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BPAS PODCAST: 17th May '21 Episode 35: Barry Owen


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Barry Owen has been Trust Oldham's Chair and rep on the board. He's been a director at Oldham Athletic until very recently and is someone who fans often have a very strong opinion on. This week, Matt & Andy spent three and a half hours chatting with Barry to get his views on the North Stand, the owners, CEO Karl Evans, the Lee Hughes and Ched Evans affairs and much, much more. We managed to get the episode down to just over two hours and discuss an involvement in Latics that spans 16 years. Is it over now? Here's what Barry has to say...

 

Please help us do the work we do by visiting www.oafcpodcast.co.uk, subscribing and looking in our online shop. We'll be adding more products in the coming weeks and months and would be grateful if you purchased the odd one or two to show your support!

 

Follow the show on Twitter, Instagram & Facebook @oafcpodcast.

 

You can find out more about Push The Boundary by visiting them at www.pushtheboundary.co.uk and following on Twitter @PTB_OAFC

 

Title music is by Manchester DJ and producer Starion find out more at www.redlaserrecords.bandcamp.

 

 

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Very thought provoking. Some very interesting insights, showing the value of the podcasts. Well interviewed, and it's good to ask the hard questions of everybody.

 

You rightly asked how can we work together for the best interests of Oldham Athletic, and that's one of the main reasons I agreed to volunteer to oversee the OASF 1895 Lottery is that I hope it is something that the fans can unite behind, we should have done it years ago. If we can't come together behind a ring-fenced Contingency Fund, then there is no hope for us. I implore everyone to play. We've had a great start.


Play here: https://play.clubforce.com/play_newa.asp?ll_id=2889#Anchor

 

Twitter:

 

 

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Posted (edited)

To be fair I am only half way through so I probably shouldn't comment yet...

 

BUT... I've got a spare 10 mins now and I cannot help myself.

Putting personality issues aside for a moment, which I can't be bothered getting into and aren't really that important in the big picture.

 

What I can't believe is the sheer level of defeatism. Defeatism that has obviously existed, by Barry's own admission, since he first became involved and still does to this day.

 

Put simply, he doesn't accept that the most important job of the trust, or any organisation of fans, was to plan for a different future, to actually imagine a better way and try to make that happen. Or be ready for it. Get experienced people lined up. Build relationships with local or national businesses. Explore new ownership models or fundraising activities. Taking his comments to their logical conclusion, his position is that there is literally no point in doing any of that because it is too hard. 

 

He can't imagine any way the Trust could have been successful. He can't envisage any future without huge benefactors being involved. He can't imagine any way of actually getting those businesses or benefactors involved. He thinks the fans will fail because there aren't enough of us and we aren't organised or skilled or rich enough. And he doesn't appear to see the obvious: that organising us and preparing us and building on our skills and filling in the gaps over the last few years was the job that needed to be done and was the one thing that got totally ignored. And we have lost way more than a decade that we can't get back because that work has never seriously been undertaken. or even deemed possible. 

 

What I have taken from this so far is that Barry's feeling is / was that it's enough to simply try (and usually fail) to put out fires as they ignite and just be grateful to whoever owns us, no matter how they operate, that our absolute wreck of a ground still has the lights on and employs a skeleton crew of staff and a handful of sub-standard players.

 

What a ridiculous, pessimistic, fatalistic outlook on the world. Yes other clubs have tried and failed. But other clubs have tried and succeeded. Massively. 

 

Either way, better to try than to just give up, do a deal with the devil, and watch the club disappear down the shitter with zero plan for what happens when the owner of the day happens to want out.

 

Unbelievable.

 

I just got to the bit about people going to employment tribunals being motivated by the chance to exploit a situation for cash, rather than for having genuine grievances. I had to stop at this point for a deep breath.

 

Anyway, I'll listen to the second half later. Maybe it gets better and I have shot my mouth off too soon 😉

Brilliant job interviewing him by the way, absolutely brilliant.

 

 

 

Edited by Luis Enrique
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45 mins in and I've had to have a break too!  Fair play to Matt and Andy for doing this, so far I'm reminded of the Frost/Nixon film with Nixon rambling on and on, eating up time and generally saying not very much.  Half-hearted apologies but self-excusing at the same time.

 

@Luis Enrique has absolutely nailed it.  He has been front and centre of this club for a long, long time. And that defeatest attitude is clear to see in almost every aspect of how the club is run.  It is no wonder we are where we are.

