FA to rule on Hull name change
Published 09/04/2014 | 07:32
Hull City supporters are hoping the club's controversial bid to rename themselves as Hull Tigers will be consigned to history later on Wednesday.
The Football Association is expected to block the rebranding proposal of Hull owner Assem Allam as the matter is discussed at a meeting of its council.
The verdict is likely to be a formality with the governing body's own membership committee having already unanimously recommended the council reject the plans.
The possibility of an appeal may exist but fans, who have been vociferous in their opposition to the idea, hope that will be the end of the issue.
Ian Waterson, spokesperson for campaign group 'City Til We Die' said: "This is a day that has been marked on the calendar for some time.
"The membership committee listened to all the evidence from all sides of the argument, they did the hard graft, and came to decision to a unanimously reject the name-change application.
"It would be historic now for the FA council to fly in the face of what their membership committee has recommended.
"The FA has decided to support the fans on this which is excellent news for football and football in this country.
"The Allams have got all the tools they need to generate extra revenue without changing the name of the football club."
Aside from this issue, Allam has been a popular owner having resuced the club from financial crisis in 2010 and plotted a course that led to promotion to the Premier League last year.
Allam's son Ehab, City's vice-chairman, last month said the family had put £74million into the club and had little more to give.
The name change was proposed as a means of creating greater marketing opportunities to raise more funding to continue competing at the top level.
Allam said the name City was "common" and has even threatened to quit if his plan is blocked.
He may, however, be encouraged to fight on following the publication of results of a fans' poll which appear to back him earlier this week.
In the ballot of season-ticket holders over the age of 16, 2,565 voted for the rebrand with 2,517 against. A further 792 expressed indifference.
Critics have pointed out, however, that another 9,159 did not take up their right to vote and claimed that the questions were loaded in favour of a yes vote.
Hull have actually been known informally, and affectionately, as the Tigers for much of their 110-year history due to their playing colours of black and amber.
Waterson feels this issue has had a detrimental effect on a popular part of the club's tradition.
He said: "What is sad about all of this is that we were very proud of our nickname the Tigers.
"But now to use the Tigers is almost seen as dirty and it shouldn't be like that.
"People like the fact we are the Tigers - but it is our nickname and should not be included in our name of Hull City AFC, which is our formal name."
The club have not commented ahead of meeting, officially because they want the focus to remain on this weekend's FA Cup semi-final against Sheffield United.