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Leeds fan in peace - a few questions about everyone's favourite businessman, Ken Bates


LS8_whites

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I know there's a bit of animosity between our two clubs but I thought I'd come on here in peace as I'm curious about a few things. As you might know, Ken Bates is destroying our club. He's already sacked Grayson for our squad underperforming despite him not giving him enough money to spend (9 million, peanuts) and seeing two of our best players in Howson and Gradel sold. In short, he's a bit of a d**khead.

I know he nearly led Chelsea into "doing a Leeds" before the Russian fella stepped in but to be honest I'm a bit ignorant when it comes to the politics of Chelsea FC (pre-Abramovich). So I was wondering:

1) Was there hatred for him amongst your fans like there is for us?

2) How much did he spend on Chelsea Village in comparison to what he gave your manager to spend in the transfer market?

3) If your fans were unhappy with him being at the helm, did you try to do anything about it? Such as protests etc.

I could probably Google all this but I'm interested in hearing from Chelsea fans themselves. Cheers for any answers!

PS - Unlucky about Sunday, you were cheated out of 3 points by those red c**ts.

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1) Was there hatred for him amongst your fans like there is for us?

Some hated him, for most it was a permanent seething mistrust, he didn't like us and we didn't like him, I never believed a word he said about anything.

2) How much did he spend on Chelsea Village in comparison to what he gave your manager to spend in the transfer market?

Don't know because he was never exactly forthcoming about what money was spent where. In the nineties you were as likely to read about Chelsea on the financial pages as the sports, all kinds of alleged offshore companies holding tranches of shares in the club which may or may not have been owned by Ken or some associates or whatever, it was a dark time.

3) If your fans were unhappy with him being at the helm, did you try to do anything about it? Such as protests etc.

He loves a fight, if you protest he'll dig his heels in and take you on, he milks the loyalty of the supporters,

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1) Was there hatred for him amongst your fans like there is for us?

Not in the same way as you lot i don't think. He was always on dodgy ground coming from us to you in reality?

2) How much did he spend on Chelsea Village in comparison to what he gave your manager to spend in the transfer market?

We don't know, although as fans you always want more money spent on players.

3) If your fans were unhappy with him being at the helm, did you try to do anything about it? Such as protests etc.

Same as Q1 really, at the time the owner was the owner and that was that really.

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He never sought popularity and didn't seem to care what people thought of him. He was ruthless and treated a lot of people like dirt.

He knew he could make big bucks out of Chelsea, and fought for years to make sure he did. Saving the Bridge was a massive achievement for which he deserves huge credit.

Building the hotels/ leisure complex was a miscalculation. At the time, it looked like a way of generating money for the club, but it has failed to do so, and they are now a serious barrier to our development, as they reduced the capacity of the Shed End and are preventing redevelopment and bigger match-day revenue. As has been said, it's not known how much was invested in 'Chelsea Village', but it was all done by massive borrowing that - alongside big investment in players under Hoddle, Gullit and Vialli - left us in a perilous state just before Abramovich took over. I don't buy the 'days from bankruptcy' stories, as we had just qualified for the CL and could have refinanced the debt, but we could have seen a few top players like JT and Lamps leave. As it was, we were so hard up we didn't even make Zola an offer to stay another season (until RA offered him a deal, but it was too late as he'd given his word to Cagliari).

Right now, I reckon he loves the fact he owns one of the apartments behind the Shed which are holding us back.

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I know there's a bit of animosity between our two clubs but I thought I'd come on here in peace as I'm curious about a few things. As you might know, Ken Bates is destroying our club. He's already sacked Grayson for our squad underperforming despite him not giving him enough money to spend (9 million, peanuts) and seeing two of our best players in Howson and Gradel sold. In short, he's a bit of a d**khead.

I know he nearly led Chelsea into "doing a Leeds" before the Russian fella stepped in but to be honest I'm a bit ignorant when it comes to the politics of Chelsea FC (pre-Abramovich). So I was wondering:

1) Was there hatred for him amongst your fans like there is for us?

2) How much did he spend on Chelsea Village in comparison to what he gave your manager to spend in the transfer market?

3) If your fans were unhappy with him being at the helm, did you try to do anything about it? Such as protests etc.

I could probably Google all this but I'm interested in hearing from Chelsea fans themselves. Cheers for any answers!

PS - Unlucky about Sunday, you were cheated out of 3 points by those red c**ts.

Welcome to the site. I know there is quite a bit of rivalry between our 2 teams but I've actually got quite a lot of mates who support Leeds.

I agree with a lot of the answers on here. He was one of those characters people either loved or hated. In fact many of us both loved and hated at the same time ;).

On the plus side he won the battle with Marler estates to save the ground from redevelopment and possibly threaten the future of the club.

However in my opinion he often tries to take too much credit for turning around the club. We were a midtable Premier League team at best before Matthew Harding came on to the scene. It was his investment and vision that helped to bring in some of the initial big European names like Gullit and Vialli. That in turn gave us our first trophies in decades and raised our profile in Europe. Even during that time Bates was happy to regularly hire and fire managers, and for the last couple of years pre-Roman we were barely able to make any new signings. It was really only Ranieri's ability to spot young talent and work with some of the younger squad players that helped us to make it into the Champions League before Roman took over.

I also think he treated many fans with contempt at times. His electric fence being one of most notable examples. In fact I know somebody who was once given an earful by him for turning up in the Director's box without a suit. Fair enough but he basically told him that he belonged in the shed with the animals. That is how he apparently viewed most of us fans!

After saying all that I will say that his program notes and interviews were often entertaining. There was rarely a dull moment when he was around.

