NORTHWICH Victoria owner Jim Rushe denies he took part in Saturday’s protest by the club’s fans after holding aloft a red card while they demonstrated.
He told the Guardian on Monday that the gesture was his way of showing what he thought of supporters calling for change in the way their favourite club has been run in recent years.
“It was my way of protesting against the protest. I wasn't showing myself a red card,” said Mr Rushe.
“Some people were chanting for me to go, others simply for change.
“There were people openly shouting their support for me as well, which was heartening to hear.”
Northwich fans held high pieces of coloured paper to show their anger at how the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League outfit, expelled from the competition last week, has been managed over the past decade.
Followers of their opponents and hosts, FC United of Manchester, sang their support during the contest at Bury’s Gigg Lane.
Mr Rushe, sat metres away from fans of his club, responded by taking a piece red card from his pocket and waving his while they did.
He had earlier repeated the gesture before the game while stood pitch side.
“The messages were noted. I listened, but I'm no wiser as to what the majority of protesting fans actually want,” he added.
“What was the message? I spoke to FC United fans outside of the ground who didn’t have a clue why they had a card to hold.”
Mr Rushe will be at Wembley tomorrow morning, Tuesday, to represent the club at an appeal against its expulsion from the Northern Premier League.
League bosses found the Wincham outfit guilty of breaking finance rules, and failing to admit that it had, at a disciplinary hearing earlier this month.
The team, which has finished second in the Premier Division table behind Cheshire neighbours Chester, has been banned from taking part in the promotion play-offs as part of the club’s punishment.