Many clubs in the Premier League are now in control of rich business owners. While this hasn't proved troublesome for the likes of Manchester City and Newcastle United, the latter being nearly completely cleared of all debts, it has spelled the opposite at other, less fortunate clubs.
Portsmouth, who have recently hit the headlines after falling into administration for the second time in three years, were once ran by a careless businessman who funded inefficiently into the club. In an effort to sign star players for the short-term, they promised to pay the selling club money that they didn't have; often resulting in having to take loans from the bank. In some cases, Pompey assured them that they would pay in installments, which may have taken the bank loans out of the frame but put the long-term future of the club in crisis.
And crisis it was. After their first stint in administration, the club could only showcase a grand total of fourteen players, which isn't even enough to fill up their bench. Throughout the 2010-11 season, Portsmouth had to introduce several youth players into the line-up, and while they may have steered clear of relegation, the fans looked on with uncertainty as the circumstances at the club didn't look like they would bode well for the next few seasons.
That was exactly what has happened, with the club straight back into administration and lingering at the bottom of the table. Chances are, they could fall farther beyond Plymouth have and possibly in faster time too.
In contrast, clubs that are ran by fans, be it businessmen or just a trust fund, often find themselves in better situations, both on and off the pitch. Barcelona, one of the most decorated teams in Europe and the only team to have won the sextuple, are owned and operated by its supporters. In terms of revenue, the club are the second-richest in the world with a turnover of €398,000,000 per year.
Likewise, Norwich City's board of directors are almost entirely composed of investors and businessmen who follow the club with a passion, such as Delia Smith and Stephen Fry.
While this isn't a necessity at the moment for most non-fan owned clubs, there are definitely a few that really should consider a change at the top of the hierarchy. Blackburn, who have found themselves in dire straits with their foreign owners, and Manchester United, whose owners are incredibly unpopular with the fans and have plunged the club deep into the red, both need to transfer ownership to the fans as it may be the only way to stop an almost inevitable decline.