We had our 2nd Western Sydney Wanderers Supporters meeting last night at the Woolpack. The following is a summary from myself as well as the notes of @Taurus.
As shown in a previous thread, the Western Sydney Wanderers Supporters Home End name was voted for and confirmed as Red & Black Bloc.
Lyall spoke on several key issues. A number were commercially confidential and still in the progress of negotiation so concrete details were somewhat limited. Another consideration is the desire to ensure Western Sydney Wanderers remains in the news and this means being able to offer 'product' by way of information releases to the media over the next few months.
Western Sydney Wanderers Club Business:
* The Independence Of Western Sydney Wanderers and It's Board: The club will have a fully independent board. Naming these board members is in progress but is hoped to be complete in 2 weeks.
* Sponsorship - Negotiations are in place and Western Sydney Wanderers hopes to have a release of this information by the end of the month.
* Merchandise - Is in the process of being developed, but requires the stadium deal to be completed.
* Social Club - The plan is for a Western Sydney Wanderers social club to be established in the future.
* Active Support - Lyall spoke about the learning experience himself, the clubs and the A-League as a whole have been party to in the last few years. A combined effort between the supporters, club, stadium, police and security is desired.
Club Support and Memberships:
* Memberships - No family tickets will be sold in the home end. It will be allocated/reserved seating as per FFA guidelines.
* Free Travel - This has been considered but the cost of doing this would have to be factored into every membership and at this stage a free travel aspect to membership is unlikely to happen.
* Community Engagement - Tim Thorne has been appointed to this role. Lyall spoke incredibly highly of his talents. Tim has experience with Gladesville Hornsby Football Association and with the Central Coast Mariners. Lyall Gorman appointed Tim for the Mariners community development role focused in the north-west and far northern Sydney regions. He has been successful with the Mariners in this regard and I hope now that with a much wider area of support to canvas that a similar level of quality could produce exceptional results.
* Junior Engagement - Unlike other codes and teams which provide a blanket free membership or discounts across the board, Western Sydney Wanderers are club is looking to target individual associations at a per-game level.
Support and Facilities:
* Stadium - The deal is in negotiation. I feel that it is nearly complete. Lyall confirmed that they understand that the supporters desire a single home stadium. The current situation on his end was that if these negotiations are successful, that this desire will be satisfied to either a large or complete extent.
* ANZ - Lyall made no secret that ANZ are heavily lobbying for both the training facility position and for Western Sydney Wanderers games to be played there. Again, Lyall confirmed that the club understands the desire of the fans to avoid this stadium completely.
* Club Affiliations - A question about Western Sydney Wanderers having affiliations with other clubs was asked. Lyall replied that an affiliation with a big club is in the works. This may be linked into the Nike merchandise affiliation.
* Academy - Western Sydney Wanderers has a goal of establishing a full youth setup from the early years up to the Youth League and beyond.
On the Field:
* Pre-season - 9 matches look to be the number that will be played, with 2 against A-League opposition. The first Western Sydney Wanderers pre-season match will take place in a week and a half on Wednesday the 25th of July.
* Marquee Players - A marquee must make it's money back. The example given was Michael Owen who would cost $5 million.
* Visa Players - We should expect at least 4 positions filled, if not all 5.
* Playing Roster - No specific scouting or youth policy has been implemented for Western Sydney Wanderers due to tight guidelines. Players with something to prove have been a major highlight of the recruitment.
* Youth and Women's League Matches - For a variety of reasons these matches are unlikely to be in any 'double header' with a A-League match. Cost is one factor, another is opening the stadium hours earlier, another is pitch wear. There may be double headers of the Youth & Women's team. It appeared that the plan was for W-League games to be played out of Campbelltown with Y-League matches played at Blacktown and Penrith.
* Futsal - The club will be concentrating on the 3 core teams. Adding a Futsal team is simply not worth the investment in time or money at this stage.
* Video Replay - Lyall has moved away from a previous FFA directive to stop showing replays.
Discussion was made about incorporating a non-profit organisation to enable a more professional, transparent and open access supporters group. This was received well and I believe steps will be taken to this end soon.
Active Support Leaders:
The group has decided to build this organically. However there are several people who are already experienced with active support leadership and they will help guide and shape the active support as the pre-season begins.