‘Clubs are nothing without fans’ and ‘Good Bye’ are a common sign board seen this season in the ongoing Barclays Premier League matches. Premier League has always been known for its standard of football and the high ticket prices to watch the match live in the club stadium.
The 2014/15 season marked a record level of occupancy in Premier League grounds, with 95.9% of tickets available sold over 380 matches of the campaign. It also marked the third season in a row in which the occupancy exceeded 95%.
I have analysed the most commonly paid price for tickets, in other words, what the typical cost is for fans attending to the game. Given some of the misleading ‘averages’ and quoting of the highest prices paid, I think many will be surprised by the value clubs offer to fans.
What is clear from our analysis is that those who attend Premier League football most often, that is, the 66% of match attenders who are season ticket holders, are getting some excellent value from their clubs with an average of less than £33 per match.
Arguably, the clubs say that we can only reduce the prices for the home games, but the visiting games prices are set by the other clubs. This is not true. The governing council clearly states that 42% of the ticket margin goes to the visiting team. From which, they manage their travel and miscellaneous expenses.
The record price hike took place in a derby match between Manchester United and City last year. The price for a single ticket went up to GBP 110.
Stoke City, another English Premier League club took a very strong stance considering the population of their county. Children under the age of 11 could pay £2 a match for a season ticket at Stoke, while it rose to £8.90 for under-17s. It is representative of a policy at the heart of the club’s commitment to young fans. Importantly, 25% of the crowd are under the age of 21, delivering the support base of the future.
This is the first time in history that we are witnessing fans complaining about football tickets prices and considering that these are the literal ‘die-hard’ fans of their respective clubs, it is very disheartening and overwhelming to see that money has taken over the game so fast, after all.