I'm sure he will refuse to back down if Leeds fans protest. In fact he will probably enjoy being defiant.

Are there any rich Leeds fans ready to challenge him?

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I would say 9 mill on championship players is a fair wedge and your table position reflects that.

Silly move sacking grayson, But blaming it on money spent in some circumstances is just a cop out!

Bates is just a typical business oldboy, These things are just novelty games and money spinners in his eyes which he then seeks to gain maximum profit from hence the 'restricted' spending.

Why does he even own Leeds? Bargain bin acquisition to make some profit from?..Probably!

Looking about....That's modern football!...

Hope never to see Leeds in the PL again!....Carry on Bates...Carry on! ^_^

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Legend. He saved our club at least twice, it took a long time but when he felt the time was right he finally invested a lot on the playing side, when he bought Middle in was the start.

I was lucky enough to meet him and one thing that really stood out was that he couldn't stand fools, holigans fell into that category and it was them that he didn't like, he grew to love Chelsea fans as a group.

We had a poll on here a while ago about who is the most important person in oh history and many voted for Bates.

I don't know much about what's gone on at leeds but he doesn't like to lose and he'll never get you in the state Risdale did.

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A lot of people think that the Chelsea village is what stopped us from developing the ground to a bigger size, my understanding is that the local council put the kybosh on it due to safety issues (too many people leaving the ground in one go and only being able to exit on to Fulham Road, and its still a barrier to redeveloping the Bridge now) So the hotel etc was a compromise but I don't really think he had much of a choice.

He instigated the CPO which I think was a good thing it showed a lot of foresight.

He saved us from going under and although he was a grumpy old git, he always fought our corner (his programme notes could be legendary at times)

He mellowed a bit towards the fans as the years went on and hooliginism was eradicated from the ground, but he could be a loose cannon and anyone who thinks the press only started hating us when Abramovich took over should go back and revist some of Bates spats with various journalists..

In short I look back on old Captain Birdseye fondly but mad_mac sums it up best...

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I didnt agree with everything Bates said or done, but the fact of the matter is Chelsea FC wouldnt exist now without him.

He stepped in & bought us when no one else would, when he took over we were in dire straits, even our club lottery lost us money it was so bad!

To be fair to him he stuck by John Neal when we just survived avoiding divsion 3, the following year with a few un-known players bought for very little money we went up(beating Leeds 5.0 along the way :wink: ) as champions in 84.

We just missed out on Europe two seasons running, by now John Neal's health had detirated so he was moved upstairs, John Hollins came in as boss & with his no 2 being a bullyboy strict twat called Ernie Walley, we ended up relegated in 88.

Straight back up as champions again clinching promotion by beating Leeds again :wink: in 89.

Few good cup runs in the early 90s with us reaching the final in 94 & getting in to Europe helped pave the way for the likes of Gullit & Hughes ect to sign for us.

He bought in the CPO share offer which meant us fans would never be shat on again like we were under the Mears family(a family with ties to Chelsea FC going back to when we were born in 1905, no outside company could purchase Stmford Bridge without us fans sayso, we're still fighting our corner now but thats a different story.

Dont believe the hype about Mathew Harding, while i had a lot of time for him, he was first & foremost another business man & wanted a profit first, he LENT Chelsea money to build the north stand while being worth something like £160m yet Bates gets slated for making money.

Overall he was brilliant for Chelsea while pissing plenty of people off along the way including us fans, but without him we wouldnt have a ground or exist now.

Just before Roman came in we wouldnt have gone bust as we had assets worth £100m so another media hype.

Maybe you Leeds fans should give him a break eh, after all you reached a play off final not long after he took you over, if you'd played better on the day you may have got promotion & who knows where you'd be now under Bates, just think if he hadnt have stepped in when he did you could be another Pompey now.

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LS8 I am one of those Chelsea fans of an age who supported the club before, during, and after the Bates era. IMO without Ken Bates there would, in all probability, be no Chelsea Football Club. The long, long fight with the developers and the banks is one that we would have lost with anyone else but Ken in control. Make no mistake, for all his perceived character flaws, it was his stubborness, determination, guile and sheer bloodymindedness that saved our club.

Roll forward to more happier times, and on the day that we played our first ever Champions League game at the Bridge against AC Milan I met Ken and had a chance to speak with. I spoke briefly about the "Save The Bridge" campaign and told him that I never believed I would see the day when we would be playing the top teams in the world at Chelsea, and that the fact that we were was mostly down to him. He was very humble and said that he didn't it alone and that he was immensely proud of where the club was now.

There is a statue of Peter Osgood outside the main entrance at Stamford Bridge. There should be one of Ken Bates.

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I agree with Just whole heartedly. As I have stated previously Bates's takeover was obviously very different takeover from Roman's - this was one that wouldn't turn the club round by the power of the wallet, this was one that would do it through sheer bloody determination, will and no end of sweat and toil. To me, Bates, for all his other negative foibles, remains the man who more than any other in recent(ish) history ensure Ordnance Survey had to keep a spot for us on the map.

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I agree with Just whole heartedly. As I have stated previously Bates's takeover was obviously very different takeover from Roman's - this was one that wouldn't turn the club round by the power of the wallet, this was one that would do it through sheer bloody determination, will and no end of sweat and toil. To me, Bates, for all his other negative foibles, remains the man who more than any other in recent(ish) history ensure Ordnance Survey had to keep a spot for us on the map.

I couldn't agree more. He was at times a loathsome guy, but he had the Club at heart, saving it, developing it and making EVERYTHING that has happened since possible.

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