We are not naïve about football economics, and fully expected prices to be higher than the £20 and £25 pricing we’ve seen for cup ties this season and last. And we understand that many fans do not see £40 to watch top European opposition as too expensive when compared with some Premier League prices. Our regret is over the size of the price increase, and the precedent this sets. The fact that there was no consultation with supporters after we have publicly praised the improvement in communication is also cause for regret.
THFC has effectively introduced match categorisation for cup games. It has ditched a widely-praised policy of accessible pricing for cup games that it was happy to see presented as a thank you to loyal fans. And it has opened the door to further rises should the club progress in the competition. The extra income the Club will raise in comparison to what it would have got from charging, say, £30 across the board does not amount to much. Is it really worth throwing away the goodwill built up over previous cup pricing for that increase?
We also worry when prices are benchmarked against already heavily-inflated Premier League prices. When some fans say thank you for 'only' increasing prices by 88% and when anything under £50 a ticket is seen as a bargain, something has gone wrong.
The simple truth is that football ticket prices are already too expensive.
We are also extremely disappointed to see that Borussia Dortmund have opted to squeeze fans too. Prices at Signal Iguna Park range from £13 to £61 on a normal matchday. The average price of a ticket in the Bundesliga is £23. Recently, Dortmund fans protested about being charged £30 for seats. Yet fans of Tottenham Hotspur are being charged £36 for this game. So much for the famous German cheap pricing model. It seems English football fans are there to be exploited.
We hope that lessons can be learned should the Club progress in this competition, and that the club will not price any further games above the Category C level.