17/02/2014

Why Community Ownership can work

On Wednesday 19 June 2013 Ayr United Chairman Lachlan Cameron read out a statement at the club’s annual general meeting on the future of the 103 year old Honest Men. The statement announced the formation of a working group comprising a number of the club’s stakeholders, including the Ayr United Football Academy and Honest Men Trust. The group, facilitated by Supporters Direct Scotland, will investigate the “feasibility and requirements of potentially bringing the ownership of Ayr United into a community model”.

The idea of community (or fan) ownership has gained increased prominence in Scotland as the travails affecting Scottish football continue and a number of its high profile institutions, such as Rangers and Hearts, flounder. For many, community ownership has become a panacea for solving the ills of the game, or at least at their club. In a more real and present sense, it is increasingly the last resort for saving clubs from oblivion, with Dunfermline fans recently ‘saving’ their club and Hearts on the road to becoming fan owned. While some supporters have embraced the idea, a large number remain sceptical, indeed outright opposed.

This article seeks to dispel some of the myths surrounding community ownership by examining how community owned football clubs can operate. There are some common misconceptions surrounding community ownership and a better understanding – or at least different perspective – on the relevant issues will hopefully inform the debate on the future of Ayr United and other clubs.

In exploring what community ownership entails, it is useful to consider football clubs in three separate but interrelated regards: ownership, finance and operation. While the relationship between ownership and how a club operates is fairly straightforward, the association between ownership and finance is perhaps less so.

A traditional view may be that, as an asset or a company, like any other, football clubs in private ownership are the responsibility of their owner(s). Specifically, the owner is obligated to spend money in order to maintain and operate that asset, and to make it successful. While some supporters may be happy to absolve themselves responsibility for their clubs fortunes – “why should I give him my money, its his club” – when expectations that season ticket money and other expenses are wisely invested and the club is successful are not met, supporters are left frustrated. Invariably protestations are made, but with little option other than ‘put up or shut up’.

In this regard, football fans are reduced to being merely customers of their clubs. This, however, is an insincere comparison. If you are unhappy with the service provided by the supermarket you use, your broadband supplier or favourite restaurant you would have no qualms about going elsewhere. The same is not true of football. The financial and emotional investment a supporter make in his or her football club creates a strong bond, often reinforced by familial or social ties (nobody goes to Tesco with their mates after a few pints). Taking the decision to withdraw your custom form your football club is a difficult one to make. You may go less often, or even not at all. It is unlikely you would take your custom to another club.

An alternative way at looking at how a football club is financed is to consider the collective investment made by supporters. A reasonable question to ask may be should one person contributing £100,000 (possibly in the form of soft loans) a season have the controlling interest – and overall ownership – of a football club when there are five hundred supporters contributing £400 each? This collective £200,000 investment should, in my view, bring with it influence on how the club is run and how that money is spent. Furthermore, as owners of the club, its supporters would have access to information on how and where money is spent, and this transparency can only be a good thing.

One criticism levelled at fan ownership is that it equates to less money being available. This conviction stems from the idea that ‘ordinary fans’ cannot hope to invest the same levels of finance as a successful and wealthy businessman or consortia. The viewpoint is, of course, an accurate one and the examples from Scottish football are plenty: consider Roy McGregor, Eddie Thompson and Bill Barr. It is undoubtedly true that money facilitates success.

A football club’s basic income is derived from the following sources: gate receipts; commercial revenue streams such as sponsorship, hospitality, merchandise, lotteries and half-time draws, fundraising; media (including television); and monies distributed by the governing bodies, chiefly prize money. While the total income this amounts to will vary to a greater or lesser extent on success on the park, these represent steady, sustainable sources. In the case of traditionally owned and run clubs, owners, board members or other benefactors may additionally provide finance, often in the form of ‘loans’ and sometimes via complicated corporate structures. It is this finance that will often enable a club to compete at a higher level than could otherwise be expected based on the size of its fan base.

But why should successful and wealthy businessman not want to be involved in a club that was community owned and to provide this additional finance? Because they want control of a club? This can still happen under community ownership, albeit not overall control to the extent they can do whatever they like; because they want a return? Any investment in Scottish football is unlikely to see a return, but that too is possible; because their motivations are not in the best interest of the football club? Well, good.

