Football Fans Are Spending More Than Ever

 By: Alison White
Football fans are spending more than ever in order to travel to matches.

According to a recent research released by Virgin Money, 46 per cent of Premiership supporters said they had gone to fewer games this season, 41 per cent in the Championship, 37 per cent in League One and 35 per cent in League Two. Virgin said its Football Fans Price Index showed that the cost of going to games has risen by 17 per cent since the start of 2006.

One in seven supporters say will go to at least 10 fewer games this year because they can't afford it.

41% of supporter said they had cut the numbers of games they attended in 2006 going to at least 10 fewer games last year.

Average attendances at Manchester City, Bolton Wanderers and Wigan Athletic so far this season are, in each case, significantly down on levels for the whole of 2005-06. Even Newcastle United's loyal support has been affected, with average crowds slipping below the 50,000 mark after exceeding 52,000 last season.

The rising cost of live football is forcing fans to cut the number of matches they attend.
Chairman of the Football Supporters' Federation, Mr. Malcolm Clarke said: "I only hope club chairmen, the FA and the leagues sit up and take notice.

"Fans are fed up to the back teeth of being treated as turnstile fodder. Their loyalty is being exploited with ever-higher prices.

"Football won't be the people's game for much longer in this country if this keeps up.
"The rate of inflation on Planet Football is three to four times higher than here on Planet Earth.

"It's time for the match-going supporter to be given a break. Ticket prices have got to come down.

"Football's live audience is aging - where's the next generation of fans going to come from?"

The Index shows that in 2006 the cost of attending games has risen by 17.33 per cent to •£91.46. When the index was launched on January 31st 2006 the matchday basket of goods cost •£77.95.
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