Fox Sports broadcaster Simon Hill took aim at Football Federation Australia (FFA) CEO David Gallop on Adelaide radio following Tuesday’s press conference.
“Some people described this as David Gallop’s grand final in terms of press conferences. He had to deliver today, he had to stand up for a game that’s been under attack from all quarters over the last seven to 10 days,” a fired-up Hill said.
Instead, Gallop defended the FFA’s banning and appeals process for fans, but admitted the system needed fixing.
Hill added: “What he also didn’t do, he didn’t admit there needed to be a fair process when it comes to stadium bans, he actually put the burden of proof again back on the supporters.”
The much-anticipated response fell flat, as Gallop failed to address many key issues that have bubbled to the surface since Rebecca Wilson’s blast in the Sunday Telegraph at the 198 fans on the banned list a fortnight ago.
Club supporter groups have now planned boycots of this week’s round of A-League matches.
The Western Sydney Wanderers main supporters group, the Red and Black Bloc (RBB), confirmed its intentions on social media overnight.
“The RBB will be boycotting the game this Saturday vs Brisbane at home in its entirety, and encourage the rest of the fans to do so,” the statement read.
To many, including Hill, not backing the code’s fans was inexcusable.
“Our leaders didn’t have the guts to stand up in public and defend our sport against this type of trash, it’s disgusting,” he said.
“The way the FFA has handled it, in its totality, is just appalling.”
The experienced commentator also told an example of how football cops the wrong end of the stick at times, while other sports fly under the radar.
Citing a cricket match between Australia and England at the MCG back in 2007, Hill said: “On one particular day there were 196 evictions in the crowd, in one day. The police on the bottom of the press release, praised the crowd behaviour.
“You tell me, what’s happened to this 196 people? Those 196 people misbehaved to the extent where they were thrown out of the sporting stadium.”
“Maybe the narrative in public through the media is, it’s just the boys having a few too many beers and it got a bit rowdy. Where is with football, that’s a riot mate.”2 comments