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Supporters want EFL away ticket price cap – survey

Supporters in the Championship overwhelmingly back a league-wide price cap on away tickets, according to a survey carried out by the Middlesbrough Supporters Forum (MSF).

MSF’s survey, carried out to understand more about why fans do or don’t travel to the Riverside stadium as away fans, showed that 97% of fans want to see an away ticket price cap in the division.

Supporters surveyed said they wanted to see a league-wide price cap somewhere between £20 and £25.

Mark Motley, chair of MSF, said: “We were keen to find out why many fans are reluctant to travel to Boro to follow their team as we have a fairly low away attendance at many games.

“The research showed us that it is a combination of issues, some of which are out of the club’s control – Middlesbrough can’t be geographically moved! However, there are some things including ticket prices and better and comprehensive information for away fans that could be considered.”

When asked if they had travelled to Middlesbrough at any time to watch their team, 26% of responders said no.

The main reasons given were distance, cost of travel and cost of ticket. However, a number of supporters said the ground was difficult to get to on an increasingly expensive public transport network.

“As a fans’ group we are firmly in favour of a price cap on away tickets and that is obviously reflected across all clubs with an overwhelming vote in favour,” Mark said.

“The other, less positive, thing to come out of our survey is the rise in anti-social behaviour.

“This reflects the anecdotal feedback MSF is getting from Boro supporters at away games, and something that we are working with Middlesbrough to understand what can be done to crack down on this.”

Lower ticket prices, better transport links, a guide to Middlesbrough and more to do before and after the match were given as things that could be done to attract bigger away followings.

The MSF research was carried out in June 2022 – with 144 responses from 19 Championship clubs.

What does the FSA think?

A number of clubs in the division are charging away fans some eye-watering prices that put some fans off following their team away.

Previously, the EFL has said it would not introduce a competition-wide price cap, saying that pricing was a matter for each individual club.

The FSA continues to support a cap and urges clubs not to take advantage of away fans visiting their grounds. Away fans are vital to the matchday spectacle and an important part of English football’s matchgoing tradition.

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