Posted on October 26th, 2012
Last week the BBC compiled a survey on the prices of all aspects of a football match, including pies for 10 football leagues in England and Scotland. This data led Lib Dem MP Tim Farron to table a motion in the House of Commons calling “On honourable members to encourage people to go and see local non-League teams like Kendal Town or Barrow in the South Lakes, where ticket prices are 60-80% cheaper”.
While it may be much cheaper, even Tim Fallon would agree the quality of football that you’ll see at a Kendal Town would be much lower than that of a Premier League match. We therefore set out to see which of the clubs were charging more or less than we would expect for their quality of football.
It seemed somewhat unfair to compare the Scottish and English leagues due to the lack of potential crossover between supporters of the two. We therefore only considered the top four English leagues in the research presented here.
When looking at the raw data it became instantly clear that many of the London clubs charge more than other members of their league, irrelevant of the league. We therefore introduced a “London premium” to take into account when estimating a suggested price for the ticket etc. Additionally you would expect to pay more for a team in a higher league, even if the quality of the home team may be poor, because of the quality of the away team. Finally we considered the relationship to the DecTech team strength parameters in order to determine the quality of the football team. We were then able to fit a model to predict the amount we would expect to be charged for season tickets, etc. Below we have shown how much the five teams that are over or under charging their supporters the most and by how much they are over or under charging their supporters.
This already somewhat ruins Tim Farron’s hypothesis with Man City, Wigan and Fulham showing there are bargains to be found in the Premier League.
However it must be noted that four of the teams that charge significantly more than they should are also Premier League teams. It may be possible to hypothesize that Man City can undercharge due to the size of their stadium. Both Liverpool and Tottenham are looking to expand their stadium capacity, which could allow them to lower their season ticket prices.
Again there are Premier League bargains available for a day ticket.
It does appear that for a day ticket, a large number of Premier League clubs are overcharging.
Cheapest Day Out
Newcastle and Fulham again prove that you can get a value for money day out in the Premier League. However of the five teams that are overcharging four are Premier League.
The most important measure of a stadium trying to rip you off is obviously the pie.
Blackpool, Blackburn and Wigan all have cheap pies and are in the top two divisions.
You would hope the Brighton pies taste amazing!
Fulham and Newcastle are the Premier league bargains for day tickets and a cheap day out. But when going to a Fulham match you might want to pick a pie up at AFC Wimbledon on the way. Liverpool is one of the constant offenders when it comes to overcharging.