This brings us on to the problems with ‘rich benefactors’ and clubs in ‘private’ ownership. For every Roy McGregor – who has, and continues to, run Ross County in a manner that has seen their exponential growth and allowed them to compete at the highest level – there are countless examples of owners who have walked away from football clubs in Scotland leaving financial devastation. The Scottish Green Party’s recent Bill aimed at giving supporters the right to buy their football club noted that all too often owners of Scottish football clubs have committed their club to spending money it cannot afford, supplementing revenue with their own resources. In this scenario, without a wealthy benefactor, sporting goals cannot be achieved through ‘normal’ trading, i.e. trading where expenditure is based on earned income. As a result, financial success and sporting success are, for the vast majority of clubs, mutually exclusive and clubs continue to be solvent only as long as their benefactors have the means to support them. When such means are exhausted, the club quickly moves from apparently rude health to severe insolvency.

Community ownership is one mechanism that can prevent this happening as unsustainable options are simply cannot be realised; if the club has no wealthy benefactor, the only way to run the club is as a ‘normal’ enterprise in which income and expenditure are linked in a sustainable manner (although more rigorous implantation of financial fair play regulations by the governing body would also be welcome, and would allow community owned clubs to compete on a more level playing field).

The ethos of community ownership can effectively protect football clubs from financial distress, by taking power away from owners who have the capacity to act in a way that harms the long term sustainability of the club. One specific mechanism is the Community Interest Company (CIC). Most senior football clubs operates as ordinary limited companies. Company law allows such companies to carry out business transactions that may be completely against the aims and wishes of their supporters and to the detriment of the club. It protects investors and shareholders but provides little or no protection to the community or its supporters. Where a CIC differs is that the company must act for the good of the community (in this instance, a football club) and restrictions that prevent profits and assets being diverted away from its supporters and the community. Specifically, an ‘asset lock’ prevents the assets of the company (for example a club’s home ground) being stripped from the company.

The recent Begbies Traynor Football Distress Survey (November 2013) covering Scottish football found a total of four clubs in the top three Scottish divisions were facing critical financial pressure at the end of October 2013 and a further 16 clubs, half of all those covered by the survey, were showing early signs of financial distress. It commented on clubs locked into cycles of financial distress, where aside from a big investment – and the message was clear that the majority of troubled clubs in Scotland can no longer rely on wealthy benefactors swooping in as white knights – it was hard to see what will save these clubs from facing administration unless they completely revisit their business models and make some fundamental changes. The report concludes that alternative structures such as community interest companies and fan-based ownership, may well become an increasing part of the solution and indeed aside from merging and consolidating clubs together, or allowing those who fail to create a reduction in the number of clubs, it is possibly the only hope for many.

Community ownership does not preclude additional sources of income, opens up new potential funding steams and should not be seen as something only appropriate for small-town clubs with limited ambition. The fact that community ownership will inevitably mean football clubs are run on a financially sustainably basis should not be seen as a disadvantage, as history has taught us even the largest clubs in the land can only run on an unsustainable basis for so long.

So perhaps community ownership need not lead to financial Armageddon, and indeed could be a safeguard against it. But what about how clubs in community ownership operate? A further criticism of community ownership is that supporters lack the wherewithal to successfully run a football club. Again, I would suggest there is no logic to this assertion. Football clubs up and down the country are run by supporters, successfully or otherwise: the only difference being they tend to also hold the largest shareholding. Distributing this shareholding more equitably, does not need to change how the club is run or financed. Community ownership does not thrust people, unequipped to run a football club, into the Boardroom. Instead, it ensures that those running a football club have accountability to the supporters (its community) and – more importantly – football clubs are run in a manner that benefits the community and not private individuals. The essence of fan ownership is therefore a move away from the situation at so many clubs where, collectively, supporters have no influence and Boards of Directors and owners have no accountability to supporters.

Community ownership in Scotland currently lacks an obvious exemplar, at senior level certainly. However, this is in no way evidence that it cannot work. So far, fan ownership has largely arisen in the Scotland against a legacy of failure, debt and limited capital. Fans – for example at Dundee, Clyde and Stirling Albion, have incurred debt purchasing the club, or inherited debt and they were faced with having to run a club in a way which no longer accumulated debt. Clyde are good example of this problem. Clyde became a Community Interest Company in November 2010. In December 2013, they were able to announce an operational profit of £80,000 for the year ended 30 June 2013. This is the fifth year in succession that the club – Scotland's first senior club to be wholly supporter owned – has made a profit and through tight financial control on costs Clyde debts have reduced from £½ million in December 2007 to £53,000. The club are on course to become debt free by November 2014. So while on the pitch, Clyde have slid from the First Division in 2009 to the bottom of Division 3 in recent seasons, they are slowly reaching a point, under fan ownership, where income can soon be used to grow the football club rather than paying off historical debt.

