Now is the time for some straight-talking, Mr Ryder

Now that we are safe from getting drawn into a relegation scrap all eyes are turning to next Wednesday night’s meeting with a certain Keith Ryder.

The man named by the administrators as the preferred bidder for Port Vale has pledged to meet with fans for an open forum.

Initial anger from a minority of supporters that Mr Ryder wasn’t at last week’s press conference has abated somewhat as people wait patiently to see what the Lancashire businessman has to say for himself.

I have kept out of it up to now because I’ve yet to speak with the bloke and searching the internet for information at this stage is a sure-fire route to madness.

One thing I’ve learned in the last 12 months is that anyone who rocks up at Vale Park with anything other than the club’s best interests at heart will be rumbled very swiftly.

Due to previous bad apples, any new arrivals in the board room will be scrutinised to within an inch of their life. And rightly so.

Mr Ryder has to understand that everything he does or says from this point on will be analysed by supporters and the local media.

If he sets a deadline and then misses it, he will be vilified.

If he promises investment and it fails to materialise – for whatever reasons – he will be tarred with the same brush as previous failed regimes.

If he treats the fans with contempt or tries to pull the wool over their eyes then he will face an almighty rebellion.

Mr Ryder has to realise that, while all fans are very grateful for his potential investment, he is walking into no-man’s land where a fragile cease-fire is just about holding.

Where Port Vale is concerned, the trust of the cynical and battle-weary supporters has to be earned.

This makes next Wednesday’s initial meeting with fans vital for Mr Ryder.

He has to be prepared to answer questions honestly and openly and not hide behind the old ‘I’ll come back to you on that one’ excuse.

People, quite rightly, want to know who Keith Ryder is, what his background is and why he is interested in Port Vale FC.

I want to know what his relationship was with previous directors and where the money he plans to invest in our club is coming from.

It’s a simple question: Is it Mr Ryder’s money or is he the front man for a consortium and, if so, who are his associates.

Now is the time for some straight-talking.

Read my Port Vale articles every Friday during the season in The Sentinel


3 thoughts on “Now is the time for some straight-talking, Mr Ryder

  1. Richard Whitehead says:

    After revealing he loaned the club £100k and was going to invest with the old regime, you have to now draw some suspicions as to how close he is/was to them.

  2. peter johansen says:

    Ditto from me, Martin also. Plus a few more questions as well. Vale fans will suffer fools no more. Speak up, Mr Ryder and be honest. Hiding behind MP-speak will simply not do.

    See you all there.


  3. melvyn williams says:

    Dont think we are safe yet, Martin. If HMRC dont like the administrators’ offer then more points could be taken off us – or have i got that wrong?

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