Look out for this symbol in shop windows around Charlton this weekend – football fans are being urged to use local shops and pubs today instead of using facilities at The Valley as protests against absentee Charlton Athletic owner Roland Duchâtelet continue.
The Coalition Against Roland Duchâtelet want the Belgian, who has not attended a match since October 2014, to suffer as much financial damage as possible in protest at his stewardship of the side, which is almost certain to be relegated to League One.
The Addicks face Derby County at home at 3pm, and fans of both clubs are being urged to use local outlets to put a financial squeeze on the unpopular owner.
“Throughout this week, CARD has been talking to local pubs, takeaways, newsagents and more, and encouraging them to display special endorsement posters in the windows of their stores,” the group says.
“Now it’s your turn. We want you to use those local companies prior to the Derby game. We want you tell the shopkeepers and till operators why you are spending money in their stores.
“Unlike Roland Duchâtelet’s current regime, these local businesses are here for Charlton supporters for the long term. We’re asking you to support them, and in the process hit the regime financially and put pressure on its relationships with business partners.”
Fans are asked to highlight their boycott on social media with the hashtag #cafcboycott.
Recent weeks have seen matches interrupted by fans throwing beach balls and stress balls onto the pitch. There has also been a mock funeral procession while unofficial match programmes have also been handed out.
Now, inspired by Duchâtelet’s chief executive Katrien Meire taking a 10-day holiday to Dubai instead of overseeing the struggling side’s loss to QPR last weekend, CARD has decided to hold a “beach party” outside The Valley at 1.30pm.
There are two more home matches left this season, with CARD promising “a big protest party” ahead of next Saturday’s match against Brighton & Hove Albion.
Charlton fans have raised more than £20,000 to fund their campaign to force Duchâtelet out, with a protest song, More Than Just A Toy, released last Monday. It’s available via Bandcamp with all profits going to the protest fund.