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SBD Global/April 22, 2013/Franchises

Arsenal Hopes To Build Fan Base By Offering $15 Tickets For Teen Fans

Premier League Arsenal has "reacted to criticism" about its ticket prices by bringing in a £10 ($15) teenagers-only section for next season, according to Julian Bennetts of the London EVENING STANDARD. There will be between 800 and 1,000 seats in the section, "which will not apply for Category A games." Although the club will lose almost £400,000 ($609,000) per season because of the initiative, it hopes "to attract a new generation of fans." Arsenal has "taken the brunt of public frustration over the increasing cost of attending football." Arsenal's game against Chelsea in September -- for which prices started at £62 ($94) --was "labelled as the most expensive in Premier League history." Man City "returned 900 tickets," also priced at £62 each. There has "also been numerous occasions when the Emirates has seemed less than full, with the club now announcing ‘tickets sold’ rather than the attendance on matchdays" (EVENING STANDARD, 4/19). In London, Charlie Skillen reported two fan groups -- the Arsenal Supporters' trust and the Arsenal Independent Supporters' Association -- "proposed the scheme, which was implemented following talks with club officials." Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis said, ''This is an important initiative to encourage young fans to come to games and make a big contribution to the atmosphere at the Emirates Stadium. Our young fans represent the future of the club" (DAILY MAIL, 4/19).
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