Fulham’s cunning plan to ban Newcastle United fans from neutral end went well – Video
Newcastle United fans love going to Fulham.
Friendly locals, pleasant surroundings, a stadium that still retains loads of character and a neutral end.
As well as 2,700 tickets in the away end, travelling fans have the bonus of an adjacent neutral end/section.
For some games no doubt you will have it populated by tourists or whoever…but when playing a well supported club, it basically doubles up the away support.
Fulham came up with a cunning plan however this season, for some reason they decided to treat Newcastle United fans a little differently (see below).
For some weeks they happily sold tickets for the neutral end as normal, only to suddenly cancel ‘all’ tickets sold to Newcastle United fans.
They did this by cancelling all tickets sold to people with a north east postcode.
Totally missing the point that the vast majority of Toon fans who would be buying them, would be southern based. A totally pointless exercise that would only succeed in causing hassle for a fair few Newcastle supporters (who then used friends and family postcodes to buy tickets after having them cancelled), as well as a small number missing out who didn’t have that option.
Needless to say, Fulham’s cunning plan proved a resounding success, as you can see by this video below after the final whistle at Craven Cottage.
Rafa Benitz and his team going to thank the Newcastle United fans (Also wort checking out here Video footage of the Geordie Armada – 6 boats carrying almost 1,500 Newcastle fans up the Thames to the game) in the official away section and the ‘small handful’ that succeeded in getting into the neutral end…
🙌🏼 The players salute the travelling fans after the final whistle at Craven Cottage.
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) May 12, 2019
The Mag – Sunday 12 May 2019:
Sunday morning has brought an update on Fulham v Newcastle tickets.
Four and a half hours before kick-off, Fulham have made an official announcement warning people not to travel without a ticket.
The final few tickets having been sold on the morning of the game.
Not a bad effort for a club that were relegated around a month ago, up against a club where the only thing to play for is finishing somewhere between 13th and 15th.
However, what can’t be overlooked is the shameful behaviour of Fulham FC in the build up to this game.
Next to the official away section, Fulham have a ‘neutral area’, which means that as well as the 2,700 official away fans, when big clubs such as Newcastle visit they have an extra couple of thousand or more in the adjacent ‘neutral’ area.
For reasons best known to themselves, Fulham allowed the normal practice of selling tickets in this area to ‘neutrals’, including Newcastle fans, only to suddenly (see below) cancel the tickets of anybody with a north east postcode.
Both anecdotal evidence and common sense tells us that most of these Newcastle fans then simply bought tickets once again, using friends/family postcodes outside the north east.
The pointless nature of what Fulham did, summed up by the fact that most Newcastle fans buying tickets for the ‘neutral’ section would be southern based anyway.
Interesting to see just how many Newcastle fans are inside Craven Cottage when/if Rafa’s team score today.
Fulham official announcement – 10.30am Sunday 12 May 2019:
‘Tickets for Fulham’s final Premier League match of the 2018/19 campaign this afternoon against Newcastle United at Craven Cottage have now sold out.
The Whites go head to head with Newcastle today at 3pm, with the boys looking to end the season on a high following Scott Parker’s promotion to permanent Head Coach.
Your support has been fantastic and unwavering this campaign, and we thank you.
For those in attendance this afternoon, the players will re-emerge for a pitch walk after the game to also show their appreciation for your support this season.
Come On You Whites!’
The Mag – 24 April 2019:
Pretty disgraceful from Fulham football club.
The West London club have now decided to take back tickets from Newcastle United fans who had bought them in good faith for the final Premier League match of the season.
Fulham issuing refunds but countless Newcastle fans will have made travel and accommodation bookings once they’d purchased tickets.
A big positive for trips to Craven Cottage has been the fact it has ‘neutral’ sections, right next to the official away allocation.
Meaning that for Newcastle United (and other well supported clubs) the cast majority of the Putney end becomes one big away section.
In the promotion season of 2016/17, the opening Friday night of the season saw a sellout, largely down to the sheers number of Newcastle fans at the game, an estimated 7,000 or so supporting NUFC as they managed to lose the opening game.
