Rival Fans: Why are Utd so unpopular?

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by Lentwood, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. Jan 7, 2017
    #1

    Lentwood Full Member

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    As a Utd fan growing up in Derby I was in a big minority at school, surrounded by match-going Forest and Derby supporters. Those who know the history behind these teams understand that they agree on two things - Brian Clough and that they hate Man Utd. Its the same anywhere you go, I have lived in Hull, Lincoln and now Manchester and the common theme wherever you go is that everybody bar Utd fans hate Man Utd! Most of these teams have no real reason to either, no geographical rivalry, no real historic bad blood or battles for trophies, in fact quite often very little relationship good or bad between the two sides. I have asked several of my closest non Man Utd supporting friends over the years "why exactly do you dislike Utd so much?" and none of them can really tell me much more than "they just do"

    I suspect some of this comes from our representation in the media. Historically, it would seem that (until recently with the likes of Scholes, Neville(s), Giggs, Hargreaves and Owen becoming more involved as pundits, the TV studios were dominated by former Liverpool players or players with reason to have bad feeling toward us (Shearer, Wright etc....) We are also unpopular in the tabloids with the papers liking nothing more than an opportunity to kick Utd or blow a minor hiccup up into a full blown crisis.

    I also think we may be unpopular because of our history of success, but Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and now City have all been through periods of success without the same ill-feeling. Surely as rival fans you would think that we at least have done things the "right" way, promoting Youth and English players wherever possible and contributing possibly more than any other clubs world class players to our National team (plus Wales, Ireland, Scotland and N Ireland) Our Academy is possibly the most prolific in the country with former Utd graduates at practically every single club in the country. We often loan these players out on favourable terms and i think we are a soft touch, rarely asking much of a fee in return for our carefully nurtured talents.

    The money is obviously another reason to dislike Utd - but the key point to make is that every single penny of our clubs money is self-generated. The Glazers have now proved themselves to be good owners but they have not actually put a penny in and saddled us with plenty of debt to fund their own ambitions. Unlike City, Chelsea and even teams like Leicester, we do not have a sugar-daddy who pumps in the cash whenever we need it. Surely, if i supported a rival club struggling at the foot of the PL or in the Championship i would be livid at the way otherwise unspectacular and undeserving clubs like Chelsea and City have artificially enjoyed success by winning the football lottery?

    I would like to invite non-Utd fans to put forward their arguments as to why they (and everybody!) really hate Man Utd. Its not a thread for me to refute these opinions and try to convert people, other than the few standard arguments and answers I have outlined above. Looking forward to hearing some thoughts!

    Like i say, i am predominantly interested in hearing from fans of rival clubs but anybody with any good theories please go ahead
  2. Jan 7, 2017
    #2

    izec Full Member

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    Trophies, money, stars, sexy football, sexy players, great badge, Sir Alex, history, myth, Old trafford. Pick one out or combine them.

    We are an elite club and made it. If you have success as long as we have and being the biggest club in England, people hate and envy us obviously.
  3. Jan 7, 2017
    #3

    2 Man Midfield Incestuous Modern Woman (Dumper!)

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    Jealousy basically
  4. Jan 7, 2017
    #4

    ADJUDICATOR FULL MEMBER

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    Do rival club fans in Spain similarly dislike Barcelona?
  5. Jan 8, 2017
    #5

    Sparky Rhiwabon Full Member

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    Thing I don't understand is that we made our money and success through decades of building the club (from nothing essentially), the way it's supposed to be done - a proper football club. I don't get why people don't hate the likes of City and Chelsea more - clubs who just had money pumped in and bought success. We have earned anything we have achieved, the same with Liverpool, Everton, Arsenal, Spurs, etc
  6. Jan 8, 2017
    #6

    Lentwood Full Member

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    Good post. This is what I want to understand. Lots of clubs are successful but not hated. I get that jealousy plays a part but i cannot understand the mentality of a fan of a rival club cheering for a City or a Chelsea over Utd.
  7. Jan 8, 2017
    #7

    carvajal Full Member

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    United are the most popular team in Uk, Madrid, Bayern and Juventus have the same problem.
  8. Jan 8, 2017
    #8

    Ryan Bobson New Member

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    United fans used to terrorise towns and citys in the 70s with the football specials . Thousands of Utd fans descending on away games causing mayhem , local shop keepers and pubs boarding their windows up and closing for the afternoon , United fans had a real bad name and a lot of resentment stems from this also.
  9. Jan 8, 2017
    #9

    Lentwood Full Member

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    @carvajal - am I right in thinking you are European? If so, what is the perception of Utd like on the Continent?

