Not before time, it has been confirmed today that the 20 Premier League clubs have reluctantly accepted the meed to limit away ticket prices.
The FSF (Football Supporters Federation) had tirelessly campaigned for ‘Twenty’s plenty’.
However, instead of accepting that £20 is more than enough to charge away fans who provide/provoke most of the atmosphere at matches, the 20 Premier League clubs have ‘unanimously’ agreed that ‘Thirty’s the most we can get away despite every club getting extra tens of millions every year as from next season.
With falling numbers of away fans, the Premier League used £12m from the last TV deal to fund the ‘away fans fund’, which gave every club £200,000 a season to try and encourage more away fans to travel. Much of this money was used by clubs to discount away ticket prices and travel.
Apart from real extremes like Chelsea, it will be interesting to see just how much benefit most fans will now see, as that £200,000 for each club per year has been scrapped and replaced by this new scheme.
Most clubs are guilty of trying it on whenever they can, including Newcastle who charge a premium for the likes of Manchester United and recently have charged Sunderland fans £47 for the derby on 20 March.
Official Premier League Statement
‘Premier League Clubs today announce a new deal for away fans
After consideration of a range of options, Premier League Clubs have today undertaken that away fans will be able to attend Premier League matches for the next three seasons and pay no more than a maximum of £30 for their tickets.
Clubs know that away fans have a unique status:
They are 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 (4 February 2016) 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.’