Having conducted their annual study of ticket and other matchday costs, the BBC’s 2016 Price of Football study was released today and finds Liverpool on average to be slightly more expensive than the Premier League norm when it comes to the matchday experience.
The BBC looked at 224 clubs in the United Kingdom and a further 23 in Europe, detailing single match and season ticket costs, replica shirt costs, and food and beverage costs. The two headlining numbers for most will be single match and season tickets, and in both cases Liverpool have noteworthy numbers.
The club’s small pool of £9 single match tickets allows them to claim the lowest single match ticket cost of any club in the Premier League. On the other hand, the cheapest season ticket cost of £685 is 45% above the league average.
However, the good news at least is that is down from over £700 two seasons ago, meaning that while the cheapest season ticket at Liverpool remains well above the league average, it’s not as high as it used to be. It also isn’t as high as the cheapest season ticket for Tottenham, Chelsea, or Arsenal.
Amongst the top six sides, Liverpool stand fourth. Behind them are Manchester City, whose oil money and relative lack of popularity ensures the fourth-lowest cheapest season ticket in the league. Meanwhile, Manchester United are sixth most costly, cheaper than Liverpool in part due to a stadium that seats 76,000.
That, at least, would be the positive spin—that City don’t have the demand or drawing power, and that United have a much larger stadium even than an expanded Anfield. The negative spin would be that Liverpool are the most expensive season ticket outside of London.
Whichever way you come at it, though, it seems fair to say that Liverpool ticket prices carry with them the expectation that Liverpool should be a top four side rather than the borderline top six side they actually have been for much of their recent history.
Become a Champions League fixture once again and semi-regularly challenge for the title, and those ticket costs aren’t likely to cause a great deal of controversy. Struggle to consistently qualify for the Europa League, and the fourth highest season ticket cost is rather difficult to swallow.
Other findings of the BBC study include that Liverpool’s adult shirt costs fans 1% more than average, a programme costs £0.15 more than average, and a pie costs £0.09 less than average. The club also give 1,000 tickets to local schoolchildren for free.