Community ownership should not be seen as the solution for the ills of Scottish football and the remedy to clubs financial troubles. It doesn't guard against bad decisions being made or guarantee success. However, where clubs have a responsibility not to a small number of shareholders but to their communities, defined as the local area and its supporters, and are run democratically, transparently and, importantly, sustainably they can look forward to a positive future. The largest stumbling block is how we get there, particularly where clubs find themselves in a cycle of financial distress. Where the debt burden is passed to the fans as new owners, it will take time for the benefits of community ownership to be realised.

The coming months could see Ayr United become a community owned football club. I believe it is an exciting prospect. An opportunity to breathe new life into the club, invigorate the Boardroom and to change the relationship fans have with those who make the key decisions at Somerset Park. It won’t be easy. What happens to the current debt burden – owned chiefly to current Directors in the form of loans – will be critical in determining how quickly community ownership can be a success at the club but, equally, it requires supporters to grasp the opportunity that it presents. The process can start with an understanding of what community ownership means and what it does not.

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This article has been written to coincide with Community Ownership Week, launched by Supporters Direct Scotland to celebrate and promote fan and community ownership of sports clubs.

I have been a member of the Ayr United Community Initiative – The Honest Men Trust Board since 2011. Formed in 2003, THMT’s goal is that Ayr United becomes as “a financially sustainable, open and inclusive Football Club owned by its supporters which is a genuine community asset and makes decisions aligned to the long term success of the club”.

The views in this article are my own and not necessarily those of THMT.


30/01/2014

Are the kids alright?

Looking at the progress of Ayr United’s young players under Mark Roberts

When Mark Roberts was appointed manager of Ayr United in May 2012 it was intended to herald a change in direction for club.  Chairman Lachlan Cameron, in announcing the departure of Brian Reid and the promotion of Roberts, stated that the club wished to place greater emphasis on the ‘youth pathway to the first team’ and talked of the ‘bubbling pool of talent’ within the Academy, now in its 8th year. There was to be a greater emphasis on young, home-grown talent.

With Roberts under increasing pressure, fairly or otherwise, after a sporadic series of heavy defeats and disappointing performances it seems an appropriate juncture to consider this area of his remit, particularly with rumours that Mark Shankland – one of the Academy’s brightest prospects – has asked to leave the club (Roberts has subsequently quashed the rumour, indicating the 18 year-old forward ‘needs to do better’ and ‘earn the right’).

Shankland, and others, may have justification for their frustrations. In 58 league matches in charge, Mark Roberts has fielded on average just one Academy player per game*. Taking account of the fact that Robbie Crawford was almost an ever present last season, making 33 league starts, it would appear that first-team opportunities are as limited for Academy prospects under Roberts as they were under Brian Reid, despite the initial rhetoric.

In Reid’s final season in charge, nine Academy players were used (taking account of league games only), amassing a total of 4207 minutes playing time, albeit over half of these can be attributed to Jonathan Tiffoney. This total is only 488 minutes less than Roberts’s first season in charge.  Yet, at the end of last season Roberts disingenuously claimed: “our remit at the start of the season was to bring through the kids and in that aspect we have done brilliantly”.  The claim doesn’t hold water. Robbie Crawford’s obvious talent demanded he became a first team regular: Roberts’s first choice midfield pairing at the start of the season was David Sinclair and Ryan McStay. Otherwise, Ross Robertson was Roberts’s first choice as strike partner for Michael Moffat at the start of the season, but was quickly withdrawn from the first team (and eventually sent on loan to Glenafton).  Mark Shankland also started the season, playing on the left and scoring against East Stirlingshire, but he too was dropped, only returning after a spell on trial with Birmingham (during which time Roberts seemingly discovered the player was a striker).  Wylie, Longridge, Wardrope, Nisbet all were given just few minutes at the end of the season. 

