Open letter to MLSZ

An open letter to MLSZ.  I hope it is self-explanatory.  I doubt that they will respond.

______

To: mlsz@mlsz.hu, press@mlsz.hu

Subject:  MTK-Ujpest match

 

Dear Sir/Madam,

May I first of all apologise for not being able to write in Hungarian.  I hope that you can understand my letter below.  If not, please tell me an I can have the letter translated into Hungarian.

I am big football fan and I generally love going to watch Hungarian football matches.  I have write a popular football blog about my ‘adventures’ watching Hungarian football.  Please feel free to read it (https://timmybacsi.wordpress.com/).  I hope that I can help popularise Hungarian football as I have many readers both in and outside Hungary.DSC_0601

I attended tonight’s MTK-Ujpest match.  Unfortunately, it was a disappointing match both in terms of quality and also the result (I am an MTK fan).  It was also disappointing for certain reasons off the pitch also.

First and foremost, I had several friends who were eager to watch the game having flown from the UK to come to Budapest for the weekend.  It was impossible for me to buy tickets because I was unable to obtain szurkoloi kartya for them before the game.  As such it was not possible to buy tickets before the game and as there were no tickets available on the day of the game, they were unable to attend.  (They decided to watch English football in the pub instead.)  This is not the first time this has happened as I met at least 30 foreigners stranded outside the MTK-Ferencvaros game for a similar reason.  In turn, every time that I watch MTK away from home, I have a long and frustrating discussion to persuade the ticket seller that foreigners do not need a szurkoloi kartya.

Secondly (and most importantly), MTK fans were forced to remain inside the stadium for 35 minutes after the final whistle because it was not safe for them.  Apparently, this is MLSZ policy.  I am not sure whether anyone from MLSZ has ever been to an MTK game, but the majority of the fans consist of old men and young families.  (I am happy to send you pictures of the fans waiting to be freed at the end of the game if you would like confirmation of this.)  We were told it was for our own safety.  I am not certain of Hungarian law, but I am fairly sure that it is illegal to imprison a person for their own safety.  We were told on numerous occasions that it would be too dangerous for us to leave.  We told the security people that we were happy to take this risk (given that I was there with my girlfriend and we were not wearing MTK colours).  They refused to ‘release’ us (strangely whenever we have watched MTK in Pecs, Kecskement, Felcsut and Gyor we have always been released at the same time as the home) fans.  We even met some more foreigners who had booked a taxi to take them straight to the airport.  They were also not ‘released’ and I hope that they were able to get their flight.  I assume that MLSZ is responsible for the health of Hungarian football.  In no way is stopping families from going home on a cold Sunday night good for Hungarian football especially when the security refuse the waiting public to take pictures of the pitch they had just watched a game upon.  Next time these people think about coming to watch football, they will probably (like my friends) opt for the warmth of their homes and watch English football on television.  Given that we were told that we were retained in the stadium for security reasons, it was strange that some 20 Ujpest fans could be heard singing ‘Szep volt fiuk’ (“Well played boys”) at the end of the game without a) being attacked and b) being asked to leave the MTK section.  I wonder indeed how they got tickets in the first place given that many MTK fans no longer attend game for being unable to obtain a szurkoloi kartya.  (Something similar occurred in Felcsut when MLSZ forced MTK to play Honved there and some hundred or so Honved fans were sitting in the MTK section without any questions being asked by security.)

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Hungarian football as a spectator sport is dying.  Football fans are treated like criminals.  The football fans that are criminals are allowed to dominate the game.  The szurkoloi kartyai system does not work at stopping the hooligan element (please come and watch any Fradi-MTK game and listen to the anti-Semitism (and signs to disgraced war criminals i.e. Csatary Laszlo)) to see that it is not working.  The only way the szurkoloi kartya works is to stop general football fans from leaving their homes and coming to the stadiums.DSC_0598

I am more than happy to help Hungarian football in anyway I can.  I want Hungarian football to be successful and well supported, respected in Western Europe, not ridiculed for its links to corruption and remembered only for its glorious past.

I really look forward to your response.

Tim

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