Premier League agrees away ticket price freeze

Photo credit: AFP

Photo credit: AFP

Premier League clubs have agreed to freeze the price of away tickets for traveling supporters at “no more than £30 ($43, 39 euros) for the next three seasons, officials announced on Wednesday.

There have long been complaints from supporters’ groups at the steady increase in ticket prices while Premier League revenues, particularly from lucrative broadcast deals, have skyrocketed.

But now, in an acknowledgement of the contribution away fans make to the atmosphere of a matchday, their ticket prices will be held to a £30 ceiling at the same time as English top-flight clubs enjoy the proceeds of a £5.14 billion television rights deal for 2016-2019, up 70 percent on the previous agreement.

“After consideration of a range of options, Premier League Clubs have today undertaken that away fans will be able to attend Premier League matches for the next three seasons and pay no more than a maximum of £30 for their tickets,” said a Premier League statement.

The statement added that clubs recognized away fans’ “unique” status and that they were “essential for match atmosphere and stimulate the response from home fans that distinguishes Premier League matches from those of other leagues”.

It also said: “Away fans have additional travel costs and pay individual match prices, as season ticket and other discounts are not available to them and the responsibility for them is shared between clubs and therefore it is right that there is a collective initiative to help them.”

Last month the US-based owners of Liverpool scrapped controversial plans to hike Anfield ticket prices after 10,000 fans walked out of the ground in protest during a Premier League match against Sunderland.

Principal owner John W Henry and chairman Tom Werner acted after legions of angry Reds fans stormed out of the ground in the 77th minute of a match where Liverpool were 2-0 up but finished drawing 2-2.

The timing reflected the £77 being asked for the most expensive ticket at Anfield next season.

But, responding to the protest, Liverpool changed course and said, in a policy that will include the 2017/18 season, that the highest match-day price for a general admission ticket would remain at £59 and the lowest £9.

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