FURIOUS Kidderminster Harriers supporters are threatening to boycott games and withdraw sponsorship after the club allowed a UKIP advert to be put up in the ground.

The club has come under fire after hiring out a hoarding, at the ‘Town End’ of Aggborough stadium, to the right-wing political party for its campaign purposes.

Long-time fan Karl Davies immediately cancelled his player sponsorship of Harriers’ winger Ahmed Obeng and stepped down from his role as press officer for the Kidderminster Harriers Independent Supporters’ Trust (KHIST).

Wyre Forest Labour councillor Adrian Sewell, who is a Harriers’ season-ticket holder has been a regular at Aggborough 45 years, has now boycotted matches until the advert is removed.

And Liberal Councillor Fran Oborski, who also sponsors a player, has written to the club voicing her concerns.

Mr Davies told The Shuttle: “I’m gobsmacked that it has come to this. The club has brought politics into football and, for me, this is an appalling decision. Football should be apolitical.

“The club has told me they stand by their decision and if they want to accept UKIP’s money, then fine. But I think this is the wrong decision.

“I will continue to go to games but I am not prepared to support the club commercially so have cancelled my sponsorship of Ahmed Obeng. This is not a decision I have taken lightly and I have nothing against the player. I will contact him to explain my decision.

“I have also stepped down from my role with KHIST so I don’t compromise their work with my views on this.”

Councillor Sewell added: “I find the club’s decision astonishing and very short-sighted. It is unheard of for a football club to accept political advertising at their ground.

“The club argues that it is no different to MP Mark Garnier having a regular advert in the programme but that is not the same as he is providing contact details for constituents to get in touch with their elected MP.

“I would argue against my own party doing this and I won’t go back until it is gone.”

But Councillor Michael Wrench, leader of Wyre Forest UKIP, said: “This is a business transaction in which we are simply supporting the local community we have been democratically elected to serve.

“The season has only just begun and there were empty advertising boards there so we thought why not? It is a little out of the ordinary but other political parties are free to do the same.

“They are saying football should be apolitical but they are the ones trying to make a political point because we are the new kid on the block and the landscape is changing. Other parties already advertise at the club, through player sponsorship and in the programme so how is this different?

“I think this reaction is very childish and if they want to support the club they should put their money where their mouth is and do it.”

In a response to complainants, the club said: “The offer is open to all. UKIP contacted the club, not visa versa, and a deal was agreed. We are completely impartial and treat all the same.”