Joint statement with Spion Kop 1906 and Kop Outs

For a second successive season, Liverpool have chosen to increase ticket prices for supporters. This is despite record commercial revenues and a place as the seventh richest football club in the world. They didn’t have to do this.

There was no meaningful consultation with Spirit of Shankly, or the Supporters Board over this decision, instead following a presentation highlighting the planned rises, we and the majority of the SB strongly opposed the move. But LFC’s decision was made and we were told it would not be changed. 

The news of the price rise was released without properly informing us or the Supporters Board, which undermines the entire set-up. We had been told the announcement would be next week. 

In the past, John Henry and Tom Werner have spoken of the “unique and sacred” bond between the club and its supporters – the way in which the club has conducted itself over this trashes that idea and damages the relationship and confidence in it.

If fans really do matter and are valued by the club then freezing ticket prices for the coming season would have been a positive way to prove it.

We have continually said, given the club’s significant income from other revenue streams – figures that will increase even further next season – and the financial challenges faced by many fans, they did not need to increase ticket prices. It’s a choice, an active decision. 

There will be those who claim a 2% increase is not a lot compared with other clubs, but general ticket prices represent a small percentage of Liverpool’s annual revenue and the rise will make a minimal difference to the club’s bottom line, approximately £1million – small for the club, not so for thousands of loyal supporters, many of whom are already stretched by the cost of watching their team. 

The club’s justification for the rise is that prices have been frozen in six of the past seven years, a period that includes the pandemic. But they chose to freeze prices  following the large-scale walkout in 2016  – in opposition to the club’s plan to increase them. They state annual operating costs at Anfield as a reason for putting up prices. Yes, those costs have risen by amost 40% in this time, but the club’s revenue has grown by more than 60% in the same period. 

General ticket prices account for a small percentage of the club’s annual revenue and this increase will add considerably less than 1% at a time when that commercial income is rising. 

The race to find the richest fans in football is a worrying trend. Last season, 17 of the 20 Premier League clubs announced season-ticket price hikes, six more than the season before. Liverpool will for the first time next season sell season tickets costing £900, and seven clubs sell season-tickets for more than £1,000. There is a clear direction of travel.

There are food banks outside of the ground, price hikes inside, what price the goodwill of supporters? We are concerned that loyal fans, those that help to generate Liverpool’s famous atmosphere – adding to the commercial success – are slowly being priced out of regular attendance at Anfield. We believe this should be a primary concern of the people who run our club, too.

In a recent survey 92% of our members said we should be campaigning for a reduction in ticket prices. We will again consult over our next steps but will continue to push for cheaper and fairer pricing at Anfield and expect more meaningful conversations with the club on the subject in future.