The Japan Wolves Independent Supporters Group website and blog is brought to you by J-Wolf, a fan originally from Dudley in the West Midlands of England. Based in Fukuoka City on Japan’s westernmost main island of Kyushu, the group is the result of almost twenty years of following Wolves from Japan where I was often asked ‘When are you going to set up Japan Wolves?’ Well, here we are. We are Japan Wolves ISG.
On 13 June 2018, I decided to start Japan Wolves Supporters club and spread the word of Wolves in Japan. We quickly attracted a small core of English fans who live in Kyushu and then members of a Japanese futsal club decided to come on board. However, with the advent of Worldwide Wolves being set up by WWFC our supporters club held a meeting on 20 October 2018 and decided not to participate in the official clubs organisation. The reasons for this are quite complex but stem from the majority of our group believing in the spirit of free and independent, grassroots supporters clubs and individual voluntary association. Before Wolves launched ‘Worldwide Wolves’ we were happy to have our club listed on the official club website because it meant that people in Japan/Fukuoka could easily find us. However, when the Japan Wolves Supporters Club link was removed without any notification and a notice posted requesting supporters clubs to ‘apply’ to be officially recognized by the club, along with ‘guidelines’ as to how WWFC expects the supporters clubs to operate this prompted real concerns for us. When our supporters club was founded I wrote
While it is a pleasure to see Wolves embracing an internationalist approach to the game, Wolves are now owned by an international investment company and so fans are presented with different issues to address. Whose club is it? What kind of internationalism is this? What is football about? Do the fans really have a say? Are fans expected to be passive and at the same time passionate consumers of modern gladiatorial contests?
The club and blog was set up for Wolves fans in Japan and around the world who love the game and the ordinary things that go along with it. In other words, it was set up for fans who appreciate football and who have an affinity with Wolves but who nevertheless reserve the right to organise as they please with full freedom of expression. Whenever corporate interests are involved that right becomes arrogated to a greater or lesser extent, despite the best intentions of everyone involved. Our club was set up for people who can do without all the fancy corporate trappings. Hence our decision to become an independent supporters group with a fully democratic, horizontal structure. And so here we are.
While the main pages of the site are informational and the Japanese language page is designed for Japanese people to learn about Wolves, the blog is where you can find my views on much more than Wolves FC. There will be stuff for Wolves fans interested in finding out about football in Japan, but also posts on the importance of football in society and the roles that fans have played at different clubs and in different countries in influencing the development of the game. It’s also for the footballers, who are living our dreams.
Anyway! I hope you find something interesting here.
Up the Wolves!
J-Wolf, ay it?