RetroUnited.com editor Daniel Burdett caught up with the Perth Manchester United Supporter’s Club to get more information for Australian based Reds.
Firstly, can you tell us about the Perth Manchester United Supporters Club (PMUSC) – when did it start up and how has it developed over the years?
The newly formed PMUSC started after the pre season friendly in Sydney 2013. It occurred to Steve Long (Chairman) after speaking to two different airlines that around 1500 fans had flown from Perth to watch the 20 times champions. Everyone you seem to bump into was from Perth. So the wheels were set in motion. By the end July a committee was formed. With Chris Paxton (secretary), Lee Stround (Events Manager) and Phil Band as treasurer. The first season was a hard slog. But this season has seen the club grow with 250 members with around 45 being One Utd members. The club will soon join the long list of supporters clubs as been official.
Can you tell us how supporters can join PMUSC?
There are two ways. One turn up at the games we can watch or download the form off our Facebook page.
The club will soon have a website that will allow everyone to join online.
Obviously there is a big time difference compared to the UK which makes for very unsociable hours for Manchester United supporters there in Perth to watch our matches live on TV. Where do PMUSC meet up for matches and how often?
The club want a home that was fair for everyone to travel to. As the CDB is spilt by the river. We looked for somewhere that was close to transport links. The home of the PMUSC is the Mount Henry Tavern, Manning Rd, Como.
Due to liquor licensing laws we can only watch games that are within the opening times. We can apply for a 1hrs late permit. This prevent the under 18’s coming down with their dad’s.
It was a big part in helping spread the word. We are lucky that we have a social networking freak in Carl Conner. His passion in spreading all Utd news and to squash the Rumours is unbelievable. He updates both Twitter and FB.
Manchester United played in Sydney last year, with a fast selling out crowd of over 80,000 fans attending this match. Did the PMUSC travel over to this match too? What did you think overall about United’s trip to Australia last year?
At this time we were all just lads from Perth. It is this event the kick started the club.
– How does support for Manchester United in Australia, compare, especially in numbers, to that for other English clubs like Liverpool and Arsenal? Also how does it compare against other European clubs like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Juventus, Milan, Inter and Bayern Munich?
At this time there are three official clubs in Australia. Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. We aim to be the fourth. I know that Liverpool have a good following in Perth. But the others are small following or not at all. Just been reading about City playing Real Madrid in the MCG. It’s a 100,000 capacity stadium. It’s going to look empty. Unless you buy one and get one free.
– The A-League (Soccer) has been going for around a decade there in Australia. How do you feel this has gone? There have been a number of well known Football Legends, including Manchester United’s Dwight Yorke, who have appeared in the A League, how have they done there?
The A-league for me is hampered with franchise rules. If they let the clubs run as a business then it would be bigger and better. It is good to see that there are only allowed one star player and three overseas players. Which will only help Austraila produce better players.
– Perth Glory play in this A-League too, do many members of PMUSC also follow them?
Yes there are a lot of members that follow both teams. Most boys will go to watch the Glory and then come down the pub to watch Utd. So I guess the time difference has its perks.
– Former Manchester United goalkeeper Mark Bosnich is back living in Australia and is a presenter on Fox Sports Australia. How has he been doing in his TV work there?
Bozza is going good. He tries not to be biased towards Utd but it does come out. He would be a bloody legend if he could pop in and watch a game with the club.
– Do PMUSC make any trips over here to Manchester to watch United play?
At the moment we have individuals making trips over. We still have plenty of contacts for tickets and the club will help as many members as we can to get tickets.
– What have you made of our new manager Louis van Gaal and also United’s season so far?
So much has come out about LVG being this and that. The same was said about SAF. What we are seeing on the field is all that matters. He has got us playing 100% better than last season. I really hope he can get us as high up as possible in the top four. He is the right man at this time. He will bring us trophies and I also think he will stay longer.
– Thank you for your time and we wish PMUSC all the very best.
Follow PMUSC on twitter – https://twitter.com/PerthMUSC
PMUSC are on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/groups/perthmusc/