Giving Orient fans a voice
Leyton Orient Fans' Trust
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LOFT welcomes statement - protest still on

LOFT welcomes Francesco Becchetti's video statement, posted today on the club website. We absolutely echo his sentiments about backing the team for the remaining games of this season.

It marks the first formal communication directly to O's fans (other than programme notes) since the press conference on the day he took over the club; that we should be saying this nearly two years later speaks volumes.

It remains to be seen if today's statement marks a change in Mr Becchetti's approach to communicating with supporters, or is a reaction to the week's events and our call for protest at tomorrow's match against Dagenham & Redbridge. We genuinely hope that he wants to speak more in the coming months and years to supporter representatives - whether LOFT, the Fans' Forum or otherwise - and shareholders.

LOFT's committee has debated at length today on whether or not to continue with the planned protest. Ultimately, the prevailing view was that the protest should go ahead for three reasons:

  • our concerns over the instability at the club, being caused directly by the continual upheaval in coaching staff, and the damage this causes to the club's reputation
  • our very grave fears over what the latest filed accounts do not reveal about the club's future finances
  • the statement does not address if or when he will engage more with supporters' representatives, as we have been asking for nearly two years

We continue to call for supporters to show their concern at the way the club is being run, by not going to their seats at tomorrow's game until 7 minutes into the first half, to mark the 7 different people who have taken charge of the team in two seasons.

This protest isn't about Kevin Nolan, or Lee Harrison, or who manages and picks the team; this is about the long-term future of our beloved Leyton Orient and how the club is run and regarded.

We urge all supporters who share our concerns to take part in this protest, to show Mr Becchetti that we care as much about the stability and long-term future of the club we all love, as we do about what happens on the pitch.

We chose a late arrival as a form of protest, to show a visible sign of how fans feel without affecting the players at the crunch period towards the end of the game, and we know that everyone who does take part will cheer the team on as loudly and passionately as always, for the remaining vast majority of tomorrow's game and for the rest of the season.

Up the O's!

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