Sheffield Steelers boss Tony Smith rants at fans who think he is a “waste of time”

Sheffield Steelers owner Tony Smith has delivered an icy blast to fans who have criticised him despite spending "many hundreds of thousands of pounds" on the club.

Sunday, 7th April 2019, 3:23 pm
Updated Sunday, 7th April 2019, 6:22 pm
Tony Smith , right, with outgoing coach Tom Barrasso

Some supporters are pointing the finger after a poor showing in the league - the side ended seventh.

Smith says he has been hurt by accusations after almost a decade turning the club around.

"Recently I seem to have taken quite a lot of stick from a small minority of our fans regarding the way we run the business” he said.

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"I have never shied away from any questions about the business or the way we run things."

He invited fans to come to a meeting in Sheffield on April 16 and "ask me why we have had the worst finish ever, ask me why I don't invest in the team but prefer to spend on a new store inside the Arena. Or even why we don't have a General Manager, because that is apparently why we are not in the top two of the league?

"If I sound a little annoyed, I'm sorry but my family and I have put eight years of our lives into this club.

“We took it when it was a mess and had no money, no fans (1,800 at our first game) and 750 season tickets to honour” he wrote in Saturday's match night programme.

"We took it knowing it was going to take years to turn it around and many of hundreds of thousands of pounds to bring it back from the brink, so receiving a few emails and comments recently has hurt.

"So come along and spit it out - tell me what an absolute waste of time I am and how I should let new owners in who have the vision to take us forward.

"I'll assume if you don't turn up, for now, I have your permission to carry on..

"Sorry for the rant but we really have to come together as one so we can move into the next phase of our recovery."