Arsene Wenger defends ticket prices at Arsenal
Manchester City failed to sell allocation for this weekend's game
Friday 11 January 2013
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger insists all clubs want to keep ticket prices down, but accepts fans have to contribute to income through the turnstiles.
The issue of prices resurfaced this week after Manchester City returned 912 unsold tickets to Arsenal, priced at £62, for Sunday's match at Emirates Stadium.
There have been calls for a cap on the amounts clubs charge away fans - especially for high-profile Category A matches - but the Premier League insists prices are a matter for individual clubs, while the Football Supporters' Federation want some of next season's bumper new TV deal passed on to fans by reducing ticket prices.
Wenger admits the situation is "delicate", but believes supporters will always have to make a significant contribution to revenue streams.
He said: "Ideally you want ticket prices to be as low as possible, but on the other hand the only way we can pay the wages and compete without any external help is through the ticket prices because it is our main income.
"Therefore we are in this situation where of course the prices are high.
"I am really worried they are high for our supporters. For the visitors, it only happens once per year, so that is less of a concern.
"We sell out our games, but ideally you want ticket prices to be affordable to everybody. It is a very delicate subject.
"It is down to every individual to decide 'Do I spend the money or not to go anywhere to watch anything?'
"If you want to go to a concert tomorrow, you look at the price of a ticket and after if it is too high for you, you say yes or no. That is everybody's individual responsibility."
Arsenal have yet to bring a trophy to the Emirates Stadium, with many supporters bemoaning the lack of consistency and seeing key men sold.
Wenger defended the club when asked whether the Gunners continued to offer value for money, with their season tickets among the most expensive in the top flight.
He said: "How can you measure that? What is very important is that we try to give value for money and that our attitude is absolutely 100% committed to try and achieve that. That is the most important.
"After, everybody can have a different opinion when he comes out of the stadium. Did he get enough for what he has spent? You have to leave that to every individual.
"The only way you can measure that is do people come back or not."
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