‘Good people’ – Expert praises Liverpool despite heavy backlash over ‘cruel’ FSG decision

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One football finance expert has commended Liverpool despite some recent criticism of their decision to raise ticket prices for next season.

Last week, the club announced via its official website that most general admission tickets would see a 2% cost increase, with the price of season tickets also set to increase by up to £17.

The move was met with opposition from the Reds’ Supporters Board, which declared it a ‘cruel, unjust, unreasonable and unfair’ action during a cost of living crisis (via The Athletic).

However, Kieran Maguire has defended FSG and Liverpool for stopping short of taking complete financial advantage of their global fanbase.

Addressing the club’s decision on ticket prices and the objections of the supporters group, he told Football Insider: “I can understand it from the perspective of both parties. Liverpool could easily charge more than an extra £1 per match and they still would’ve sold every season ticket.

“On the other hand, Spirit of Shankly is well aware of the cost of living challenges in the UK.

“Both parties have some validity to their actions – Liverpool are not revenue maximisers when they come to matchday income, there’s plenty more they could squeeze out of fans.

“They could easily cut season tickets from 27,000 to 15,000 and could sell those extra tickets on a match-by-match basis at a much higher price point. But I think there are good people at Liverpool that understand this and not everyone at the club sees it as a cash cow.”

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Maguire is being quite fair and balanced in his assessment, taking the views of multiple stakeholders into consideration.

His point about Liverpool stopping short of their full potential in terms of ‘squeezing’ money out of fans is a pertinent one, considering that both Manchester United (5%) and Arsenal (10%) recently announced far greater increases to their season ticket prices (as per The Athletic).

That said, fan groups such as the Reds’ Supporters Board are quite justified in their concerns over a rise on ticket costs, irrespective of how marginal these might be.

Between entry to the game, plus travel to and from the stadium and paying for auxiliary items such as food and a programme, attending football matches in 2023 can make quite a dent in spectators’ pockets.

Matchday revenue at Anfield is still quite healthy – the club’s most recent financial reports show a £3m increase from the previous year to £86m (as per LFC’s official website).

At a time of economic worry, it’s only right that match-going supporters aren’t treated as commodities from which to glean maximum revenue.

If Liverpool are able to improve their revenues without completely exploiting the fanbase financially, it seems like the right balance is being struck.

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