A hefty price to pay for Wednesdayites in chase for success - Liam Hoden's Sheffield Wednesday column
It is a well worn line that it is particularly expensive to follow Sheffield Wednesday.
And in light of the BBC’s latest Price Of Football survey, it is a line that can hardly be disputed with any real conviction.
Whether or not you agree with the given reasons for the high prices, it is difficult to not raise eyebrows when the cost of supporting the Owls is compared with rivals in the Championship and beyond.
Headline stats include:
- Wednesday offer the second most expensive match ticket in the Championship for home supporters
- They also sell the dearest match ticket in the second tier for away supporters, one £12 more than the £30 cap in the Premier League.
- The adult shirt will become the most expensive in the division plus the fifth dearest in English football when prices rise at the end of the month.
That Wednesday also offer the seventh cheapest lowest price matchday ticket is hardly any consolation.
Putting it bluntly, Wednesdayites are being asked to part with a fortune to support their club.
A repeated argument is that the real value is in season tickets. Being fair, the most popular tickets have remained steadily priced in recent years.
But when it comes to each club’s cheapest season ticket, Wednesday have the second highest in the division. The fact 11 Premier League clubs offer a cheaper season ticket only further hampers the ‘value’ argument.
And also that the most expensive season ticket at Hillsborough is the fourth dearest in the Championship. Remember, this ain’t London.
Dejphon Chansiri has repeatedly inferred that if supporters want success, they have to pay for it.
That is all well and good, but he is the man who has chosen which path towards glory the Owls have taken.
It was Chansiri who decided to spend big and spend quickly, rather than building more steadily.
And it is that choice which has seen the pressures of Financial Fair Play increase with each passing year Wednesday do not reach the Premier League.
It is Chansiri’s club and he can do with it whatever he likes. He has parted with a tremendous amount of money during his short time in S6.
But to expect supporters to partly prop up his own business decisions by paying hefty prices, is a lot to ask, particularly when the target of promotion has twice been missed.
Critics will say that no one is forced to pay these prices.
But I would hazard a guess that the majority of people reading this would find it very difficult to stay away from their club.
Football as an industry relies on emotion and attachment. It is unfortunate when at times it feels that is being somewhat exploited.