As outlined in the letter that financial members should have received as part of their notification of the AGM, these include changes to the club's constitution with regards the make up of the committee, a vote to amalgamate with South Melbourne Women's FC (which has been approved at SMWFC's end), and the tabling of documents regarding the Lakeside lease.
Below are some of the questions that I would like to see asked at the upcoming AGM. They are intended to be a reference point or guide for any eligible member to refer to during the meeting, which anyone present may choose to ask. Doubtless there will also be people who do or do not read this blog who will have their own questions to ask, and for that reason this list should not be viewed as exclusive, exhaustive or pointed towards or against the interests of any particular faction of the club.
I have deliberately left off questions regarding Nick Epifano, because:
- While I acknowledge the importance of the matter to a section of our membership, I am concerned that too much attention paid to that issue will make us lose track of other very serious issues of compliance and governance.
- I expect those interested in that topic in particular to be armed and ready as a matter of due course regardless of what I may say or think, and as members they can go for their lives on the matter.
Financial statements, legal compliance and NPL compliance
I'd ask more things about the financial statements except that I'm more or less functionally innumerate in these matters.
- Why has the AGM date been set so late? And why is the AGM repeatedly held late?
- Did the committee apply to ASIC for an extension to holding an AGM?
- If they did not, who would be liable for the financial penalties potentially imposed by ASIC - the club or the directors?
- Is it true that the AGM was not due to be called until the committee was alerted to the drawing up of the petition of the EGM by South members during round 1 against Heidelberg?
- If this is not true, why were the financial statements of the club not ready for viewing by the members upon the announcement of an AGM, as required by the motion passed by the members in 2013?
- What steps is the club required to take in order to have its NPL licence renewed? What criteria is the club lagging behind in terms of the future of the NPL?
- How much debt is the club carrying, and to whom is it owed?
- Does the listed item regarding expenditure on wages include only the players, the footballing department, or the entire wage bill of the club?
- What processes does the Club put in place to restrain costs?
- What is the proportion of cash vis a vis contra sponsorship?
- What processes are being put into place to service and maintain the current level of sponsorship?
- How much has the deal with BLK saved us compared to our previous deal with Adidas?
- Does the club still receive financial compensation for the grand prix disruption, as was the case in the past?
- What, if anything, did the club get out of the teams that used Lakeside Stadium during the 2015 Asian Cup and 2015 International Champions Cup?
- Why does the club continue to push the social media numbers line, when the day to day concerns of the membership are based on the failure to deal with the practical elements of the lease and social club?
- Does the club have benchmarks regarding its social media enterprises? For example, what are the targets for overall hits and unique hits to the website? Likewise for views of the videos and TV show?
- Has the club ever purchased Facebook likes and/or Twitter followers?
- What is the current relationship between ourselves and the broader media? Are there specific media groups or persons in the media that we are looking to work closely with?
- Since the FFV's forced constitutional changes to club membership criteria - which included making seniors players, and the parents of junior members members automatically - what has been the breakdown of paying memberships and memberships allocated to parents of junior players?
- Can you please provide at least some membership data documenting our numbers since the return to Lakeside?
- Who is primarily responsible for recruitment, Chris Taylor or members of the committee? And what is the usual process for recruiting players?
- Who was responsible for recruiting Philzgerald Mbaka, sight unseen to any of the coaches?
- Who was responsible for the re-signing of Peter Gavalas?
- Did the recruitment of Mbaka have anything to do with Genova International School of Soccer?
- Does the Club have a policy in place to attract a 'marquee player' through its connection to the Genova International Soccer School?
- Who was responsible for the signing of Andy Bevin and other mid-season signings last year?
- Why were player agents allowed into our change rooms after matches last year?
- Who is responsible for the management of our PPS tally?
- Has the club received compensation for the signing of Andy Brennan to Newcastle Jets?
- Did the club receive any compensation or fee for James Musa? If not, what was the nature of the two year contract the club (through its media channels) claimed he had signed?
- What was the rationale behind the unusually lengthy contract given to Chris Taylor?
- In what way does a 'senior football advisor' differ from an assistant coach?
Social club and lease
- Why has the club repeatedly refused to provide even cursory updates to the members about the status of this matter?
Real Madrid 'relationship'
- Last year the club made a big deal about establishing a relationship with Real Madrid, yet since then has provided no details to the members or anyone about what that entails. What is the actual story here?
- What is the connection between South Melbourne and Genova International Soccer School?
- What is the connection between South Melbourne and Morris Pagniello?
- Who paid for the Spain trip of January 2016? Did Genova or Morris Pagniello have any involvement with that trip? If so, what was the nature of that involvement?
Women and juniors
- If the women officially reunite with the men, will the club seek to join the WNPL?
- Should the women join the WNPL, will there be an establishment of a community club in order to maintain the female social players and juniors?
- If so, how would the club go about making sure that such a community club remain linked to South Melbourne FC, considering that the two entities can not share a committee?
- Four of our juniors - Andrew and Costa Mesorouni, Spiros Stamoulis and Josh Meaker, have reportedly signed contracts with overseas clubs. Why has the club made little effort to publicise these signings?
- Why did the club remove the article discussing Andrew Mesourouni's move to Spain from its website?
- Why did Strati Xynas, the new Technical Director, join the trip to Spain leaving behind a shortage of coaches for the rest of the junior teams not fortunate enough to attend?
- Is Strati also a GISS appointment?
- Does the club have plans to join the W-League?
- What are the club's plans in regards to joining the cut down version of the National Youth League?
Relationships and the future
- What is the status of the club's relationship with a) FFV b) FFA c) Victorian government d) State Sport Centres Trust e) other clubs both in the NPL and those outside of it?
- What is the relationship between Yarraville SC and South Melbourne? Are they affiliated to South?
- Is South Melbourne looking at entering into affiliations with other junior/lower level clubs around Melbourne/regional centres?
- Does the Genova International Soccer School have an exclusive arrangement with the club for future commercial junior player tours? Does this organisation have an exclusive arrangement with South Melbourne youth player transfers? If yes, what financial benefit is being paid to Genova International Soccer Schools?
- Since the club's ambition to takeover an A-League licence has failed, and considering that David Gallop and FFA have ruled out promotion and relegation for at least 20 years, what is the club's plan for getting back into the top flight? Does the club now think that any sort of accession to the top-flight is unrealistic?
- If it is not realistic, where does the club see itself in five years, ten years and 20 years time?
- If the club does believe that accession to the A-League is possible, what is the plan for achieving that goal?
- If it is based on promotion/relegation and/or a second division, why has the club only recently come out and made their position known on this?
- How hard is the club willing to push for a national second division and/or promotion and relegation? Is it willing to go above the FFA to the AFC?