Fulham Launch New Website

Monday 13 August 2001

Fulham Chairman Mohamed Al Fayed has backed his Club's New Media ambitions with the launch a new-look Official Website.

The new site went live shortly before midnight on Monday, in time for the teams big Premiership kick-off on Sunday at Old Trafford, Manchester.

The launch, the first of two phases over the next few days, sees many new features added to the already hugely successful website and came as a relief to Internet Manager Paul Thorpe who commented.

"Three months of development, planning and hard work have gone in to the new site. As soon as the final whistle went last season Dominic and I, along with the team at Liquorice started work. We've only just made the deadline, and it's a huge relief to all of us.

"I sincerely hope the supporters will enjoy what they find and embrace it like they have our previous efforts. The Chairman has been his usual supportive self and the fans have him to thank for what they see."

Thorpe also revealed that Fulham will be the first Club to treat their homepage as a daily newspaper explaining;

"We wanted to give the Supporters, the Chairman and the Board something a bit different from the usual thing you see around other football websites. We already had a winning formula so coming up with something to beat that wasn't easy.

"We came up with the 'Fulham Today' concept for the homepage. After all, the news section is a news service, and from now it will be treated more like a daily newspaper than the front page of just another website."

Thorpe believes the concept of launching the Club's own 'electronic newspaper' will lead the Cottagers new media empire into a league of its own.

"Taking it to the extreme, Fulham Today might require its own team of journalists at some stage in the future. Who knows how big it can become? I believe we've delivered a tangible asset to the Club with this introduction."

He added however, that a mixed reaction is expected from the Club's supporters, at least for a while.

"From experience I know that people aren't big on change. You get used to the status quo and become comfortable with that. Change is sometimes looked upon as being unnecessary or unwanted.

"However, the new site is technically miles in front of the old one and I hope that once the supporters start to feel their way around, they'll appreciate what's gone in at the back end to create it."

Juliet Slot, the Club's Sales and Marketing Director is also delighted to see the launch take place, just in time for the new season adding:

"We are extremely proud to present our new website which we believe takes website design, usability and content to a new level, not only for Football but for the industry.

"The website plays a central role in communicating to our fans both existing and new, in the UK and abroad and it is a key channel for the development of the brand of Fulham Football Club.

"Paul, Dominic and Liquorice-e have surpassed themselves in pulling this together and we all hope you enjoy it and the exciting news and information we will put on it next season. A Premiership site for the new boys on the Premiership ladder."

The Club also revealed that a second phase of the re-launch will take place next week when online betting, exclusive mobile telephone services, and other top features will be made live and available to Whites fans across the globe. And if you cannot speak English, then Fulham have also taken care of that by making their new website available in other languages as Thorpe went on to explain:

"Fulham are a world famous club with a world wide following. We wanted to make it clear to our non English supporters that we appreciate their support and loyalty to the club.

"What better way to do this than to offer them as much information about the club and its players in the language they are most comfortable with - their own.

"Working in association with WorldLingo has made it easy for us to make our news stories available in 9 different languages."

The Club's Managing Director Michael Fiddy stated:

It is hugely important that Fulham Football Club remains consistent with its progressive and stylish values in every area of the Club's operation.

"Our internet site is a vital means of communication, for both information and entertainment, not only to our fans but to a global audience. Subsequently it is of paramount importance that we provide a service that continues to set the standard for other football clubs to follow.

"With the re-launched website, I firmly believe that we have achieved this."

MAIN FEATURES OF FULHAM'S NEW WESBITE

New Newspaper style homepage

Easier navigation including related stories links

News archive (Phase 2)

New search facility

New sign up facility / register with Fulham FC

Month by month news browsing

Better imagery

New message board with better viewing options

New match reports section

New squad profile section

New in Reserve section

New Fulham Ladies section and player profiles

New and updated Academy section

New and updated history section with stats going back to the start of the century

Pictorial memory lane

New away day guide

New visitors guide

New local area guide

New disabled supporters features including LARGE FONT capability

New match commentary section

New Website contributors section includes: Mullery, Gale, Fulham Dave, Jim McGullion and Roger Smith

SMS services

Ring Tones & Icons (Phase 2)

New Club Directory / many new features

New Community pages

New feature, FULHAM FANS (You're the stars)

Group Links

Site history

Spot the Ball

Sunday League

New games zone

SW6 Survey

New voting booth

Empics / Images online

Programme Master

Online Betting (Phase 2)

Website now available in 9 different languages

Club Net revamped for the Premiership

Pay-Per-View for home and away fans at 15p per minute

New online store (Phase 2)

PLUS the usual features...