The greed of Mike Ashley continues to cause problems for Newcastle fans who want to travel to away matches, including York City tonight.
A phone call to York’s ticket office last week had confirmed that Newcastle fans wouldn’t be allowed to pay at the gate for tonight’s match.
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Fair enough of course if the tickets are sold out but…
Another phone call on Wednesday (today) lunchtime and I asked if Newcastle fans could now pay on the gate, the answer is still no, even though all the tickets haven’t been sold. I was told it is ‘all ticket’.
However…I’d already looked at the York City official website where the main article has this headline:
Pay On The Gate For Newcastle Friendly
Adults £12.00, Concessions £6.00 & Under-5s free…
YORK City supporters are reminded that there will be no prior sales from the Ticket Office for the pre-season friendly against Newcastle United on Wednesday, 29th July.
The Club will be operating a pay of the gate system in home sections of the stadium for the game against Steve McClaren’s Premier League outfit.
Prices for the game have been set at £12.00 Adults, £6.00 Concessions and Under-5s free.
Disabled supporters will pay the appropriate rate with their carer able to gain free entry as long as they are in receipt of middle or higher DLA/PIP.
For those of you who are unaware, Mike Ashley refuses to allow any Newcastle fan to buy an away match ticket, even for a friendly, unless they first pay £35 to be a member for a year (or have a season ticket where you are automatically charged a membership fee as part of your package).
The only match where it has differed was Gateshead away as a one-off.
At first it was reported that the game at Sheffield United on Sunday you wouldn’t be able to pay on the day, only for a last minute change of heart and fans were allowed to pay on the gate at the weekend. Anything different would have been ludicrous as Bramall Lane was less than half full, with only just over 12,000 turning up in total….and it was a testimonial raising money for charities (Including the Gary Seed Trust)!
It doesn’t take a genius to work out that a condition of Newcastle United appearing at these lower league clubs is that Newcastle fans have to be told they must buy their tickets in advance from St James Park, which in turn means you have to then pay for an NUFC membership if you haven’t got one and want to go to whichever friendly, which then in turn means you have to potentially hand over a £35 surcharge when it might be the only away game you go to all season.
The whole thing is just nonsense and greed from Mike Ashley, trying to force Newcastle fans to buy memberships that may be more or less worthless to them.
You then end up with a ridiculous situation like tonight, where there will be empty spaces in the Newcastle section but United fans won’t be allowed to stand/sit with their fellow fans, yet you will be able to walk into the home sections no problem.
Clubs such as York City need every penny they can get and you could have a Newcastle fan who lives next door to Bootham Crescent and who isn’t allowed to take up one of the empty spaces in the United end…
Newcastle United may have made what looks like a couple of decent signings on paper but apart from that has anything really changed in the way Mike Ashley runs the club?