Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has refused to back up fellow managers, who are calling for their respective clubs to not underestimate the value in filling their stadiums.
Last weekend we saw Liverpool fans stage a walk-out during the 77th minute of their match with Sunderland, which coincided with the team letting go of a 2-0 lead, and settling with a draw.
This weekend will see another protest, with top of the table Leicester refusing to take to their seats until five minutes into the match, although over a separate issue with the league organisers, who decided to move the match by 24 hours, around a month after some tickets had already been purchased, resulting in a loss of money for some who had pre-arranged travel arrangements and/or accomodation for the weekend.
Premier League managers have moved to back the recent fans backlash, but Arsene Wenger as usual defends his club…
Wenger’s only comment on the situation was that his side’s “most common ticket price is lower than average”.
While West Ham’s Slaven Bilic and Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew were agreeing somewhat with the protests.
“I think a balance can be found to keep fans happy,” Bilic said. “Otherwise we will have empty stadiums. It’s not like going to London to see Les Miserables, it’s football.
“It’s not polo, it’s not golf, it’s not a sport for the upper classes. It’s the most popular sport and shouldn’t be a privilege for a family to go and watch.”
Pardew added: “The owners of the football clubs – and we have a lot of foreign owners – need to really consider carefully that they don’t lose the core supporters that we have.
“Because if they think it’s just the product on the pitch that makes the Premier League what it is, it isn’t – it’s the atmosphere.”