After returning 912 of their allocated 3,000 tickets, the Manchester City fans who travelled 200 miles to the Emirates yesterday were rewarded for their efforts when their club sailed to a solid 2-0 victory over their north London hosts.
The decision to reject almost a third of their tickets was recognised by Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore, who told BBC Radio Five Live’s ‘Sportsweek’ he thought City fans sent Arsenal “a very clear message”.
“I think the Man City fans have done what they should do if they think it is too much and not turned up.
In light of record TV revenue figures in the Premier League, when quizzed about whether he thought ticket prices should be lowered at all clubs, Scudamore said, “Over the last 15 years we have managed to achieve 90% occupancy. This year occupancy is up at 95% and could well reach an all-time high this season.”
In comparison to last season’s average attendance in England’s top flight there has already been a 3 per cent increase in fans going through turnstiles. Manchester United, who had an average attendance of 75,387 at the close of last term, have clocked up an average of 75,507 so far this season and whilst sitting at the bottom of the averages table, Queen’s Park Rangers have also recorded an improvement with a 3.2% rise in spectators this season compared to the last.
The Premier League CEO also went on to express that the Premier League’s main objectives are: ”A: we keep grounds full and B: we have rules about making away allocations available to away fans.”
“When categorising games and setting prices next season, [Arsenal] will have to take that into account,” he said.