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33 minutes ago, Luis Enrique said:

To be fair I am only half way through so I probably shouldn't comment yet...

 

BUT... I've got a spare 10 mins now and I cannot help myself.

Putting personality issues aside for a moment, which I can't be bothered getting into and aren't really that important in the big picture.

 

What I can't believe is the sheer level of defeatism. Defeatism that has obviously existed, by Barry's own admission, since he first became involved and still does to this day.

 

Put simply, he doesn't accept that the most important job of the trust, or any organisation of fans, was to plan for a different future, to actually imagine a better way and try to make that happen. Or be ready for it. Get experienced people lined up. Build relationships with local or national businesses. Explore new ownership models or fundraising activities. Taking his comments to their logical conclusion, his position is that there is literally no point in doing any of that because it is too hard. 

 

He can't imagine any way the Trust could have been successful. He can't envisage any future without huge benefactors being involved. He can't imagine any way of actually getting those businesses or benefactors involved. He thinks the fans will fail because there aren't enough of us and we aren't organised or skilled or rich enough. And he doesn't appear to see the obvious: that organising us and preparing us and building on our skills and filling in the gaps over the last few years was the job that needed to be done and was the one thing that got totally ignored. And we have lost way more than a decade that we can't get back because that work has never seriously been undertaken. or even deemed possible. 

 

What I have taken from this so far is that Barry's feeling is / was that it's enough to simply try (and usually fail) to put out fires as they ignite and just be grateful to whoever owns us, no matter how they operate, that our absolute wreck of a ground still has the lights on and employs a skeleton crew of staff and a handful of sub-standard players.

 

What a ridiculous, pessimistic, fatalistic outlook on the world. Yes other clubs have tried and failed. But other clubs have tried and succeeded. Massively. 

 

Either way, better to try than to just give up, do a deal with the devil, and watch the club disappear down the shitter with zero plan for what happens when the owner of the day happens to want out.

 

Unbelievable.

 

I just got to the bit about people going to employment tribunals being motivated by the chance to exploit a situation for cash, rather than for having genuine grievances. I had to stop at this point for a deep breath.

 

Anyway, I'll listen to the second half later. Maybe it gets better and I have shot my mouth off too soon 😉

Brilliant job interviewing him by the way, absolutely brilliant.

 

 

 

Great post. 
 

It’s all I keep thinking- 

 

Barry ‘what’s the point of doing anything’ Owen. 
 

It’s so sad when the clubs mentality is exposed like this, and even worse they haven’t got the tiniest bit of self awareness to realise the culture they’ve created. 
 

Typified by this- 

 

Matt- ‘when you said, we couldn’t afford to go up- what was that?’

 

Barry- oh haha, if I could take that back I would, I think it was taken out of context, and it was meant more tongue in cheek’

 

Nah Barry, that's utter bollocks. That’s exactly what you meant and is proven by this interview, and how EVERYTHING is seen through a negative lense. 
 

No wonder we’re rotten. 
 

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Posted (edited)

@Luis EnriqueReally pleased you've picked up on this very important point that we were trying to explore in great detail by sighting & laying bare all the evidence our meticulous preparation for the interview could find. Barry is entitled to his opinion about how best the club should be run/administered, and we'd all be fools not to hear him out on those, because - let's face it - he has lots of experience that none of us have, inc a knowledge of the inner workings of the club, Trust/Foundation & EFL/FA.

 

But, our collective view on the podcast is that there has to be another way..... a way that has to involve us, the fans..... hell, if anything the last 20 years has proved, is the other way has failed. We've spoken to the FSA & other Trusts on the pod over the course of the last 9 months, so we know there is another way. Thanks for taking the time to share your post and understand the points we were trying to make. We all need to start to mobilise and unite to save our once great football club.

Edited by BPAS
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ffs was jus about to have a pleasnt stroll over the fields to the shop for some cigs and probably a cake for breakfast. Now l'm all torn and confused and likely to spend about a podcast length of time working out whether to listen to the poscast then go shop, go shop then listen to the podcast or go here and waste even more time by regaling people w my podcast related woes.

I even know that what l'm supoosed to do is turn on the podcast, get up, brush teeth, get dressed, make a brew but hold the button down until steam comes thru the button bc the water is so superhot, plug in headphones, go shop, come back, unplug headphones, drink brew which is miraculously just the correct temp, make custard in pan, drop cake in pan to lessen custard waste plus minimise washing up thereby cancelling out the environmental damage caused by overboiling the kettle, discuss podcast on here, wtsp and tlgrm, do something productive like have a bong and play FIFA.