Fulham had changed tack for this particular Newcastle game, they made it so that only Fulham fans with a previous purchase history could buy tickets in the ‘neutral’ sections.
The idea being that they wanted as many of their own supporters inside Craven Cottage if they still had a chance of staying up.
However, once relegation was confirmed at the start of April, Fulham instantly scrapped that idea.
They reverted back to their usual policy of selling tickets to the general public for the ‘neutral’ sections.
Despite tickets being twice as expensive (£60) as the official away section (Premier League rules are that you can’t charge more than £30 for away tickets), Newcastle fans instantly started buying up tickets in the ‘neutral’ areas.
However, after three weeks of happily selling tickets to Newcastle fans and letting them book and pay for travel and accommodation, Fulham have suddenly came out with the following….
Fulham official announcement:
‘Join us at Craven Cottage for the final home game of the season as the Whites take on Newcastle United on Sunday 12th May, 3pm kick-off.
Owing to restrictions imposed on the Club by the SAFETY ADVISORY GROUP, we are unable to sell tickets to away (Newcastle United) supporters.
This means that supporters who live in an NE, TD or or DH postcode will be unable to purchase.
Any electronic tickets currently purchased from fans living in these areas will be automatically cancelled and reimbursed*.
*Anyone identified as an away supporter in areas of the ground other than the designated away section will be ejected.’
A few comments on the above…
Obviously it is totally unacceptable what Fulham have done.
If such a decision is going to be made, do it BEFORE you start selling the tickets, not after the fact.
Why is there no information on how to get compensation from Fulham for any loss incurred by Newcastle fans due to them selling you tickets and booking travel/accommodation you can’t now get a refund for?
Finally, how is refunding tickets only on the basis of postcode going to ensure no Newcastle fans are in the ‘neutral’ end?
I would assume at least 50%, probably far higher, of tickets sold for this game in the ‘neutral’ areas have been sold to Newcastle fans who don’t have one of those postcodes. Instead, you will have a lot of NUFC supporters living down south who have bought up these tickets.
What Fulham have done will achieve absolutely nothing, apart from a lot of hassle and potential financial loss for some Newcastle fans.
Regardless of what Fulham have done, the ‘neutral’ end will still be predominantly Newcastle supporters.
The West London club appear to be as professional off the pitch as they have been on it this season.
The Mag – 3 April 2019:
When they are in the same division, Fulham is always a popular destination for Newcastle fans.
Craven Cottage is a ground full of character, an antidote to the characterless flatpack stadiums that have become increasingly prevalent in recent times.
Another big positive is the amount of tickets that are usually available to visiting fans.
As well as the away end, Fulham have a ‘neutral’ section, which usually has a mixture of tourists and additional away supporters.
For the Friday night game when the Championship season kicked off, the match ended up being sold out with an estimated 7,000 Newcastle fans inside Craven Cottage.
Predictably the team let everybody down that night, with a lame 1-0 defeat.
For the final match of this season, sales in the neutral section had only been available to Fulham members who had a previous purchase history.
The West London club obviously hoping they would still have something to play for when meeting Newcastle United and wanting to have as many of their own fans in the ground as possible, including in the neutral section.
Tuesday night saw Fulham relegated with five games still left to play, meaning their carefully laid final match of the season plans are now redundant.
Reacting to the relegation, Fulham have relaxed the restrictions on buying tickets in the neutral section.
So now Newcastle fans (or anybody else) can now buy online in sections P1 and P2 of the Putney End, next to the official NUFC away section.
There is one small catch, as you will have to pay twice as much as the Newcastle fans in the official away section.
Premier League away tickets are capped at a maximum of £30 for adults but the neutral section at Fulham sees tickets priced at £60, in line with most home section pricing.
There aren’t a lot of tickets left, so if you do want to invest £60 and see Newcastle’s last match of the season, visit Fulham’s ticket site HERE.
Fulham lost 4-1 at Watford last night, meaning they were 16 points adrift of safety with only 15 points to play for.
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]