Time for the FAW to support the fans

Is the Football Association of Wales going to slash the extortionate prices of tickets at the Millennium Stadium?
Well, possibly, if you read today’s papers.
Average turnout at matches during the Euro 2008 qualifiers was just over 24,000, with middle tier seats costing £35 plus booking and postage fees.
The Western Mail today reported that a cut in prices was the last thing on FAW secretary David Collins’ mind.
According to Collins: “I have heard people say tickets were expensive for the Euro campaign just gone, but you could still purchase them for £10 and £5 in the lower tier.
“In my eyes, that represented terrific value for money. And remember, the lower tier holds 23,000 seats, which is almost a third of the ground.
“Tickets for other parts of the ground ranged from £35 to £25. But, with respect, people pay four times that to watch Premiership matches.”
However, not all FAW suits appear happy to think of a stadium with just the lower tier filled.
The South Wales Echo reported today that the governing body does look set to slash prices in a bid to boost John Toshack’s assault on World Cup 2010 qualification.
“The Football Association of Wales hierarchy want a return to the capacity attendances that roared on Mark Hughes’ team to within a whisker of the Euro 2004 finals,” claimed the Echo.
The decision would mean a return to the £5 and £10 ticket policy – and a cut of around £15 to sit in the middle tier.
“We want to get behind the team and we want the supporters to be there,” said an unnamed FAW official – presumably not Mr Collins. “We see no point in 20,000-30,000 fans rattling around a 70,000-seater stadium.”
Interestingly, Welsh fans have just returned from Germany, where supporters pick up tickets for the top flight Bundesliga for an average price of under 19 Euro.
The 98-page A4 programme produced by the Germans for last week’s international cost just one euro. Welsh fans pay £3.50 for the far less impressive product sold here.

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