Even fewer Academy players have been selected by Roberts so far this season.  In 22 league matches, Academy players account for just 6.85% of total playing time.  Robbie Crawford has been in the starting line-up on 10 occasions, Alan Forrest 4 times (in addition to 10 substitute appearances) but beyond this, appearances for Aaron Wylie (who has subsequently left the club), Jackson Longridge, Mick Wardrope and Mark Shankland have been restricted to just a handful of substitute appearances, totalling little over 100 minutes. 

Beyond examining quantitative data concerning appearances and playing time, further evidence of Roberts’s reluctance to play Academy players is demonstrated in his selections in defence.  When Gordon Pope was suspended after picking up a red card against Airdrie United in August, it appeared to be the ideal opportunity to give Jackson Longridge a run in the team.  Instead, Roberts chose to play Michael Donald at left-back. The loss of Donald’s presence in midfield was keenly felt and United drew both games during Pope’s ban, including against 10 man Brechin City, despite taking a two-goal lead.  On the two occasions when injuries led Roberts to play Gordon Pope at centre-back, again Donald and not Longridge was used at left-back; Ayr lost 5-1 away to Dunfermline and 3-6 at home to Stranraer.

Ayr have been short defensively all season, with Martyn Campbell injury woes continuing which has highlighted the absence of another youngster (albeit not one who has come through the Academy) Josh McArthur, which is approaching something of a mystery.  McArthur started Ayr’s opening game of the season at Arbroath and looked competent alongside Alan Lithgow in what was an easy victory for the Honest Men.  His withdrawal after an hour, with the game won, seemed to make little sense.  McArthur has played just once more this season, as a 20th minute replacement for Campbell in Ayr’s narrow defeat at Partick Thistle in the League Cup. He hasn’t even been named on the subs bench since the start of December.

The fate of Longridge, McArthur and many others follows a fairly familiar pattern.  Glimpses of early promise – Longridge was named man of the match on his debut at home to Dundee back in April 2012 – followed by long spells of inactivity as far as the first team is concerned, with Roberts often preferring to pick square pegs in round holes.  There seems little prospect of 17 year-old McArthur making an appearance any time soon, despite United’s enduring search for a centre-back: “I’m looking everywhere for a central defender. I need someone who has played a lot of first team games and is an organiser”.  Roberts has also talked of the need for another striker in light of Michael Moffat’s impending suspension, despite Shankland champing at the bit for game time.

Of course, the young players on the fringes of the Ayr United first team may simply not be good enough. Roberts’s priority first and foremost is to win football matches and to do this he needs the strongest team possible.  He trains with these young players, regularly plays alongside them in Reserve game so is perhaps is the best person to judge whether they are ready for first team football. Conversely, there must be a case that young players require a run of games to assimilate themselves with the endeavours of senior football and opportunity to learn from mistakes.  A player can only prove they ready for first team football if they are given the opportunity to do so and at present only Alan Forrest and Crawford (slowly returning from illness) are being afforded this chance.

Introducing young players into first team football is not straightforward.  While it has borne dividends at Dundee United, Hamilton, Falkirk, Kilmarnock and other clubs, it can be a gamble.  And Mark Roberts may feel he is able to take what he perceives to be a risk.  Almost from day one, Ayr’s Challenge Cup defeat to East Stirlingshire in his first game in charge, Roberts has been under pressure. After just four months he admitted his job was at stake and since December 2012 the calls for Roberts to be sacked have never really gone away.  Can the manager trust youngsters like Shankland (who demonstrated his value when coming off the bench with his goal and performance against Partick Thistle in August), Longridge (who could do a job on the left when Michael Donald is flagging), McArthur or even Wardrope, Nisbet and others when they could make a mistake that might cost the side vital points? 

Or the other way of looking at is: ‘what has he got to lose?’  Senior players are equally capable of making mistakes, as evidenced at Stenhousemuir on Saturday.  Signings such as Kevin Kyle, culpable for a glaring miss at the end of the game, may be a ‘safe bet’ for Roberts but, in restricting the opportunities for others, (particularly in this case Shankland, a player who has previously attracted the attention of Liverpool, Rangers, Celtic and a number of English Championship sides) demonstrates the short-termism that has blighted Ayr’s on-field fortunes for too long. If Roberts had afforded Shankland the same patience as Kyle you suspect he may have had greater slack from United’s ever demanding support. As it is, fewer and fewer of those supporters appear convinced of Roberts‘s aptitude for the job.

