Away tickets for Sunderland v Newcastle (kids) close to selling out – Claimed more to be made available
Monday afternoon saw final confirmation of the away ticket allocation for the first team of Sunderland v Newcastle kids ‘derby’ match.
The last 16 of the Checkatrade Trophy throwing up a tie that nobody apart from Newcastle fans has welcomed.
Northumbria Police having to put together a plan to police in what is reality a bit of a meaningless match in a competition nobody really cares about, whilst Sunderland instantly claimed that the game is going to end up costing, not making, them money, despite raising prices from £3 to £15 from their last Checkatrade Trophy game.
The competition rules say that away clubs should be entitled to 10% of the stadium capacity.
In Sunderland’s case that is 4,900 of their 49,000 capacity.
However, when Newcastle United confirmed that tickets were now on sale yesterday (to season ticket holders with at least 50 loyalty points), the allocation was announced as only 2,800.
Less than 24 hours after going on sale, the vast majority of those tickets have now (by 12 noon on Tuesday) been sold.
Over 2,000 tickets sold and less than 800 remaining, the official Newcastle United online ticketing system showing 778 currently available.
These remaining ones will quickly sell, especially if/when there is any lowering of the season ticket 50 loyalty points requirement.
There is still three weeks to go until the ‘derby’ and clearly Newcastle could sell many thousands more tickets if they are supplied and made available to all season ticket holders, or at least those on lower loyalty point levels.
Despite neither club commenting on the allocation, a number of north east football journalists claimed that the 2,800 allocation was only an initial one, and that Sunderland would supply more if there is a demand.
It looks like we are very shortly to find out whether that is true, with the ‘initial’ allocation set to sell out imminently.
The Mag – Monday 17 December 2018:
The Sunderland v Newcastle kids derby match takes place on Tuesday 8 January 2019.
Tickets went on sale to Sunderland fans last week and today (Monday 17 December), Newcastle supporters have found out their allocation and on-sale details.
The Checktrade Trophy rules say that away clubs are entitled to 10% of a stadium’s capacity.
For this match it should have meant at least 4,900 tickets for NUFC fans.
However, after Newcastle asked for that full allocation, Sunderland Director Charlie Methven revealed (see below) that the Mackems were trying to deny their local rivals the full allocation.
Many Newcastle United fans are going to be unhappy as Sunderland have restricted the Magpies to only 2,800 tickets, which is even less than you would be entitled to (minimum 3,000) if it had been a Premier League game.
Newcastle United official announcement:
Tickets for Newcastle United’s under-21s’ Checkatrade Trophy last 16 tie at Sunderland are now on sale to season ticket holders with 50 or more away points.
The young Magpies face Jack Ross’ League One side at the Stadium of Light on Tuesday, 8th January (kick-off 7.45pm), with a place in the quarter-finals up for grabs.
Tickets for the local derby clash are priced at £15 for adults and £5 for concessions. United have been given an allocation of 2,800 for the tie.
To purchase tickets, please visit book.nufc.co.uk, call 0344 372 1892 or visit the St. James’ Park box office (Milburn Stand) in person.
The Mag – 14 December 2018:
Tickets went on sale earlier today (Friday) to home fans for the Sunderland v Newcastle kids match.
The game is to be played on Tuesday 8 January with a 7.45pm kick-off at the Stadium of Light.
Stewart Donald revealed (see below) on Thursday that Newcastle United had asked for the full allocation for the ‘derby’ match.
Checkatrade Trophy rules state that away clubs are entitled to a minimum of 10% of a stadium’s capacity, which in Sunderland’s case is around 5,000 of their 49,000 or so seats.
However, fellow Sunderland Director Charlie Methven as now indicated that their intention is to break Checkatrade Trophy rules and give Newcastle fans a lower allocation than they are entitled to.
In this bizarre derby match, nobody knows what the actual demand will be for a midweek match between Sunderland’s first team and a team of Newcastle United kids but clearly it is not going to be a 49,000 sell out.
A bit of an embarrassment really that Sunderland are saying they couldn’t cope with 5,000 visiting fans, if it was the FA Cup then that allows for a 15% minimum away allocation, or around 7,500 in the case of Sunderland’s stadium.
Clearly it appears no agreement has so far been reached, with no confirmation as yet of the NUFC allocation.
Charlie Methven speaking to BBC Newcastle:
“The rules of the (Checkatrade Trophy) competition are that the away team gets 10% of a stadium’s capacity.
“In our case, that is just under 50,000.
“Which would mean getting 5,000 tickets and Newcastle have asked us for that allocation.
“I think that our view, and the view of our internal security team, is that this is maybe a bit high.
“There is a discussion going on with the police, and with Newcastle United, about finding the right balance.
“Stewart Donald and I are not at all fans of the whole idea of banning away fans or anything like that though…
“Away fans are part of what makes the atmosphere and they want to follow their team.”
Stewart Donald – Thursday 13 December 2018:
“I appreciate it (price of Checkatrade match tickets) has gone up but Newcastle have asked for a lot of tickets and the police bill, stewarding and general cost of the game etc is so much more due to that than the other games.
“We have tried to keep it sensible and we are certainly not likely to make much money based on costs. Just simply the cost of the fixture.
“Unlike all the other games with the volume of Newcastle fans expected to travel according to them then we have to police, steward and staff accordingly.
“That is I’m afraid, a completely different cost to opening one stand.
“We have tried to price sensibly.
“Opening one stand for a low risk game has a completely different cost base to a game against our biggest rivals who want their full allocation regardless of who is in their team.
“I have never been to a Newcastle v Sunderland game but judging by the security planning I can see why it is so expensive to stage and you can not unfortunately cover that at £3 a ticket no matter how much we would like to.
“As soon as Newcastle requested their full allocation the costs for Police, stewards, etc etc went boom understandably.
“It won’t be a payday with our costs.
“Although it is their youth team as you say, as soon as they requested their full allocation the costs involved in staging the game have become huge.
“We can’t cover that at £3 no matter how much we would like to.
“Opening one stand just isn’t the same cost base.
“Under competition rules they are entitled to 10 percent of our capacity so just short of 5000 tickets potentially.”
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