Phoenix looking for new team players

Thursday, 3rd February 2011

Last night, the Manchester Phoenix held an open meeting at The Cresta Court in Altrincham. As well as just over 120 fans attended including, Ian Hudson of Pyscuity, The Millingtons, from Millington’s Paper, Howard Evans from Kingfisher Graphics along with James Archer, Tom Duggan, Steve Fone, Joe Miller and Neil Morris from the Club.

The meeting was held to help galvanise the fan base into becoming the best-supported team in the League. Morris, who has owned the team for the last 7 years, since the demise of the Storm, explained how he believed, for the Club to be truly successful, the Fans need to become supporters demonstrating a true affinity to the team. He went on to explain that ideas and feedback are regularly bandied around in local bars before and after the game as well as across a wide spectrum of social media platforms. The problem he believes is that as there is no conduit directly into the Club all the information just ends up dissipating.

In a recent interview a journalist asked him why he thought The Manchester Phoenix fan base was so poorly represented, as they had the smallest Supporters Club in the League. His response was to say that the Fans of the Phoenix had taken 485 seats at the play-off cup final already and their team had not even qualified for the tournament yet. His belief in the fan base was such that he had already asked another team to share their block with a neighbour before absorbing the last public block giving the Phoenix fan base a total of 550 seats at this massive event.

It was apparent last night that the Manchester Phoenix organisation gets no financial support from any outside agencies or organisations. Morris made a plea for every fan of the team to join the team's Supporters Club as this is the only place he can go to get help with bringing in players to bolster the squad in the final assault on the title. The squad members gave an insight into why they wanted to be a part of the Phoenix collectively saying it is the best Club behind the scenes any of them have every played for. They have great doctors, physiotherapists, chiropractors and probably the greatest player in British Ice Hockey history leading them out every week in Tony Hand MBE, the leading points scorer in the League.

Something must be right in the Club as Morris had no problem bearing his soul in front of three of the main sponsors last night and none of them even flinched. In fact they were very positive about their involvement with the Club and went on to endorse their support and belief in the organisation. The Millingtons said that they have been involved with the Club now since its inception in 2003 and have never really looked back. Both Hudson and Evans agreed that the organisation is a sleeping giant and the best is yet to come. Hudson commented on what great things the Supporters Club had achieved so far this season, and went on to say imagine what we could achieve if we all became one.

Morris finished by saying he wanted as many fans as was possible to become supporters and be part of this seasons campaign, join the Supporters Club and help organise the fan base into an affective group of people who act and don’t just talk about being part of a great club. He even said he knows money is tight and that anybody who is struggling for funds that has already purchased a ticket for the Playoff Cup finals could join for half price. In an attempt to help the Club, all those that joined last night did not wish to take him up on his offer and paid full price for their membership.

Supporters in the audience at the fan meeting on 2nd Feb 2011

A good crowd turned up
(Image: Nick Ogden)

James Archer talking at the fan meeting on 2nd Feb 2011

James Archer praises the Phoenix setup
(Image: Nick Ogden)

Joe Miller at the fan meeting on 2nd Feb 2011

Joe Miller explains why he chose to come back to Manchester
(Image: Nick Ogden)

Neil Morris talking at the top table at the fan meeting on 2nd Feb 2011

Neil Morris tells it as it is
(Image: Nick Ogden)

The panel at the fan meeting on 2nd Feb 2011

The Panel
(Image: Nick Ogden)

The top table at the fan meeting on 2nd Feb 2011

The Top Table
(Image: Nick Ogden)