Playing young players may cost Mark Roberts his job – it is difficult to envisage how he could continue in his role beyond the summer if the Honest Men fail to make the promotion play-offs at least. At the same time, Roberts was mandated to give Academy players the opportunity of first team football and this is not happening. Roberts’s apparent failure, so far, to integrate more younger, home grown, players into the team – or at least give them a fair chance – must be seen as another of his shortcomings.

League appearances by Ayr United Football Academy players

Season 2012/13 (Brian Reid)

Apps
Sub off
Sub not used
Mins
0+(1)
0
0
11
1
1
0
66
2+(2)
1
13
196
1+(1)
0
0
161
30+(2)
2
1
2536
1
0
1
90
1+(1)
1
1
80
9+(11)
1
13
895
1+(1)
0
2
172









4207

Season 2012/13 (Mark Roberts)

Apps
Sub off
Sub not used
Mins
5+(4)
2
12
446
2+(1)
2
1
186
2+(1)
0
0
195
5+(8)
5
8
467
0+(2)
0
0
46
33+(2)
6
0
2970
3+(10)
3
5
354
0+(1)
0
0
31









4695

Season 2013/14 – after 22 games

Apps
Sub off
Sub not used
Mins
0+(1)
0
7
18
4+(10)
3
3
545
0+(2)
0
13
46
0+(5)
0
12
42
0+(1)
0
8
1
10+(3)
5
4
839









1491

Source: andysstats.co.uk

* 58 league games equals 57420 minutes playing time (58 games x 11 players x 90 minutes). The aggregate playing time of AUFA players has been 6186 mins, which works out at 10.77% of total minutes. One player playing 90 minutes in all games (58 x 90 = 5220 mins) would represent 9.09% of total minutes.

23/10/2013

Selfless Malcolm a great assist for United

Striker Craig Malcolm currently finds himself out of the Ayr United first team, having lost his place to Kevin Kyle. The summer signing from Stranraer – who scored 48 goals in 112 appearances for the Stair Park club and netted 18 times in the Second Division last season – started the season in decent form, forming a promising partnership with Michael Moffat but struggled to find the net, scoring twice in 10 starts. At times, the 26 year-old’s finishing has been poor and he has squandered a number of very presentable opportunities, most notably against Airdrieonians at Brechin City home.

Malcolm celebrates his only league goal this season 
Yet, Malcolm can consider himself unlucky. His contribution to the side as a foil for Michael Moffat and his general hardworking attitude have perhaps gone unnoticed. This is reflected in the fact that Malcolm tops the assists chart at Somerset Park, with five. The first four of these assists have much in common. Malcolm has received the ball in the box with his back to goal, under close scrutiny for opposition defenders, and laid the ball off to a team mate who has scored. The best example of this is Mark Roberts’s goal at Stenhousemuir but Malcolm has also played a part in Alan Forrest’s winner at Hampden (where he played a 1-2 with the young forward); Michael McGowan’s strike at Stranraer and Michael Moffat’s opener against Brechin.

(Malcolm’s fifth assist came against East Fife, when he was able to get on the wrong side of his opposite number, collect a throw-in and square to Michael Donald to score Ayr’s forth of the match).

At times it has been difficult to imagine how Malcolm scored 18 league goals last season, in what was after all a fairly limited Stranraer side. He does not look to be a natural finisher, often snatching at chances and displaying a lack of composure; he does not have great pace or composure on the ball and he isn’t dominant in the air. Yet, the statistics speak for themselves and what is clear is that Malcolm played an important role in the side up until the arrival of Kyle, and his hold-up play and unselfishness was profitable to the side’s fortunes. United have often been criticised for a reluctance to shot, yet in Malcolm have a player who creates shooting opportunities for his team mates.

The opportunity to sign Kevin Kyle looks to be one Mark Roberts will not regret. Replacing Malcolm in the team for the visit of Rangers – after, it has to be said, two uninspiring substitute appearances as a trialist – he has gone on to play an important part in the side’s latest two victories, providing an exquisite assist for Scott McLaughlin at East Fife with the skipper returning the favour the following week, swinging in an inch perfect corner from which Kyle opened his account against Arbroath. With the former Sunderland and Hearts striker’s fitness increasing with each game (Kyle is visibly slimmer than he was a month ago), he brings a gravitas and physicality to the side that Malcolm simply doesn’t posses. Kyle is comfortable in taking the lead role in the side, however, arguably hasn’t yet fully integrated with his team-mates. His partnership with Moffat especially appears to still require some fine-tuning.

