Late last month, it emerged that Liverpool FC were nearing an agreement with the club’s supporter’s trust, Spirit of Shankly, concerning official fan representation at the board level of the club. Today, following a vote by SoS members, that representation has been finalised and announced.
The creation of a Supporters’ Board had been in the works following last year’s efforts by Liverpool and other top European clubs to form a breakaway super league that sparked a broad and unprecedented backlash across English football.
The board will maintain 16 elected members, with ten drawn from Spirit of Shankly membership and six sourced from other fan groups. While it will have no say in day to day club operations, it will be updated regularly on fan-facing strategic matters and is intended to be able to block another undertaking such as the super league.
Further, the role of the Supporters’ Board will be enshrined in the club charter, meaning that if the club were to be sold in the future the board and its roles and rights would be maintained unless the board itself agreed to a recension.
“The board has been developed as part of the club’s commitment to strengthen dialogue with supporters and increase the involvement of fans in decision-making processes,” read a statement from the club. “As such, the new process will be put in place to enable deeper consultation with supporters on fan-facing strategic decisions.
“The Supporters Board will be made up of a group of supporters that represent the club’s diverse fanbase. The Supporters Board will hold regular meetings with the club and the chair will be invited to attend LFC’s main board meetings when fan-facing strategic matters arise.
“The Supporters Board will consist of 10 Spirit of Shankly committee members, plus six other representatives drawn from other fan organisations, including Liverpool Disabled Supporters Association, Kop Outs, Spion Kop 1906, Official Liverpool Supporters Clubs, [and the] Liverpool Women’s Supporters Committee.”
While other clubs in England announced various efforts to allow for greater fan involvement due to pressure following the super league debacle, Liverpool’s move is widely considered to be the most meaningful.
The club’s owners may remain imperfect, but they deserve significant credit for that, as do Spirit of Shankly and the other fan groups for pushing for and securing representation at the board level of Liverpool Football Club.