David Moffett, the Chief Executive of the Welsh Rugby Union

Putting the record straight over the demise of the Celtic Warriors

The dislike for me over the Warriors continues to be argued using half- truths and misinformation. Here are the facts, like them or not.
1. Leighton Samuel approached me to say he wanted out as he could no longer sustain the losses of £1 million a year. (Remember what happened with his RL team)
2. Pontypridd had been declared bankrupt and with the exception of 2/3 matches their supporters did not follow the Warriors in sufficient numbers and LS moved all games to the Brewery Field.
3. Neither I nor the WRU made any promise to continue with the Warriors.
4. I was expected by the remaining Warriors fans (approx. 2,500 regularly attended matches) to commit the WRU to on-going losses of £1 million plus per year.
5. I was not prepared to do that and recommended to the Board that the Warriors be closed down. The Board voted unanimously including those that are still there from the Region affected.
6. There is no way I was prepared to put the Board or myself at risk of being prosecuted of entering into financial arrangements knowing we could not meet our financial obligations.
7. This was in an environment where the WRU had been left on the edge of bankruptcy and technically insolvent by the Board prior to my arrival.
8. 10 members of that Board are still there and have been rewarded with an extra 10 year’s service with no accountability for their actions. I saved their jobs and reputations.
9. The Chairman, in particular has recently sought to take all the credit for the rescue, in a letter to clubs. He was on the Board for 5 years before my arrival and did nothing. He was not even aware of the size of the problem.
If there are any clubs, Chairmen or Secretaries out there who would have behaved differently and would have put themselves and the Union at risk, will they please have the courage to publicly say so.

2 thoughts on “Putting the record straight over the demise of the Celtic Warriors”

  1. David,

    1) Why did Leighton Samuels begin proceedings against the WRU in the High Court?
    2) Why did the WRU settle out of court if they had nothing to hide?
    3) Why wasn’t the WRU open and honest with players and supporters?
    4) Why weren’t those at the WRU held accountable when you were CEO?
    5) Wasn’t it your responsibility to ensure that there was a feasible business model in place before forcing implementation of so called ‘regional’ rugby?
    6) Wasn’t it also your responsibility to minimise the impact of any failure?

    The introduction of regional rugby was shambolic and its fallout was very badly managed yet you are blaming others while taking no responsibility yourself. When you demand forgiveness from that those who lost out, you demonstrate the same lack of empathy that got us into this mess in the first place. You need to accept that your previous actions make you toxic to many and threaten to taint the genuinely valuable issues that you’re raising. We really should be talking about a way forward but your personal involvement forces us to go over old ground again and again. If you really want to help, step aside and seperate the message from the man.

  2. I am a Bridgend and ex-Warriors supporter, and as much as I hated what happened then, in hindsight it was the right decision.
    It is time to move on (and has been for a few years now).

    Let’s fight today’s battles not yesterday’s!

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