Least l know.

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That interview has just reinforced my opinions....We have to try and get the owners out or convince Abdallah to at least put the club up for sale.

 

The time for talking Is well and truly  over!!!

 

I’m absolutely convinced after listening to that, we will either be relegated, will go into administration, or worst still liquidated at some stage next season.

 

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Very defensive from the off,

 

I can't say I disagreed with everything he said but he really isn't a loss to the club at all

 

Well done to the BPAS guys - brilliant to see some people finally ask the uncomfortable questions and also call out BS even if the response was "I'm not prepared to discuss that"

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Not sure how long l lasted but when BO used a sentence that started w 'before you do that, let me just..' and ended it with '..right to reply.' l just couldn't face his bullshit answer to the first real question!!

Basically, l'm sayin on this ocasion the poscast is too well done to listen to.

Try again later.

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2 hours ago, Luis Enrique said:

What I have taken from this so far is that Barry's feeling is / was that it's enough to simply try (and usually fail) to put out fires as they ignite and just be grateful to whoever owns us, no matter how they operate, that our absolute wreck of a ground still has the lights on and employs a skeleton crew of staff and a handful of sub-standard players.

"Realistic"

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Just finished listening to the Bazzer show. My dog, I have never heard such a pessimistic person in all my life, death, doom, plague pestilence and destruction. More slippery than a slippery thing on a slippy day in Slipperyville, doesn't have the bollocks to take the wrap for anything. He may have started at Latics with good intention but just like politicians, once you're in position you just carry the party line. If he couldn't affect things when in position, what was he doing there, that probably goes for Karl too. Feelings about A.L. and co. aside, Blitz has to take a lot of blame for what's going on at the moment, nothing is going in the right direction until everything is owned by one party. Good interview but the only issue I will take is the 'debacle of the new stadium' comment, moving to Failsworth would also have killed the club in my opinion. Keep up the good work.

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43 minutes ago, Chaddyexile84 said:

 

 

I can't say I disagreed with everything he said but he really isn't a loss to the club at all

Interesting point, because I tried really hard to put to focus on what was being said, not who was saying it. 

Some things I thought were really insular looking, but others quite revealing. 

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17 minutes ago, singe said:

Interesting point, because I tried really hard to put to focus on what was being said, not who was saying it. 

Some things I thought were really insular looking, but others quite revealing. 

 

I might not have been clear - that was what I meant - if you looked past his defensiveness some of his comments particularly about Mo and the treatment of Jamie were quite interesting as were his call to arms for a ding dong with Simon Brooke :D 

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2 minutes ago, Chaddyexile84 said:

 

I might not have been clear - that was what I meant - if you looked past his defensiveness some of his comments particularly about Mo and the treatment of Jamie were quite interesting as were his call to arms for a ding dong with Simon Brooke :D 

You were clear, was just saying my angle was fairly similar!

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Well done Matt. 👍🏻
 

So. . 
 

AL wants 5 million.

 

Blitz wants 6 million. 
 

Wigan went for 3 million all in. 
 

I say this because at the end you asked how do we move forward. 
 

The only answer to that is to put the club in admin, Barry and lots of others fear it. On the contrary, I say bring it on. Because it will concentrate minds, and prices will be more realistic. PTB have said they know of four offers for the club. It will always have interest, but not at circa 11/12 million all in.  I’m a long way past what division we play in, I just want to bottom out and start from scratch with no Barry and a positive and inclusive community club. 
 

 

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Some interesting points, be interesting to see if the OEC take up the offer to come back with their take on why the stand is currently closed. If it is about tickets being shown, why would the OEC not comply if it meant the stand could be opened? I think what is clear, we need an owner who has the willingness/funds to buy the club and the ground or we will die eventually.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, oafc1955 said:

That interview has just reinforced my opinions....We have to try and get the owners out or convince Abdallah to at least put the club up for sale.

 

1. The time for talking Is well and truly  over!!!

 

2. I’m absolutely convinced after listening to that, we will either be relegated, will go into administration, or worst still liquidated at some stage next season.

 

1. Yep, we all have to ask ourselves what are we actually doing to save our club. I  got to that point, I'm achieving nothing grumbling about it so doing something.

 

2. Hence the starting of the Contigency Lottery. http://www.tinyurl.com/OASF1895Lottery

Edited by singe
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