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Toronto Tickets to Aston Villa Friendly Cause a Stir

toronto fc logo 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.

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About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
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21 Responses to Toronto Tickets to Aston Villa Friendly Cause a Stir

  1. philrussell88 says:

    I think you might want to edit that post as Martin Laursen, Gareth Barry, and John Carew are all “world class” player’s.

  2. AVFC57 says:

    As a UK based Villa supporter of many, many, years I can confirm that Laursen, Barry and Carew are excellent players in the English Premier League and three of the best players to have played for the Villa in the last 10 years … but “world class” – I don’t think so.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I still think the BMO will be packed for both Villa and Benfica.
    Toronto FC is best idea of MLS since its inception.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Neil Russell is way off target, there are tickets available for the Aston Villa friendly in Toronto at CA $15, and CA $48, I know because I’ve got a couple, so I think somebody needs to get their facts right before making comments like that.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I’d say two of the Villa players Agbonlahor and Young, are some of the most exciting players emerging in the EPL this season while Barry, Carew and Laursen et al are very high quality players.

  6. Simon Burke says:

    Gareth Barry = world class? hardly. He isnt an England regular, he is a decent left back at a mid level club – world class talent gets picked up by CHampions League teams. John Carew is past his best and Martin Laursen is like Mellberg was – a decent defender but not world class.

    I a English, live in DC and tickets for the Galaxy game are only available in packs right now and when they eventually have to release just individual match tickets for Beckham’s arrival I would be curious to see what they charge for a Thursday night game. I shant pay above the odds for a fella I have seen play many times in England.

  7. Anonymous says:

    either way it will be about 17 – 0 to villa

  8. The Gaffer says:

    To the one anonymous fan who said there are tickets available to the Villa game at $15 CA, please let me know where that is on the web site. The lowest I’ve seen is $110 CA.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

  9. Anonymous says:

    If you’re not impressed with the team Villa will field then why buy the over priced tickets?

  10. Jen says:

    C$15, C$48, etc. are the regular prices for single tickets to Toronto FC games, but they’ve decided to classify the friendlies again Aston Villa and Benfica as “international” games instead to justify jacking up the prices.

    My theory is that it’s partly to do with the season tickets: these were originally supposed to include 15 regular season games + 5 friendlies/whatever. But they only ended up arranging 3 of these “extra” games (Villa, Benfica and the Canada v. Argentina U20s). If you worked out the price per ticket, based on 18 games, it cost just about as much as buying single tickets for each match (assuming they were available, that is). But if they decide that tickets for the “international” games are worth two or three times as much, then it makes it seem like season ticketholders are getting more bang for their buck.

  11. Anonymous says:

    It probably takes quite an incentive to get these teams to come over hear for friendlies, and the host teams aren’t exactly swimming in MLS profits right now, so they’re going to try and maximize the return based on what they think the market will bear. And if they can include some MLS exposure by bundling tickets they’ll do it. If it doesn’t work out for them, they’ll have to lower the price. The consumer has to be responsible enough to decide if that price is worth it to them or not. If not, don’t pay it. This isn’t gas or groceries.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Comparing this to buying a ticket for a Champions League game is abit dumb. Liverpool have always had that policy (for Champions League games), that enables fans that went to the earlier games to see the knockout phase.

  13. Anonymous says:

    to the dude who says “gareth barry is hardly world class, he isn’t an england regular, he’s a decent left back at a mid level club” – you are a fool, and have no idea what you are talking about. Gareth Barry has been one of the BEST Premier League performers for at least the last two seasons. What is more amzing is that he does it from a variety of positions, left back, left midfield, and central midfield. Goals, assists, tackles, he’s got it all. Your statement that world class talent gets picked up by champions league teams is ludicrous. Ever heard of player loyalty? Gareth would grace any of the top four teams in the EPL, and you won’t find any managers in the EPL that would disagree with that. The only reason he isn’t playing for top 4 team is his loyalty to Villa, they gave him his break as a youth and he’s also the captain. Oh and John Carew, past his prime, what kind of idiot are you? He’s 27 years old, a strikers prime age is 27 to 30 so ummmmm wrong again. Do your research before making a fool of yourself all over the internet.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I’m a Villa supporter from St. Louis, MO and this news really stings. I was prepared to take a road trip to Columbus with my girl for the game. I can’t afford a trip to the UK so this is probably my best chance of seeing Villa for the next few years. I’m not about to buy a “ticket pack” from a team that plays in a city 8 hours away, just to get tickets to the one game I’d like to go to. Very disappointing indeed.

