After 10,000 Liverpool fans walked off the terraces at Anfield over the proposed increase in ticket prices, the cub’s owners had a serious re-think and backed down issuing a public statement of regret.
Liverpool supporters staged a mass walkout during the Premiership match with Sunderland at Anfield onSaturday 6 Feb 2016 in protest at the club’s decision on to increase ticket prices up to £77 for next season.
Thousands of supporters left Anfield early, missing their side throw away a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2 with relegation threatened Sunderland.
Prior to the walkout on 77 minutes, the Kop chanted ‘Out the ground on 77’ and ‘You greedy bastards, enough is enough’ – which was applauded by all four sides of the stadium.
With typical scouse wit an early rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone was started on 76th minute just before fans headed for the exits.
There were noticeable empty blocks of seats all around the ground, particularly in the Kop where, before kick-off, fans had waved black flags instead of their usual club colours in protest.
There was also plans by the main protest groups to target the club’s sponsors in a extended campaign to highlight the unfairness of the ticket pricing. It was perhaps this, coupled with the success of the matchday protest, that spurred the club’s management into action.
Statement from Spirit Of Shankly and Spion Kop 1906
Although the last week has been a sorry tale in the recent history of the relationship between owners of LFC and the Club’s supporters, it has also seen both the best of what Liverpool FC supporters are about and the incredible power those same supporters have to promote change for the better at LFC.
Today’s announcement has to be seen a positive step in repairing the relationship between owners and supporters. If they had recognised what was being said by supporters about the impact of the original price rises (perhaps by actually meeting with their own Ticketing Working Group) then much of the embarrassment and upset of the last four days would have been avoided. It is a sobering lesson in listening to your supporters properly.
We welcome these changes from the owners and that they have recognised the mistake made and apologised for it. We take no delight in them being wrong. It helps no one. What is important though is that a lesson is learned and that proper engagement and taking note of supporters’ concerns occurs and those views are taken more seriously.
We started this process to make football cheaper for all LFC supporters, to make it fairer and to increase access for younger and local supporters. This proposal is not our panacea. More must be done to make football affordable. However we have always stated that this is a journey that the owners should embark upon and this is a positive step in the right direction towards fairness and away from greed, but it is only one step.
We will now take this opportunity to review the numbers and their impact upon supporters, we will be speaking to the club about it and we will speak with supporters to get their views.
The Spirit of Shankly and Spion Kop 1906 believe that given the fact there has been this reconsideration by the owners, it is only fair and appropriate that we reconsider our next steps until the full impact of these changes can be established.
- Read Liverpool FC climb down statement in full here: http://www.liverpoolfc.com/news/announcements/206821-fsg-s-message-to-liverpool-supporters
- Read more here: http://www.spiritofshankly.com/news/response-to-new-ticket-announcement