Paedophilia within the game

Discussion in 'General football forum' started by Dogtanian, 16 Nov 2016.

  1. petrusha

    petrusha

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    I don't think you can necessarily judge the claimants as simply seeking a big payout, though that's the substance of Bennell's defence to many of the charges he faces in the current trial. We should find out fairly soon more about the allegations of what City did, but the three cases that have been brought against City so far are from men whom Bennell has been convicted of abusing in the past. Abuse takes a terrible toll on survivors and if our club failed them, thus facilitating that abuse, when we invited them into our youth set-up to pursue their dreams of becoming professional footballers, it's only right that they should have the recourse against City that the law allows.
     
  2. mat

    mat

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    I agree anyone with every word you say. I put my argument wrongly. I'm sure the clubs defence will be we literally are not the same club anymore and have all the safeguards in place proving it.
     
  3. Uncle Wally One Ball

    Uncle Wally One Ball

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    That isnt a defence though.
     
  4. geoff clipp

    geoff clipp

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    Regardless of whether or not we're run by the same people anymore we literally ARE the same club. If it does indeed transpire that in the past, employees of the club turned a blind eye to child abuse, then I don't think the club will put up any form of defence. I'm sure they will express their horror at what has happened and demonstrate that the current regime has safeguards in place (i think we already did our own investigation into it), but they will still accept any punishment (which is the correct course of action in my opinion). There has to be recourse to hold an organisation accountable for this kind of thing no matter how long ago it was.

    Seems there's a few people in here who are more bothered about how this reflects on City rather than what those boys were subjected to. I think there's a very good chance people at City knew about Bennell and their failure to act allowed more boys to be raped and abused. Sorry if it's hard for City fans to hear, but our own discomfort at hearing those truths is totally irrelevant when compared to what the victims have been through. Any sensible person should be able to see that it shouldn't necessarily reflect on those involved with the club now, but that doesn't mean we should try to bat these claims away to protect the club's reputation (which is precisely what people did 30 years ago).

    Should also add, as someone else has pointed out, that whilst I think employees at City were probably aware, it's also likely it was endemic through the game and ignored at all levels. So whilst I have no issue with City being taken to task over this, I also expect other organisations to be also held to account and all of them should accept any punishment coming their way.
     
  5. petrusha

    petrusha

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    One thing that will be interesting is to see what attitude City were taking to the civil claims and the claimants before the abuse scandal really broke when Andy Woodward went public about Bennell. That was several months after proceedings were issued against City, and presumably the claimants and the club had some contact before that. If the reaction of the club was initially to play hardball, then the modern MCFC might come in for some stick. That's entirely speculative on my part. I've no idea whether we did, but I float it as basically the only way I can see in which the modern club, as opposed to the club we were in the 1980s and 1990s, might be seen to be at fault.

    Otherwise, we simply handle it as @geoff clipp has posted above. I fully agree with everything he writes. There's a breed of modern football fan that reacts with ferocious indignation to any perceived criticism of their club. As far as I'm concerned, we owed those lads playing for Whitehill a duty of care. If it turns out that we've failed them (and that's clearly going to be alleged once the verdicts are in), we hold our hands up, apologise, and do what the law requires (plus more if we realistically can) to make amends. We can't undo the past, but we can act appropriately now, and so we should.
     
  6. mat

    mat

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    I agree with everything you've just posted. It is an emotive subject. One of those where people who've had experience of it will understand the fears, self loathing, and lack of support victims who silently carry it it ought all their life.

    I abhor all kinds of abuse. My own life experiences have formed that view. I would like all victims to get justice for their suffering.
     
  7. petrusha

    petrusha

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    He's been found guilty on most of the counts he was facing but they haven't come to a decision on some of the others yet. The woman tweeting below is a BBC journalist:

     
  8. petrusha

    petrusha

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  9. Mad Eyed Screamer

    Mad Eyed Screamer

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    Did we though? (I'm not saying we don't, I'm asking the question.)
    Bennell wasn't employed by City. Whitehill was run independently from City but with obvious links. Are those running Whitehill being sued too?

    Of course, there is maybe only one person alive from that era at City who can stand in court and say whether 'Manchester City' (as against individuals who may have known) knew about Bennell. Mr B Halford....
     
  10. petrusha

    petrusha

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    Whitehill was generally recognised as a feeder club for the City youth set-up and there have been claims (not disputed AFAIK) that it was funded by City. Many accounts also have it that Bennell was allowed to take the lads to Platt Lane regularly and that he reported to Ken Barnes and his staff about the development of individual players.

    When I say we owed the lads a duty of care, I know they were different times and you wouldn't expect processes to be put in place in the way they are today. Nonetheless, I do believe that people at MCFC were in a position where they might have had grounds to be suspicious of Bennell, or to have heard rumours/allegations about what was happening. That seems to be what's behind the civil law actions brought against the club - and if that did happen and people at MCFC didn't take appropriate action, then I do say that the club failed the boys in question.

    But we'll probably know more tomorrow anyway, because you'd think that verdicts will be reached on the remaining counts. At that point the stories of more survivors of Bennell's abuse will be highlighted in the media. I suspect we can expect a statement from the club about its investigation, too.
     

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