    From an outsiders perspective i can think of good reasons to dislike Real Madrid and Juventus (although I personally like both)

    Real were obviously the Kings team and were seen as a representation of the wealthy establishment. Often receiving special favours from the Government (the sale of their training ground to the Government and the lease) Juventus have obviously been involved in the match fixing scandal and also doping
  10. Jan 8, 2017
    #10

    Lentwood Full Member

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    Interesting theory. I have heard something similar from my Dad who has been a ST holder since the 70s. This may explain some of the resentment from older fans however i wonder whether this has filtered down to the younger generation?
  11. Jan 8, 2017
    #11

    Ibi Dreams Full Member

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  12. Jan 8, 2017
    #12

    Shady New Member

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    Not sure about Spain (think more people hate Real Madrid though), but I know many Germans and they either hate or support Bayern.
  13. Jan 8, 2017
    #13

    VeevaVee despite the protests, wears Ugg boots

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    I think it's just to do with being in front of everyone's faces for their whole lives coupled with the tribal factor. It kinda makes sense that if we aren't part of their gang but we're always shoved in their faces that they'll end up not really liking us.

    I think people also bought into the whole glory supporting bullshit a bit too well.
  14. Jan 8, 2017
    #14

    Oscie Full Member

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    Ultimately I think it's because we're the club that people who only have a slight/vague interest in football feel they have the most affinity to and I think that irks a lot of people. People who aren't fans of any one club usually look out for our result. We're the football club for people who don't like football. The housewives' favourite. I think much of that is a relatively modern phenomenon too. People will cite the Munich air disaster and subsequent 'romance' associated with how it was rebuilt by Busby. But I think being the only club pretty much on terrestrial TV in the 90s on ITV in the Champions League is more of a factor to our casual audience/fanbase today. Which, of course, is resented.
  15. Jan 8, 2017
    #15

    Ish Lights on for Luke

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    Success. Money. Envy. Jealousy.
  16. Jan 8, 2017
    #16

    carvajal Full Member

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    Outside England there is no negative perception. The first time I read English forums I did not understand what posters meant by plastic fans, or the jokes about most of the fans being from London.
    That's what happens with the followers of small teams that they consider to be more authentic than those of the big teams.
    Which is increased with the most popular team in the country, or the one with the most trophies.
    In Spain you are a Madrid fan and the rest are usually anti-madridistas.I guess that something similar happens in UK.
    For what I read and heard and about my friends United are considered one of the classic teams, and playing at Old Trafford was always considered as one of the most special visits for a Spanish team.
    Many times hatred is punctual and depends on a certain coach or player.
  17. Jan 8, 2017
    #17

    POF Full Member

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    It's because they won everything. Same with Liverpool in previous eras and someone like Steve Davis in snooker (that poor bugger was despised in the 80s).

    A dominant team/individual is loved by their supporters and hated by everyone else, especially in the UK.
  18. Jan 8, 2017
    #18

    stevoc Full Member

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    [​IMG]

    Mostly jealous of United's success but could be other reasons.

