Does The English Premier League Really Need Fans In The Stadium?

“Football with out fans will not behing,” goes the quote from the legendary Celtic manager Jock Stein. Few would argue with him. Anybody who had the misfortune to sit through England’s current 0-zero draw with Croatia will probably be acutely aware of this: the game was played behind closed doors as a result of sanctions towards Croatian fans and thus possessed an atmosphere more akin to a morgue than to a major sporting event.

While the importance of football fans to the game is clear, it might not truly be that relevant to the clubs themselves. Despite the platitudes handed out by managers, gamers and administrator, the financial impact of supporters passing by way of turnstiles, buying merchandise and food and generally being current at the event is ever-decreasing as television money becomes the driver behind income. It begs the question of whether or not fans are literally mandatory in any respect for clubs to make money. In accordance with the balance sheets of half the English Premier League (EPL), they aren’t at all.

The cost of football, and the perceived rise in it, is a continuing bugbear for fans. Ticket prices have grown exponentially for fans, and even factoring in varied worth freezes put in place throughout the leagues and caps on the price of away supporter tickets. MyVoucherCodes helpfully compiled the information on this compared season ticket prices and single ticket costs across Europe’s 5 biggest leagues, with the (admittedly pretty obvious) outcomes that the UK is by far the most expensive place to observe football.

An average season ticket is £516 and a median single match £28.50, far outstripping say, the German Bundesliga, which averages £159 for a season and £13 per game. Bayern Munich, who frequently sell out their Allianz Area stadium charge just £one hundred twenty five for a standing season ticket behind the goals. Famously, their club president Uli Hoeneß has mentioned that compare liverpool fc tickets Bayern “don’t think the fans are like cows to be milked. Football has bought to be for eachbody. That’s the largest distinction between us and England.” This isn’t restricted to the highest leagues, both: the cheapest common season ticket in the whole English league system, at Charlton Athletic, is still more costly than watching Bayern Munich or Barcelona.

The bigger query about who football is for has been performed to death, and the reply that almost all have come to is that it is not for the working classes. Chelsea FC blogger Tim Rolls has extensively charted the rising prices at his club in opposition to the average weekly wage of someone in London, finding that in 1960, tickets at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge price 1% of the typical weekly wage, which rose to virtually three% by 1990 and in 2010 stood at 10%.

While clubs have carried out a league-huge £30 value cap for away fans, there aren’t any limits to what they’ll cost their very own supporters.

“My dwelling season ticket prices £880 for 19 Premier League games,” says Tim of the costs at present at Chelsea. “I’m additionally an away season-ticket holder and the 19 away tickets cost me £560 (the £30 value cap is beneficial right here), plus Southampton give an additional £10 off as a part of their sponsorship take care of Virgin Media. So PL tickets cost £1,440 a season.”

“I reckon my away journey probably costs round £900 p.a., which assumes no in a single day stops. Chelsea do run backed £10 coaches to all away games outside London and £10 trains when there is no such thing as a suitable service train, although the supply of those will depend on the not-very-useful train companies. My travel to home games is free as I’m over 60, otherwise it will in all probability price around £250.”

If the core constituency of the English game is not the working class, then it begs the question of who it’s for. The answer to that’s, evidently, the TV audiences at residence, who fund nearly all of the sport through Pay TV subscriptions and the advertising revenue derived from the ability to market directly to them. This is replicated in club funds across almost all ranges: Manchester United derive 20% of their earnings from matchday revenue – a summation of ticket costs, hospitality and food/beverage – while round twice that comes from TV and but more from industrial deals.