Toronto Tickets to Aston Villa Friendly Cause a Stir


Reader Neil Russell sent me an irate email this morning about the price that Toronto FC is charging for tickets to the Aston Villa friendly on July 25. I don’t blame him.

The cheapest ticket to the match is CA $110, which is $100 US. In comparison, I can buy a ticket to this weekend’s Toronto match against DC United for $54 US and that’s price level 2 (presumably the cheaper tickets are already sold out).

I tried to log on to see for myself how the ticket buying experience was online at the Toronto web site. No single match tickets were available for the Aston Villa match, but I could buy a “Euro Pack” for $483 US (which is for seven matches including the Villa and Benfica friendlies). That averages out to $69 US per match. But what if I wanted to just go to the Villa match?

I decided to take a look at ticket prices for Chelsea’s matches in Los Angeles this summer. The cheapest pack you can buy, for general admission seats, is $145 US. For that price, you get five games over three days (and two of the matches will feature Chelsea). No single match tickets are available for the Chelsea match.

The same applies to the July 28 friendly between Villa and Columbus. The ticket web site shows that you have to buy a ticket pack to several games in order to see Villa as one of them.

Of course, the Toronto ticket prices are scandalous. At least the Galaxy offers a more reasonable price structure, which averages a very reasonable $29 for the five game pack. All of this reminds me about my experience trying to get a ticket to see Liverpool against PSV Eindhoven in the earlier rounds of the Champions League in late November. You can’t simply buy a match ticket. You have to me a Liverpool Fan Card member. Then you had to have purchased tickets for another Liverpool match to get a ticket to the PSV one.

The shame about the Villa match is that one, it’s a friendly and two, there’s no guarantee Martin O’Neill is even going to play a first team squad. And when you think about it, even his first team squad doesn’t feature any world-class players. Without a doubt, Toronto FC is taking advantage of football fans and that isn’t fair.