    It's not limited to just rival fans or even football fans. A few times over the years i've heard people say ''I have no interest in football but i hate United''. :houllier:
  19. Jan 8, 2017
    #19

    slir32 Full Member

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    It is because we are so successful and have won so much under SAF. Imagine following a team and you barely win anything but United wins trophy after trophy for decades.
  20. Jan 8, 2017
    #20

    JB08 Searches for nude pics of Marcos Rojo

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    A lot of rival fans I know said their hatred for us stemmed from Ferguson, though they can (especially recently with our post-Fergie troubles) accept just how good he was.
  21. Jan 8, 2017
    #21

    Bojan11 Full Member

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    Heard that most people in Spains besides the Basque area support two teams. One of them is Barca or Madrid.
  22. Jan 8, 2017
    #22

    SaintTresano Cartoon expert

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    When people hate United for whatever reason, any club who poses a threat for winning the league/cups is likely viewed as a breath of fresh air. The enemy of my enemy is my friend so to speak.
  23. Jan 8, 2017
    #23

    Ramshock The spacegoats did it

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  24. Jan 8, 2017
    #24

    Bepi Full Member

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    Don't believe the trash, you English had the coups and the heads rolling off the sword to settle power wars, we Italians had and still have smear, poison and defamation campaigns.
  25. Jan 8, 2017
    #25

    Welsh Wonder A dribbling mess on the sauce

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    Manchester United is a monster of a club. Everything about it - the historic and recent success, the money, the style, the arrogance that comes from the aforementioned and the way the club has been (brilliantly) presented and marketed to the world as an unstoppable, all conquering machine for the last 30 years or so. I'm not sure how people felt about us before that so wouldn't like to comment.

    It's really easy to see why we're hated so much :lol:
  26. Jan 8, 2017
    #26

    Eddy_JukeZ Full Member

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    Fans hate teams that are/were perennial winners.

    Same in every sport.
  27. Jan 8, 2017
    #27

    77 urinates in helmets

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    All the nouveau fans that came out of the woodwork when the trophies started rolling in. Frank the bus driver from next door is suddenly doing the weekly shopping in a United top with his own last name on the back, next he's winding you up because United beat your team, the local team.

    Fans like that.
  28. Jan 8, 2017
    #28

    Ryan Bobson New Member

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    I am 47 and have been a supporter since I was at junior school around the age of 7 , I think you younger guys don't realise that United were disliked well before the success of Fergies era . When Liverpool were dominant we still had the biggest crowd attendances in the league and even when we got relegated to the old second division our crowds were bigger than any club in the first division. We were always the biggest club in England badly run and structured at times before We got our act together.
    I think that we always have been seen as a Goliath and every David has wanted his pound of flesh off of us for decades , its all Ive ever known and long may it continue
  29. Jan 8, 2017
    #29

    The Purist Banned

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    As a rival fan:

    This is mostly the case from my experience. The majority of United fans I know disappeared for around 3 years and now they're back with fresh Pogba shirts winding on about how they knew Mourinho was 'destined' to manage 'the club he loves'. I don't hate the club necessarily. Contrarily, I think United are a decent model of self sufficiency and it is run the right way. The Class of 92 is a really nice story and unusual at this level of the game. I didn't enjoy Ferguson's manipulation of referees and definitely think you got the rub of the green to that end when our rivalry was at its fiercest but I understand that winning was all that mattered and playing to the referees in that regard is a way to win.

    Honestly, I see a lot of fans of teams like Spurs/Everton beginning to dislike United more in recent years. I was speaking to a Spurs fan during the Spurs/United game last season who was telling me he couldn't stand the romanticism of United in the media. For example, he remembered Sky had a 'Van Gaalacticos' promotional video and a general assumption that United were always in the title race each season even though every year since Ferguson left it's been pretty clear to everyone who isn't blinded by bias that United were worse than Spurs. Media acting like Spurs/Everton beating United or drawing with them was a huge deal etc. He had a point to be fair and I can see where he's coming from - but that is a temporary thing and the order of United being better than Spurs will soon be restored most likely (albeit I can't see it being this season!)
  30. Jan 8, 2017
    #30

    Trizy Full Member

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  31. Jan 8, 2017
    #31

    Infordin Full Member

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    In Spain, everyone has two clubs. One of them is either Madrid or Barcelona. You hate either one or the other.

    In Italy, you are either for Juventus or against them.

    Same with Bayern in Germany.

    Since no team has been able to get a stranglehold of the Prem since SAF retired, United are still seen as the biggest club and the perennial winners in England.

