ATTEMPTING TO BRING TICKET PRICES DOWNWith the 20 Premier League shareholder clubs preparing to meet next week the Supporters Direct Premier League Trusts have written to their respective CEOs on ticket pricing.
The letter is as follows
“At a meeting of all Premier League clubs in March 2015 it was agreed that a total of at least £1billion from the total £5.14bn sale of UK live rights will be shared beyond the Premier League in the 2016/17-2018/19 period. This would include investing in ‘Fan engagement and match-day experience’.
We welcome this and thank you for backing this policy. We are writing to you now, ahead of the next Premier League shareholders meeting, to ask you to back a simple and effective proposal that delivers on this commitment.
We have discussed these ideas with other Premier League Supporters’ Trusts Groups who are also writing to their Clubs. Our proposal is that a portion of the new TV money should be used to secure the following benefits for all match-going fans across the game:
• A freeze on all ticket prices in all categories for the three years of the new tv contract
• New money to be set aside to allocate every club a £1m per season Away Supporter’s Initiative fund, an end to away match categorisation and a cap on away ticket prices
• Price reductions for 18-21-year-old fans – the future generation of supporters
There are other initiatives and promotions run by Clubs which offer benefits and we hope these will continue but we believe there is merit in having three main policy ideas that are applied across all Clubs in the Premier League so that everyone benefits.
We are asking you to table the proposal we have set out above at the next PL shareholders’ meeting and to vote in favour of that proposal. Each PL club is being asked to do this by their supporters.
The cost of football tickets has been keenly and publicly debated for some time, and we believe you have the opportunity to take practical action to address supporter concerns and send out a positive message about the responsible way the Premier League is utilising the additional TV windfall to engage with supporters and invest in the long-term future of the game.
We have given careful thought to these ideas and the areas we highlight for support - away fans and younger adult fans - are two categories we believe merit extra attention as they are key to the future social and economic health of the game.
Away fans are vital to the atmosphere and experience every fan attending a game enjoys. They bring the tribalism and sense of contest that so enhances the TV pictures beamed around the world.
The Away Supporters Initiative, where the clubs unilaterally agreed to ringfence £200k each per season for the away fan experience, shows it is possible to take the sort of step we are proposing.
Young fans are the future of the game. They are also very likely to be amongst those fans who are the loudest and most vocal at games. Yet as ever more young people are in full time education or lower paid employment it is important more focus is giving to making football affordable for them.
The proposal for a general price freeze would ensure benefit filters through to all fans. With every club in the Premier league expecting an additional income stream of at least £45m per season from the new domestic TV deal as well as increasing revenue from overseas rights it is a policy that can well be afforded and would generate much goodwill for Clubs and the league.
We do hope you will be able to support these measures. We are committed to assisting you uphold the commitment given in March 2015 to fan engagement so please do contact us if you would like any further input or discussion on them.
We look forward to hearing from you and of the position the Club proposes to take on this subject.
At the same time the Football Supporters Federation has given supporters the means to lobby their clubs directly. Follow the link below to send an email to the chief executive at our club urging them to use a fraction of their new £8bn TV deal to cap ticket prices.