Writer: Andy Leggott
Date:Monday January 15 2007
As attendances across the country drop and supporters find better things to do with their Saturday afternoon, Bolton Wanderers have today shown just what they think of the average fan.
In the wake of another poor crowd at the Reebok, assisted in part by a boycott over ticket prices by City supporters, Bolton communications manager Danny Reuben has today come out fighting.
Speaking to the Bolton News Reuben delivered the following drivel.
'City were offered 2,800 tickets but only decided to take 1,800 which, because of our policy over segregation had to be in the upper tier of the South Stand.
'Had they taken the extra 1,000, they would have been in the lower tier and would have only cost £28, which would have been more or less on a par with what City charged our supporters at Eastlands last month.
'But the tickets they had were still cheaper than last year - £3 cheaper - because we lowered the category of the fixture.'
A couple of facts for Mr. Reubin.
City took the smaller allocation because they were aware that supporters intended to boycott this fixture over prices and did not wish to be left with unsold tickets on their hands for which they may have become liable for costs.
City also have a standard charging pricing for the South Stand and hence the visitors section. For the Bolton game it was £27 in both the upper and lower tiers. Taking Mr.Reubin's argument to its logical conclusion, Bolton fans in the upper tier were paying vastly reduced prices as opposed to City fans in the upper tier of Bolton's South Stand paying significantly more. Like for like comparisons are so much fairer.
By simply observing the events of six days earlier Mr.Reubin may indeed have seen the difference fair pricing has on visiting support. 6,200 supporters travelled with City to Sheffield last Sunday at a price of £19 per ticket, 6,000 Wednesday fans are expected in Manchester for the replay at a price of £15 per ticket. Do you notice the significant factor Mr.Reubin? Or are you unable to comprehend that number of away followers due to the club you represent?
Although Bolton are not the only culprits, read Wigan and Blackburn this season, they are the first to my knowledge that has seen the manager slag off their own support.
Whilst Mr.Reubin levels his criticisms at City, Fat Sam decided in the same article to lay into his own supporters.
'There were empty seats in the home end, never mind the away end,' Allardyce told the Bolton News.
'They'll all go out and have a moan again about how much it is, but it's no dearer here than anywhere else.'
Coming from a man who has been under pressure from allegations of taking bungs this quote is priceless. It show's the mans complete disregard for supporters as a whole and Bolton's support in particular.
Bolton's attitude stinks. They are not the only club attempting to rip off football supporters and they are not the only club seeing the results.
The empty seats tell a tale, the supporters have had enough. Sensible pricing is what is needed; the Sky income more than supplements that.
Date:Monday January 15 2007
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