Fenway Sports Group have reacted to the unprecedented mass walkout during Liverpool’s draw with Sunderland at Anfield on Saturday afternoon by announcing a spectacular climb down over ticket prices.
In a letter addressed to Liverpool supporters from John W. Henry, Tom Werner and Mike Gordon, the owners apologised for the distress caused by plans disclosed last week in relation to the new £114m main stand, where the cost of the most expensive ticket would rise by £18 to £77.
FSG have now decided to scrap that idea, deciding that the highest ticket price will freeze at the current rate of £59 for the next two seasons.
After it seemed season tickets would cross into a new stratosphere as well, crossing the £1,000 barrier for the first time, FSG have backtracked similarly, with the highest prices remaining at £869 and the lowest at £685.
“The three of us have been particularly troubled by the perception that we don’t care about our supporters, that we are greedy, and that we are attempting to extract personal profits at the club’s expense,” a statement read. “Quite the opposite is true.”
It added: “From our first days as owners we have understood that serving as custodians of this incredible institution is a distinct privilege and as such, we have been driven solely by the desire to return LFC to the pinnacle of football. In the world of modern football, growing the club in a sustainable way is essential to realising this objective.”
The letter revealed that FSG were content with the way they had engaged with representatives of Liverpool’s Supporters’ Committee, who reacted to the price structure by calling it “morally unjustifiable.”
However, FSG appeared to admit they had misjudged the delivery of the news by way of clear explanation.
“We believe we have demonstrated a willingness to listen carefully, reconsider our position, and act decisively,” the statement continued. “The unique and sacred relationship between Liverpool Football Club and its supporters has always been foremost in our minds. It represents the heartbeat of this extraordinary football club.”
The more positive elements of the price restructuring will remain in place, with some 10,000 £9 tickets being available across each season, 20,000 tickets available for 17-21 year olds and 1,000 for local school children.