Tuesday, January 23, 2007

It Is Time To Lower Season Ticket Prices

As average crowds at our Club continue to fall for the third season running, many supporters have called for season ticket price reductions. Our Club have arranged the occasional one off reduction like the recent Sheffield Wednesday FA Cup replay game and this weekends FA Cup game but have fallen short of taking the bold step of reducing season ticket prices.

Season ticket prices are one of the reasons why fans are deserting our Club, other reasons include the standard of football, games moving to suit TV schedules, lack of atmosphere and the lack of a real hero to cheer on. As mentioned season ticket prices are just one issue but with the money through the turnstiles not as important as in previous years and the new TV money due from next season, we have felt for a long time that our Club should take the lead and reduce season ticket prices for all.

We first published an article on this on 7 January 2007 which you can read here We strongly believe that a club as great as ours should do all that it can to encourage supporters to come to games and season ticket prices is a start. At the moment our average gate is 38,881, last season it was 42,856 and the season before that 45,192.

Dropping season ticket prices may have many positive knock on effects. Not only might it encourage supporters to renew for next season, it might also encourage lapsed season ticket holders to come back. The lapsed season ticket holder is undoubtedly a problem, many long term season ticket holders have given up or are currently deciding whether or not to renew. We have received many e-mails from supporters who are in this position and it is disheartening to hear from a season ticket holder who after many many years has decided to walk away from the Club they love unconditionally, we want and need those supporters back at the games.

Any supporters who come back to the games or indeed any new season ticket holders that a lower season ticket price might attract would bring with them additional revenue to spend in the stadium or the club shop. With a higher gate it might also help the atmosphere which is in need of a boost.

A higher gate might also help our manager, not necessarily from a finance perspective but from a "selling the club" perspective. If season ticket prices dropped to such a level whereby the stadium was full for most matches, it would make Stuart Pearce's chances of selling the club that much easier. It could just swing a signing in our favour. A young up and coming striker has the option of coming to City or going elsewhere, the wages and other perks are the same which does he choose? The team playing to a packed house or the team playing in front of a three quarter full stadium?

Today, we were delighted to read Chris Bailey's article in the Manchester Evening News which continues on this theme, you can read it here

In addition to Chris Bailey's article, there is also mention made of a campaign called "Make It Fair For Fans: MEN Sport Campaign" if this is a bona fides campaign set up to tackle this important issue, then we wholeheartedly support it, we hope you do to.

Please send us your feedback, comments or input to mcfcsupporters@hotmail.co.uk


At 10:20 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Couldnt agree less. The prices are already far too cheap in such a competitive environment as the Premiership. Remember the terms of the lease with the Council require rent to be paid only where crowds exceed those at Maine Road. It is far more profitable for the club to have 34,000 paying £40 per game than a sell out at £30. Profit is key if we are to compete for players other than the Corradis, the Bosmans and the Hammans of this world. We must start generating profits of £10-15m pre-transfers if we are to produce an exciting product on the field. A strong product on the pitch will fill the stadium not cheap prices in days where average London prices are £50 per seat.

At 11:53 am, Blogger James said...

Couldn't agree more. I gave up my season ticket, sorry seasoncard, this year because of a combination of long journeys and awkward kick-off times and dates. I still try and make it to all the Saturday 3PM games but these are becoming rather thin on the ground.

One idea I would sign up to is a mini-season ticket where, say, I am guaranteed 9 tickets for the price of 8 but I can pick and choose which games I go to. If I don't use up my allocation then that's my choice and I lose them and the club makes some money that way.

Having the stadium full or near to capacity is worth another six or seven points a season I reckon. The team will feed on the crowd and vice versa. However, we have to be entertained during the match and - this is important I believe - not before it or at half-time.

Please turn off the godawful music and the blaring and constant tannoy announcements. Let the atmosphere build in the stadium before the game. Remember how it used to work? The away fans would turn up and start singing half an hour before the game. The home fans would respond.

OK, this wouldn't work when Fulham bring their statutory 200 fans but I think fans of most teams enjoy a bit of banter and that is impossible when you are being drowned out by noise. Also, it may need the re-legalisation of drinking in view of the pitch to encourage fans back out of the concourse. Anyone who has been to a game in Denmark or other enlightened European countries knows they allow you to drink in your seat. So why can't we?

And I am a supporter of giving away teams two points for a score draw. They may try and cross the halfway line a bit more and encourage open play and entertain us. Should that happen, I may even be encouraged to come and see the visit of Bolton!

At 12:39 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi I am a City supporter with two season tickets from Dublin. Apart from costs my main issue is the change in ko times. from 3pm and from Sat to Sun if we are on tv or we are playing a team who are competing in Europe. Impossible to plan journeys and it reduces the number of games I can get to making the season ticket very expensive. Only solution would be if we could through the club sell our seats for games we cannot attend and credit our account for the following years tickets. Bryan


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