At the end of April, a petition looking at the prospect of safe-standing at Premier League and Championship stadiums reached the 100,000-signature milestone, meaning the topic was to be considered for debate by MPs in the House of Commons.
While the voluminous clamour regarding pricey football tickets has been increasing by the year in England, advocates such as The Football Supporters’ Federation (FSF) and Sports Minister Tracey Crouch have been pushing the idea of safe-standing football tickets, specifically in the Premier League, forward.
Standing has not been permitted in Premier League and Championship stadiums since the tragic Hillsborough disaster that killed 96 Liverpool fans in 1989 prompted the Football Spectators’ Act sanctioned following recommendations in the Taylor Report.
Now stadiums are much safer places to watch football, it does seem like the push for safe-standing to be introduced is gradually gaining momentum and bodes well for the future of purchasing football tickets.
The Football Supporters’ Federation conducted a survey in 2012, in which nine out of ten supporters backed that there should be a choice to sit or stand when watching their football teams, which leads to a benefit.
Fans would have the choice whether to sit or stand, meaning anyone can buy football tickets and be comfortable while still creating a good atmosphere. Another benefit is also on the topic of choice, as match-going fans won’t have to worry about having their view blocked if they’d like to sit.
The primary benefit though is all about the price of football tickets and how it would decrease if safe-standing was introduced – and prices definitely need to be decreased in England.
Safe-standing football tickets have been on sale for many years in Germany, where the price of football tickets is, coincidentally, much cheaper than it is in England.
Research has shown that the average of the cheapest football tickets for a single match in the Premier League came in at £28.30, £18 more than the average of cheapest in the German top-flight, the Bundesliga.
The average of the cheapest football tickets is just £10.33, with the average of the most expensive football tickets up at £47.39.
The English average is significantly higher though, over £10 higher to be precise at £57.95 with some Premier League match football tickets costing supporters over £100, a ludicrous amount.
Former Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger has given his full backing to the idea of safe-standing, whilst Premier League clubs Crystal Palace and Wolverhampton Wanderers asking fans to support the potential introduction.
League One side Shrewsbury Town are installing safe-standing rail seats at their ground this summer, whilst Championship club West Bromwich Albion had a request to install 3,600 rail seats at The Hawthorns rejected in April.
The Football Supporters’ Federation continue to fight for safe-standing in the English game and surely, from online Arsenal tickets prices to atmospheres, this article explains exactly why that’s the case.
Parliament held a debate on safe-standing at football grounds on Monday 25 June which resulted in the Government commissioning a review into the debate.