Manchester United hit back in Sevilla ticket price war by charging away fans £89 for Old Trafford match

United will refund £35 of the £89 that their own supporters have been charged by Sevilla

Mark Critchley
Northern Football Correspondent
Wednesday 10 January 2018 13:24 GMT
Manchester United could not persuade Sevilla to lower their prices in discussions between the two clubs
Manchester United could not persuade Sevilla to lower their prices in discussions between the two clubs (Getty)

Manchester United will charge Sevilla supporters £89 to attend their side’s Champions League last-16 match at Old Trafford in March and use the money raised to refund their own supporters.

Sevilla were heavily criticised in December when it was revealed that United fans travelling to the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on 21 February would be forced to pay between £89 and £133 for a ticket in the away end.

The £89 minimum price, described as “exorbitant” by the Manchester United Supporters’ Trust at the time, is significantly more than that paid by Liverpool fans, who were charged £54 to watch their side face Sevilla in competition’s group stages in November.

United attempted to persuade Sevilla to lower their prices but discussions between the two clubs failed to lead to a significant reduction.

In a letter to supporters on Tuesday, United said: “We have taken the difficult decision to charge Sevilla fans for the return leg at Old Trafford the same amount as our fans have been charged for the away fixture.”

United plan to reimburse their own supporters attending the away match to the tune of £35, the difference between Sevilla’s £89 ticket charge and the £54 paid by Liverpool fans. Any additional revenue gained from the increased charge will be donated to the Manchester United Foundation.

“We want this to act as a deterrent to future opponents who look to increase ticket prices for our travelling supporters,” the United letter added.

Sevilla later responded by announcing that they too would subsidise their own supporters’ tickets, ensuring no fan of theirs travelling to Old Trafford on 13 March will pay more than €60 (£53).

The Andalusian club will also lodge a complaint with European football’s governing body Uefa regarding their allocation of 2,995 for the March fixture, claiming the figure represents only 4.1 percent of the stadium’s capacity.

Champions League rules state that home sides must make 5 per cent of the seats available to visiting fans.

Earlier on Tuesday, The Football Supporters Federation, which represents football fans in England and Wales, lamented a price war that risks leaving innocent supporters “caught in the crossfire” and called on Uefa to revise rules around away ticket pricing.

An FSF spokesperson told The Independent: “Manchester United fans will be pleased to hear that the club has fought their corner in relation to the extortionate £89 prices which Sevilla have set.

“That Sevilla thought they could get away with this in the first place highlights the weakness of Uefa’s rules which are meant to protect away fans.

“Uefa need to step in and revise those rules now so that innocent fans are not caught in the crossfire between clubs. Spanish fans no more set their club’s prices than British fans set their club’s pricing – supporters are collateral damage in this instance.

“Sevilla have it within their power to fix this mess by reducing tickets costs for visiting fans in which case Manchester United would be expected to reciprocate.”

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