Mackem's slash ticket prices

Last updated : 28 September 2005 By Reggie Holdsworth
Adults are being charged £5 and kids just £1 in a bid to buck the trend of falling attendances. Less than 12,000 turned up for the Mackems 2nd round tie against Cheltenham.

Boro charged £20 and £10 for the recent UEFA Cup game against Xanthi and could only attract 14,000 diehards, so I would urge officials at MFC to take note of Sunderland's offer.

Keith Lamb was quoted recently, stating ". . . gate receipts account for less than 20 per cent of the club's total income. When I first came to Middlesbrough Football Club in 1986 gate receipts made more than 60 per cent of that income."

So the club don't rely so much on the supporters coming through the turnstiles, but it must make economic common sense that if you get more supporters through the turnstiles you will increase your matchday revenue.

Was the cost of the Xanthi tickets a sign of the Club trying to cash in on, when they knew the game was difficult, if not impossible for most, to watch on TV? Afterall, 80% of the clubs income is from other sources.

Steve Gibson quite rightly stated in tonights Gazette that Boro's prices were competitive in the Premiership. I wouldn't expect a reduction for Premiership games, there would be total uproar from season ticket holders who have forked out hundreds of pounds in advance. But what I would expect is MFC making every effort to fill the stadium for other games, whether that be friendlies, Carling Cup, FA Cup or UEFA Cup.

You don't have to go to the extremes of SAFC to win back the supporters. Had the tickets for the Xanthi game been £10 and £5 I'm pretty sure the attendance would have been 20,000+. Add in the additional matchday revenue from progam sales, kiosk sales, bar sales etc. etc. and you've made up the shortfall in ticket prices.

The Cup games can be seen as an opportunity to entice the next generation of supporters to the Riverside. If you can attract an extra 10,000, perhaps one or two may come back, and indeed join the Riverside revolution by buying a season ticket.

There maybe an occasion, in the not too distant future, for MFC to make a lasting jesture, so come on Boro, act now before it's too late.