The Dundee FC Supporters’ Society hope to be able to help ease the Dens Park club’s cash flow crisis within days rather than weeks as they await the decision of their members.
The Dark Blues fan group have reserves totalling £34,000 and have sent out a questionnaire for members to vote on how to help the club during the coronavirus shutdown.
The deadline for responses is noon tomorrow and Society director and secretary Ian Baird hopes to be able to move quickly to put the members’ votes into action.
He told the Tele: “We recognise the kind of situation facing Dundee as a club right now and we are moving as quickly as we can.
“We had responses almost immediately and plenty have been coming back, though I can’t obviously disclose what they are.
“The deadline is Wednesday then it might take a couple of days to assess what the next step is. Any money can be paid as soon as the decision is made.”
The move follows an initial breakdown in talks between the fan group and the club a few weeks ago and the Society have indicated their desire to re-establish a dialogue.
After that breakdown, the club and the Society exchanged statements with the fans group insisting a ‘no-strings attached’ donation from their reserves wasn’t possible, due to their own rules.
However, the Society board have given their members six options on how they can use their reserves to help the club.
Those options are a share purchase, an interest free loan, to support the Dundee FC in the Community Trust, supporting the new Dundee FC Historic Trust, funding of free season tickets for schools and community groups or funding of stadium improvements to benefit supporters.
Once guidance is received from the vote, Baird and the Society say they will approach the club to hash out details of how to move forward.
He said: “We are hoping to get a response from the club and would like to take forward discussions once more. Once this decision is made, the board will be in a position to approach the club.
“I have to say I am very much looking forward to being in a position to be able to do that. We will be talking days, not weeks, ideally.”
He added: “Following the message previously from two weeks ago, this is our response to John Nelms’ request for a significant contribution from the Society’s reserves.
“It has taken time but this is the Society doing what it must do to arrive at a decision. The money is the members’ money so the board must seek their views.
“We have discretion to use small amounts but this is a substantial sum of money and we need to take a decision that reflects our members’ views.
“We are very keen to ensure everyone understands what the Society is. We are a community benefit society and therefore have to comply with clear rules.
“We have to do things properly.”
Last month managing director John Nelms said Dundee had lost £500,000 after the 2019/20 season was cut short and is in the midst of re-shaping the club to ride out the difficult months ahead.
The SPFL yesterday confirmed October 6 as the start of the Betfred Cup meaning competitive football and the income it brings won’t return for the Dark Blues for two-and-a-half months.
Yesterday, the club announced an end to their player consultation which saw the remaining first-team squad agree wage cuts between now and May while plans are being put in place to scale back the club’s youth structure.