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Best Thing that Mike Ashley has done for Newcastle – And It’s not Pardew’s contract

The suspense is over, what I am referring to is the freezing of the ticket prices for the next ten years.


The game between Arsenal and Chelsea at the Emirates will cost the spectators a minimum of £ 62 a seat. Just don’t know how that can be sustainable in the current economic environment. In my opinion that is just going to drive fans away from the game. The prime reason for these high prices are the ever increasing transfer fees, agent fees and the wages. The clubs in order to balance the books take the easy option and supporters have to take most of that burden.

Newcastle of course fixed the prices of the season tickets for the next ten years last year and I think in his five and a bit years at the helm that is the best thing that he has done for the Geordie faithful.

This year too the scheme has been continued, those who are getting a nine – year scheme or renewing for one season will have to pay 5% more. This has played a significant role in increasing the crowds by close to 5% at St. James’s Park. Comparing Newcastle’s strategy with other premier league clubs it shows that out of other 19 clubs only West Bromwich Albion have reduced prices while 12 have kept prices frozen while 5 have increased and Southampton are yet to release their prices.

The results are there for all to see, at present Newcastle have 36000 season ticket holders and the family area attracts 7500 people. Fans are often described as the twelfth man and Newcastle are doing everything to have them present at every game. A well thought of strategy as if anything is lost in prices can potentially be made up in prize money

The Idea to some extent may have been inspired by the Bundesliga where fan is the king and the prices are a lot lower than what some of the English clubs charge. For instance one can watch German champions Borussia Dortmund at a lower price than Reading and QPR, just to name two. In addition the match day travel in Germany is free of cost too. A really admirable business model and the results are there for all to see

League

Average Attendance 2011 – 12

Bundesliga

45, 726

Premier League

34,601

La Liga

30,272

Serie A

24,200

Mike Ashley rewarding Alan Pardew with a new eight year deal was great, but in my opinion this is the best thing that he has done for the club. Managers as well as players come and go but it is the supporters who are associated with the club longer than anyone of those and put their hard earned money in the club. They are indeed the heart and soul of the club and they deserve the best. So as the saying goes, here I am  giving the devil his due, well done Mike Ashley.

Although, some of the things Ashley has done in his time at Newcastle including renaming St. James’s Park will never be forgiven.

Comments Welcome

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About Himanshu Dhingra (115 Articles)
I am a Newcastle United Fan and an Economist by Degree, Follow me on Twitter @HD_07. I love Indian Politics, Cricket, Formula 1, lawn Tennis

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