Fan blogger Chris Brown examines the benefits of the new pricing model for the new Stadium
West Ham vice-chairman Karen Brady has previously described the move to the Olympic Stadium as a ‘game changer’ for West Ham – and the Season Ticket prices for the new Stadium announced earlier today could described in the same vein.
Going into the last season at the Boleyn, Season Ticket prices went up by 5% and many Hammers fans would have worried that the prices moving into the new Stadium would see similar sorts of increases.
Personally I always believed that the board would keep their promise of “affordable family football” which looks very much true with up to a 25% decrease in Season Ticket prices from the last season at the Boleyn.
The board have made use of the new mega TV rights deal that Sky and BT Sport struck with the Premier League that cost a whopping £5.13bn for three seasons from 2016/17.
The Premier League clubs will all benefit from such a deal and scoop up more TV rights money than they already do and rather than boost the coffers further, the West Ham board have given this money back to the Hammers faithful which is a fantastic statement as the Club looks to the future.
It does remain to be seen how many other clubs will follow suit and Malcolm Clarke, chairman of the Football Supporters’ Federation has said: "We hope that other clubs follow suit and reduce ticket prices across the board, as West Ham United have done. West Ham have thrown down the gauntlet to other clubs.”
West Ham have indeed thrown the gauntlet down to the other Premier League clubs and it will be great if the other sides make similar decreases. As the prices for tickets in the Premier League have got to the point where any more increases will leave fans forking out way too much money and ultimately turning their backs.
I have had a Season Ticket at West Ham since the 2005/06 season and since then the ticket prices have only gone one way and that is up, whilst some Premier League clubs like Stoke City do offer some good prices for supporters there are very few that do offer good value for fans.
But this is great news for West Ham as the club looks to fill the Olympic Stadium and looks to grow in the future, the pricing will obviously make it more affordable for current Season Ticket Holders but not only that, they will attract a whole new bunch of Hammers fans who simply have not been able to afford to watch Premier League football week in, week out before.
West Ham look to be setting the trend for Season Ticket prices in the Premier League for the future and it is this future that is looking bright for West Ham on and off the pitch.
The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of West Ham United