Manchester City fan group urges supporters to boycott Community Shield
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A Manchester City fan group is urging other City fans to boycott the Community Shield at the start of next season.
The call comes amid more travel issues for the supporters of the Treble winners, after train strikes made their journey to the capital for the FA Cup final earlier this month.
Though there are no strikes planned time, the 1894 group have said that the kick-off time, 17:30 on August 6, a Sunday afternoon, has been picked to suit TV timings and is once again putting match-going fans second in the thoughts while scheduling.
"Dear Manchester City fans," the post, shared on Facebook, began. "1894 urge you to join us in boycotting the Community Shield game against Arsenal on August 6th. The 17:30 kick-off time presents significant travel challenges from Manchester, making it difficult for many loyal supporters to attend. It's time match-going fans were treated as a priority rather than an afterthought."
The group has claimed that a boycott would send a "strong message" to organisers that match-going fans matter, though it remains unlikely that the club won't sell the majority of their 40,000-odd allocation.
"By boycotting this fixture, we aim to send a strong message to the FA and ITV about the impact scheduling has on fans," the message continued. "Our collective absence from the stadium will demonstrate our discontent and advocate for fairer game times in the future.
"We understand the love and dedication you have for City, but we believe that our collective action will bring about positive change. We ask fans, who are in a position to do so, to make either a £10 donation, or the equivalent cost of a match ticket, to MCFCfoodbank or another local charity."
The post finished with a series of contacts for the group, which has over 13,000 followers on Facebook, 35,000 followers on Twitter and near 13,000 on Instagram.
The claim seemed to gain the support of followers, too, with one fan replying: "I will be boycotting this game. As much as i love City, we need to make a stand!'
Another added: 'Ill do anything for City but this boycott is aimed squarely at the FA! Disgraceful treatment of fans!"
Just Arsenal supporters at Wembley in August, then.