Date: 24th January 2006 at 6:48pm
Written by:

The Great Ticket Fiasco has caused more than a lovers tiff between the club and the fans. Here, the Chief Editor,JD, makes his feelings known on this most ridiculous situation.

JD’s Rant

I’m not going to write an article that sets out the requirements of what a proper Orient fan is. I have no arguments with so called ‘glory hunter’ supporters or Spurs fans that have nothing better to do this Saturday. After all, the tickets were there and they bought them fair and square. Yet, the case in point is that they should never have been allowed to purchase the tickets. The actions, or lack of action of Orient have left a bad taste in the mouth as hundreds of loyal fans are set to miss out on another fabulous day out.

At Wrexham on Saturday where 198 of us travelled to profess our loyalty to the club we love so much, there was an ironic moment which captured the current situation almost perfectly. The chant of ‘Stand up if you’re in the cup’ was sung and all those behind the goal stood to sing. This was followed by an ironic chant of ‘Stand up if you’ve got a ticket’. Around 60% of the O’s fans sat down. Whether this is accurate or not I am not so sure, but it has definitely soured relations between the club and those that have been so loyal this season.

I am still trying to fathom as to how Orient could have got it so very wrong. Having sold 6,000 tickets against Fulham, did they not think that demand would go up after such a large success? After all, success breeds success, and all those fairweather fans that do tend to turn up for these games, made sure that they weren’t going to miss out this time. Surely, there must be some sort of loyalty scheme for O’s fans. It is ridiculous to think that there are fans that have travelled to Carlisle and Wrexham et al and yet will not be at the Valley.

Statement Not Enough

The statement that issued an apology is not enough, and in all honesty the Great Ticket Fiasco is not something that can be fixed. It seems almost a poor joke that tickets for Northampton are now being sold according to priority. Even if the club succeed in getting a live beam back to Brisbane Road, it is not the same, merely a poor substitute for Orient’s inadequacy. The F.A. are under no obligation to accomodate a live beam back, because after all, it is Orient’s incompetence that has led to this situation.

A Kick In The Teeth

I am fortunate enough to have a ticket, although I was almost one of those that missed out. I can only imagine the pain that some O’s fans are going through at the moment. It seems almost farcical that the club has treated the fans like this when they are the life and soul of the club. Orient have let their fans down in a major way, and this mistake should never be repeated. It is a huge kick in the teeth for those that have travelled week in week out to watch the O’s only to watch in horror as Orient give away THEIR tickets to so called ‘fair weather’ fans.

Where To Now?

A lot of loyal fans have been left extremely aggrieved and feeling particularly bitter by the whole fiasco. Orient have been used to incompetence on the pitch in recent years, but as soon as we start to get it right on the pitch, the administrative side goes haywire. What was supposed to be another marvellous day out for the club has been tarnished by Orient’s lack of loyalty and lack of thought to their loyal supporters.

As for the game

It should be a wonderful day out for all of those that have tickets in the Orient sections. It’s a real shame that some of those that have devoted their lives to following the club are missing out. It’s cynical to think of it, but clubs rarely care about the fans and as long as they get their money they are quite happy. Unfortunately, this seems another one of those quite untasteful scenarios.

Vital Football At The Valley

www.orient.vitalfootball.co.uk will bring you all the news and latest before and after the game at the Valley on Saturday. We’ll be running a couple of special articles in addition to the pre-match analysis and the match reports. JD will be at the game on Saturday and will bring you all the latest news from the Valley. Let’s hope it’s another cup giantkilling experience!