I’m not much of a FSG basher, mainly because I’m not naive enough to think they bought the club to further the interests of Liverpudlian football. They are a business and they bought the club as an investment, plain and simple. They’re in it to make money and as most of us live in capitalist societies we can hardly condemn them for that. However, unlike them we are supporters of the club, we’ve invested both emotionally and financially in it, and as such we deserve a degree of respect above that of an ordinary high street shopper. I was therefore somewhat amazed, and disappointed, to see the tag line ‘Transforming fans into customers’ on the FSG website. Once FSG had realised this was causing some unrest amongst LFC supporters it was quickly changed to ‘Transforming consumers into fans’.

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Now, we all know FSG will attempt to sell us things, they’re a business, it’s what they do, but it’s another thing to be told to your face that they’re actively planning to change your role at the club, from a fan to a customer. In reality, a football supporter is both – through their endeavour to support their club a football fan will automatically, to varying degrees, contribute financially to the club via its services and merchandise. It’s hard to believe FSG don’t understand this so I can only assume their intention was to alter the bias, by seeing us less as fans and more as customers.

Unfortunately, for FSG, the discovery of this statement coincided with the release of the latest ticketing structure. Ian Ayre trumpeted it as ‘something for everyone’ but on closer inspection it is clear that what is given with one hand is taken away by the other.

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For example, we are told ’64 per cent of season ticket prices will decrease or freeze’ but what we are not told is that the remaining season tickets will increase in price, and at a higher rate than the decrease. We are also told ’45 per cent of matchday tickets will see a price decrease’ but we are not told that the other 55 per cent will increase, and at a higher rate than the decrease. We will no doubt, at some point, hear from FSG that they’re selling some tickets for £9 but what they probably won’t say is that it applies to just 3 matches and for 527 seats a game out of a possible 878,693. Further anomalies can be found with the pricing structure but I think you get the picture.

To put this into context, Ian Ayre explicitly stated last year that ticket prices wouldn’t rise to pay for the alterations to the Main Stand. On top of that, the club will take a share of £8.3bn in media rights sales from 16/17 to 18/19. The bottom placed club in the Premier League next season is guaranteed £95m in TV money. The question surely must be whether now is really the right time to squeeze more out of the match-going supporter, especially when you consider the myriad of income streams FSG has already got in place at Liverpool FC.

As I said at the beginning, I’m not naturally one for having a go at FSG but I do question whether they’ve gone too far this time. Liverpool supporters are not ones for taking things lying down when they feel aggrieved and I believe there is a walkout planned for the next match on the 77th minute (I suppose to highlight the new £77 ticket price). Some will say prices must go up to pay for ever increasing player transfer costs but it can hardly be said LFC buy in top price players and those expensive players that have been purchased in the past have usually been overpriced, an error for which the supporters shouldn’t have to pay. In any case, the arms race between player transfer costs and ticket prices has to stop at some point, it is ultimately unsustainable. It’s time FSG asked themselves how much custom can they expect from us before they finally lose our support?

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HAMNUM8
Member

I’m not a big fan of FSG or the way they do business, but business is what they’re about & not the clubs best interests at heart unfortunately. For me it always seems as soon as we have an investment (Suarez) or a chance to make more money (new stand) they exploit it. Not saying Suarez was ever going to stay. Don’t get me wrong having a new stand is fantastic & needed to keep up with the bigger stadiums but as is reflected in the new prices it seems we will be paying for it rather than the owners giving us the fans something back. From a black & white POV they’re businessmen & will only ever treat the club as a business which for us as fans & including me is difficult to take because all we ever have is the best interests of the club & one another at heart.

warrior18
Member
Not tarring all americans with the same brush but in the main americans love the buck, an american could be a billionare and still want more. We knew fsg/henry was all about the dollor and fattening up his bank account, spend as little as possible and make as much as possible, that’s the mantra you get when you have american owners. I’m neither a fan of theirs nor do i dislike them, they own the club and they do as they wish i’m afraid. I try not to think about our owners as i know why their here and as some of you will know, i despise greed. There’s one thing i could never do while in anfield at a game and that’s to walk out with 15 minutes of the match left, i feel guilty running to the loo during a game and can’t wait to get back to my seat. I know there’s arguments for and against this action but imo a better course of action would be to hold up banners at the end of the game and refuse to leave the ground until forced to do so. A supporter is at the ground to do one… Read more »
HAMNUM8
Member

