Friday 28 July 2017

Premier League Clubs to cap away tickets to £30 for next three seasons

Sam Wallace

The 20 Premier League clubs will cap ticket prices for away fans at £30 for the next three years, it has been announced today, in a major victory for supporters’ groups who have lobbied for the introduction of a limit on pricing.

The agreement was reached among the Premier League clubs this month and will be binding for the three new clubs who are promoted from the Championship next year. It follows high-profile campaign by groups including the Football Supporters’ Federation who have pursued a policy of calling for a £20 limit - the “Twenty’s plenty” initiative.

It also heads off the prospect of ticket price protests ahead of the Premier League’s next shareholders meeting on March 23, which were likely to be a major source of embarrassment to the league and the clubs. Telegraph Sport understands there have been meetings at the Premier League’s Gloucester Place headquarters today to finalise the £30 ticket agreement.

The new deal replaces the “away supporters’ initiative” which was worth £200,000 annually to every club and allowed them to subsidise the cost of travel to games, subsidise tickets or improve facilities.

Clubs will have to abandon their categorisation rules where tickets are priced at higher prices for away fans for the visits of the bigger clubs, such as Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal. The agreement coincides with the beginning of the new television deal which will earn the Premier League clubs £8.3 billion over the next three-year cycle.

In a statement the Premier League said that away supporters were “essential for match atmosphere and stimulate the response from home fans that distinguishes Premier League matches from those of other leagues.

“They have additional travel costs and pay individual match prices, as season ticket and other discounts are not available to them  Responsibility for them is shared between clubs and therefore it is right that there is a collective initiative to help them.”

“This has long been understood by clubs who currently provide away fans with a range of measures designed to assist them, including the Away Supporters’ Initiative (ASI) introduced in 2013.  At their last meeting on 4 Feb clubs unanimously agreed that more should be done to help away fans and, after consideration of a range of options, have now decided to introduce the new £30 maximum price for away tickets.  This replaces the ASI as a single, league-wide recognition of the importance of away fans”

• The £30 away ticket cap will apply for three seasons from 2016/17 to 2018/19

• Away Supporters Initiative (ASI) was set up in 2013/14 to tackle rising costs

•  ASI have tried to help away fans by improving facilities and reducing travel and ticket costs

• There has been a 9 per cent increase in away support since the beginning of the ASI

Telegraph.co.uk

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