Kyle brings a new, albeit sometimes primitive, dimension to United’s play which has been effective but Malcolm’s contribution should not be overlooked. Hopefully Malcolm will continue to apply himself (he has two goals in three games for the Reserves) and does not become too downhearted by his absence from the starting XI. With Kyle’s injury record – and the fact his deal is up in mid-January – it is likely Malcolm will return to the team, a fact United fans should not be disheartened about.

Assists – 2013/14 (all competitions)

Malcolm 5
McLaughlin 4
Donald 3
McGowan 2
Campbell 1
Roberts 1
Kyle 1

17/10/2013

STATS! Michael Moffat's 50 goals for Ayr United

Michael Moffat signed for Ayr United on 10th January 2011 from South Ayrshire Junior club Girvan. The striker quickly became a fans favourite and was instrumental in the Honest Men's promotion via the play-offs at the end of that season, scoring in each of Ayr's four play-off ties, including a memorable winner at Glebe Park. On Saturday 12th October 2013, the Moff scored his 50th goal for the club, in his 120th starting appearance. To celebrate, here is an in-depth look at those 50 goals:


592
minutes played until his first goal for the club.
9
matches at Somerset before scoring a home goal.
54%
of goals scored away from home.
7
goals versus Arbroath (in 4 games) more than any other side.
22
teams against which Moffat has scored.
10
penalties.
6
goals in cup competitions.
10
goals scored in August, Moffat's most prolific month of the year. He is yet to score a goal in December.
16
times Moffat has been the first goalscorer.
1
goals scored in Moffat's 8 substitute appearances - an equaliser at home to Queen of the South in March 2012.
46%
first-half goals
78%
first-half goals this season (7 out of 9)
4
number of goals scored in the 90th minute or later - two have been winning goals.
2
hat-tricks.
62%
of games Moffat has scored in that United have won. Ayr have lost just 6 games in which Moffat has scored.
0.39
goals per game.
80
Moffat's 50th goal was his 18th in 2013, eqaulling his tally for the whole of 2012 with 80 days of the year to go.

10/09/2013

STATS! United's all-time record on artificial surfaces

Ayr United travel to Ochilview on Saturday to face Stenhousemuir with a less than glorious recent record on artificial surfaces. United played 9 fixtures on artificial surfaces last season - including four games at Station Park - and failed to win any of them, starting with a shock defeat to East Stirlingshire on the opening day of the season. In all the Honest Men have played 30 competitive fixtures on artificial surfaces. Here is a run down of some statistics covering those games:

P30 W9 D7 L14 F41 A50

1st
On the 5th Semptember 1987 Ayr United were involved in the first ever Scottish League fixture to be played on an artificial surface at Annfield, home of Stirling Albion.
1.66
United have conceded an average of 1.66 goals per game and kept 6 clean sheets in 30 competitive matches on artificial surfaces.
2
Ayr have taken just 2 from a possible 24 points in their last 8 league games on artificial surfaces.
5-0
Ayr's biggest win on an artificial surface came at the Excelsior Stadium in March 2011 when they beat Airdrie United 5-0. It is United’s last league victory on an artificial surface.
7
United have played on artificial surfaces at seven different grounds against nine opponents. This includes Brechin City at Forfar’s Station Park last season.
9
Ayr have nine wins and have earned 7 draws on artificial surfaces meaning they are unbeaten in 53% of their competitive fixtures on the surface.
10
SPFL grounds now have artificial surfaces. Ayr are yet to play on five of them (Falkirk, Hamilton, Queen of South, Annan & Clyde) in a competitive fixture. United didn’t play on Dunfermline's plastic pitch which was in place between 2003 – 2005 but did play two games at New Douglas Park on its original artificial surface.
21
It is 21 months since United's last win upon an artificial surface, which came in a Scottish Cup replay in November 2011 at Montrose. That is a run of 10 matches without a win on an artificial surface.
41
United have scored 41 goals on artificial surfaces, an average of 1.36 per game.
87%
The Honest Men have scored in 87% of their matches on artificial surfaces.