  15. Matt Booher says:

    last year I attended the columbus crew v everton friendly for $30 and had midfield seats about 8 rows up. in addition I received a free commemorative scarf and $1 bratwurst. as a villa fan located 90 minutes away in cincinnati I dont forsee $100 tickets to the crew match so lets not put the cart before the horse. yes, there is a ticket pack for the crew, but knowing the crew, they’ll come up with a special promotion for this game and it will be affordable – just like last year.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Hey, St Louis Villa man! The only other way we found to get single tickets for the Toronto game was via Ticketmaster. These are the min. $110 CA tickets. Their may be other avenues for ticket purchases but we are still waiting for Mr/Mrs Anonymous who can get them for MUCH CHEAPER to let us all know where that is!!
    As for the “World Class” comments, please define “World Class”? The Villa have plenty of International players in the squad, most of which have played on the World scene with their respective countries, including World Cups. As for the rest of the squad, watch out for the 2007/8 season. Villa are going to rock! The cool blend of exciting youngsters (Aggy, Moore, Gardner, Young, Cahill, etc) mixed with the seasoned pro’s (Laursen, Mellberg, Carew, Barry, etc) plus the new talent that will arrive in the summer – all managed by the brilliance of Martin O’Neill – will be a top five team next year. This is our chance to see the Villans just before they break into the “World Class” mould!!
    UP THE VILLA!

  17. Simon Burke says:

    To the fella who called me a ‘dude’ above and is merely a person hiding behind an anonymous posting – let me explain why Gareth Barry isn’t paying at the top 4. Simple – they haven’t bid for him. Chelsea offered how much for him? Nothing. United. nothing.. etc etc.. Loyalty aside and I am sure he is loyal, he isn’t playing for England – how many caps has he had? Sorry but if he was truly ‘World class’ a term I reserve for players like Ronaldo, Henry, Gerrard, Ronaldinho, Kaka.. then he would be receiving offers from the Barcelonas, the Uniteds of this world. He isn’t. He isn’t world class – World class is a term people like you throw around to describe players at middling clubs that tinkered with relegation this year.
    Carew was better 5 years ago than he is now – that’s what past his prime means. His prime is his optimum, his peak. For him it was back in Valencia.

    The true World Class talent that Villa have is the manager, Martin O Neill is excellent and I am envious there – if anyone can bring in World Class talent to Villa it will be him and Lerner’s money.

    I can name 4 managers in the Premier League who will tell you Gareth Barry doesn’t belong in a top 4 side – the 4 that haven’t ever bid for him. Chelsea are willing to throw 24 million pounds at Shaun Wright Phillips, Gallas plus 5 for Ashley Cole… when they needed a left back – they didn’t bother with Gareth Barry.
    Arsenal to replace Cole – didn’t bother with Barry, they developed Cliché. United have Evra and Heinze – they don’t bother with Barry. Liverpool have any number of left backs – not one of them is Gareth Barry. Sorry mate, that’s your facts and I am happy to put my name on them Mr. Anonymous.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Gareth Barry is NOT A LEFT BACK.
    sigh.

  19. Simon Burke says:

    http://football.stats.com/epl/players.asp?player=3144

    Left back he is.
    And obviously can play left mid as well.

  20. Mike says:

    Actually Tottenham have always been on pursuit with Gareth Barry. Just because the big 4 clubs don’t go for Barry doesn’t mean he’s a class player. He has been touted year in and year out to help solve Englands left midfield problem but does he get notice? No because with guys like McClaren and the former Eriksson in charge, you would never see the natural talent Gareth Barry holds. He also plays wherever the team wishes he plays. Name me another English left leg that has been consistent as Barry over the past few seasons. Then we’ll talk

    As regards to the tickets, in all honesty, i don’t care how much i would have to pay to see Villa. The opportunity does not come knocking at the door ever so often. The lower priced tickets i believe are sold out. I for one would want the best seat in the house and i don’t care if they field a weakened side, just to see the team play is already a plus for me.

  21. The Gaffer says:

    There’s an article in today’s Toronto Sun talking about the ticket rip-off. Ticket prices are ranging from $110 to $275 (Canadian dollars).

    Read the article at:
    http://www.thestar.com/Sports/article/216659

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

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