    Therefore you either love them or you hate them.
  32. Jan 8, 2017
    #32

    Lentwood Full Member

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    This I can definitely understand. There is no more annoying football fan than the bloke who dishes out the "banter" at work but has never been to a match or the bloke who is in his eyes an absolute expert and authority on football but can barely kick a ball himself
  33. Jan 8, 2017
    #33

    lsd Full Member

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    We are the Dallas Cowboys of football .. When people anywhere mention football they think about united whether they hate them love them they are the number one topic

    Same in American Football with the Cowboys and likewise both teams have the most fans in their sports both teams have fans from all over the world and in their rivals backyards to their annoyance .

    The media know to make people more likely take notice in a story the best way is to make it about utd or Dallas etc and as a result rival fans get more and more wound up as it's clear they will never be the main. story no matter what they do.

    To me it's interesting that this hatred isn't about winning it's about attention and the standing we have ..The past three years we haven't looked near a team that could win the league and conquer Europe . Yet we are still far and away the most hated .

    We could lose for twenty years and that wouldn't change rival fans would still take extra pleasure every time we fail .

    That's where the Dallas Cowboys similarities cone in again.. They have done very little since the 90s until this year oddly enough yet have still always been the most popular and most hated no matter who was winning the superbowl every year .

    That would be the same with us if we went that long without success and it wouldn't change even if City for example won ten leagues and bought every big player there was..

    It's not that we win it's that we matter more and that's what they can't handle or ever have .
  34. Jan 8, 2017
    #34

    AshfordLad Full Member

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    Simple, your traditional rivals (dippers and arsenal) have the biggest fan bases too so a lot of people hate united for that.

    Then there are other reasons like.

    This sort of petulant whining.
    Also for the people you meet in real life, a larger than average % of united fans seem to be genuine twats, the kind who have never been to a game at OT but try to pretend to have given their left nut for the club. This forum somehow seems to have very few of those.

    PS: I have always liked United, they are one of the teams I root for when my team is in the clear.
  35. Jan 8, 2017
    #35

    Lentwood Full Member

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    I understand both points. The 2nd point however, is a slightly tricky one because its kind of a self-fulfilling prophecy. There is no trophy awarded for finishing above Utd and you dont get double points against Utd. However, your post indicates that Spurs and Everton fans may be annoyed by not getting recognition for being better than Utd at certain points in PL history. But why should you? All this indicates is that while rival fans act like beating Utd matters so much the media will respond in kind and the circle will become more viscious
  36. Jan 8, 2017
    #36

    Needham Full Member

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    Don't know how old you are but Forest barely hate Utd. They can't stand Liverpool.
  37. Jan 8, 2017
    #37

    Lentwood Full Member

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    Good point. Our rivals tend to be well-supported so we are likely to have more enemies

    On the subject of this forum, i think the vetting process required to post on the main board probably helps weed out some of the worst examples of "fans" (Not that i have much against these people their Pogba shirts and Official Utd teapots pay for big money signings!)
  38. Jan 8, 2017
    #38

    Lentwood Full Member

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    I am 27 so was born in '89. I have been lucky enough to live through my team being dominant in England and very succesful in Europe so maybe the Forest fans I know are just representative of your typical younger ABU type fan

    Forest are still the first team i look out for as I was born in Jacksdale on the Nottingham-Derby border
  39. Jan 8, 2017
    #39

    Needham Full Member

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    Yeah, that'll be it, school kids reacting to whoever is number one at the time. The dislike of Liverpool goes back to the late seventies rivalry and other things, the perception of Liverpool fans' saintedness, etc.
  40. Jan 8, 2017
    #40

    Vanrouge Full Member

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    Not disagreeing with you at all, as your point is a good one, but your mentioning the Dallas Cowboys reminds me of a time when the late music writer Steven Wells (affectionately known as Swells) was discussing something with an American, and the topic moved on to what the American described as "the world-renowned Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders," and without missing a beat, Swells answered, "Yeah, in the fish-gutting sheds of Grimsby, they speak of little else." :lol: