Standing At The Game
Standing areas at football grounds is a thing many fans want. On 23 September 2011 the STV website published the following PR fluff on behalf of Celtic – Celtic studying feasibility of standing area at Celtic Park . Finally it looked like Celtic would consider investing in a dedicated standing area. They even went as far as inviting Joe O’Rourke , secretary of the Celtic Supporters Association amongst others to attend one company’s demonstration of a system which complied with FIFA/UEFA rules. See pic below:
Finally myself a lot of our support thought we would get the option to stand. We are still waiting.
Before I go off in one I would like to give credit to the Celtic for the great improvements they have managed to bring in over the summer. Better disabled access and areas, a dedicated kids area, full Wi Fi and a pub. You can’t do all that on the cheap. However apart from the improvements for our disabled fans and Wi – Fi which is essential for building future income the other things don’t really add value. Standing areas will.
Like any other improvement in the stadium introducing standing areas will cost us money. What the board need to balance out is money going out in capital investment and eventually returning a profit. That’s the way of the world. However ‘punters through the gates’ will always generate the bulk of our income. That is why I believe offering cheaper standing ticket packages will bring in far more money than a pub.
Fergus was spot on when he paraphrased Ray Kinsella saying “Build it and They Will Come”. Give us really affordable standing areas and more of us will come. The chances are that the greater ‘footfall’ will in turn generate more money via merchandising and food sales. It will also enhance the atmosphere in the stadium which in turn drives on the team.
Celtic are the only viable football club in Scotland, on the downside we are stuck in Scottish football for the foreseeable future. Surely now is the time to entice more people through the gates. A full Celtic Park will kill off most opposition.
And that is a fact !