know how he can justify that comment to the 70 or so children that were with us on Saturday – I’m certainly struggling to do so.

Yours etc..