Does seem stupid warrior especially as you’ve already paid for your ticket. Banners are a great way to get your point across especially with all the exposure through television & press.

warrior18
Member

Exactly hammo, can you imagine the media if thousands of supporters stayed in the ground after the game waving banners and chanting about ticket prices, far more affective and would get huge exposure in the tabloids. I know there was a recent problem with banners but even without them they could still stay after the game and chant until removed by stewards and or the police but do it peacefuly of course, anyway, forgot to do a sunderland thread, lol, 😯

Huytonian
Member

After the Norwich game I’d be surprised if there were many takers for leaving the stadium after 77 minutes. Surely there must be better ways of making the protest as Warrior says.

Musicman71 aka Muso
Member

Totes agree. FSG must’ve had wry smile on their faces, knowing that those who walked had already paid to be at the Sunderland game. They’d already got the money for those tickets. A protest before the match, then a sit in, after the match would’ve been a much better idea.
Better yet, why not get a huge banner (like the J4T96-Vindicated one) and have it make it’s way across the KOP, or even round all four stands. That would have more of an impact, And wouldn’t hurt the teams morale, whilst they’re still playing.

sandiphulse
Member

Apart from getting Klopp on board, I can’t remember the last best thing they have done… oh and Firminho was a good signing too…

Musicman71 aka Muso
Member

Don’t forget (work on) the new main stand.

DB-99
Member

I can understand the walk out. It’s a demonstration that without the fan base football would not be sport that it is today. I’m not a fan of FSG but for them and other owners like Villa one, it’s just wrong that they are owning a club to make money. Essentially it’s exploitation of the mass population of fans and the money is affecting the sport as well. There’ll be a breaking point in the future where this is simply unsustainable.

lanoisseforp
Member

I have been paying attention to this since the news broke out especially the gaff or these words “turning fans into customers” There isn’t much I can add because I agree with all your posts earlier. Go back to the those words… did they really mean to use them and realized the backlash that forced them to change it?

£77 for a match day ticket isn’t something we can spend every time to see a home game. The walk out at the 77th minute is a good idea but those match day tickets have been already paid for so it doesn’t matter to FSG but however it may cause an effect for the future new ticketing prices.

I like the protest and they are doing this for the Supporters welfare because we love the club so much and getting treated like scum when all they see is dancing $$$$$$$$$ signs.

Koped49
Member
I am afraid it is the same all over the USA they pay big bucks to go to their American football and base ball as well as basket ball, all well established sports over there, when they first attracted fans of their games, prices were moderate. Then enter the bankers, business men, accountants etc , and up go the prices, no such thing as a working mans sport any more, they won’t worry if you walk out, just look at the waiting list for season tickets, anyone who can’t afford it, then they will be sold to next one on the list, and so it will go on, unfortunately the only way to make them see sense is don’t go into the ground, don’t pay them you money, if everyone did it then, the atmosphere will be none existstant, no crowds no tv interest. See how long that lasts. Players cost far to much money, and get paid silly amounts in wages. Total out of sink with what you get paid for working your nuts of, how many of you would pay to play let alone play for money, you would give anything to play for the club if possible.… Read more »
Musicman71 aka Muso
Member

£5.14bn. That should go to subsidising ticket prices, but because of increasingly high wage demands (and the agents who hold clubs to ransom, to make sure that those demands are met), not gonna happen.
Just as a matter of interest, do you think that those who walked out on Saturday will walk out on the 77th minute of the League Cup final, as well?

sandiphulse
Member

I am working and I have worked for Americans all the time… I really don’t think that any American company cares for customers , let alone the football club fans…. It will be interesting to see how this will turn out….

Besides there is a huge difference between football fans and consumers, what is fucking wrong with them, so are you considering as customers right now and you want to transform us into fans…. so can we go to king power stadium , coz statistically they have a better product….. FSG PR team is a bunch of idiots

Musicman71 aka Muso
Member

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