Football Fans 'Struggling To Meet Rising Costs'

by Abbi Rouse - Date: 2007-09-06 - Word Count: 528 Share This!

Britons are learning that "life is getting more difficult" when it comes to juggling their finances, a survey from Virgin Money has revealed.

The announcement comes as the financial services firm reports that the surging cost of attending football matches is causing fewer fans to go to live games. According to the company, increasing expenses will see about one in ten (nine per cent) Premiership supporters reduce how many times they will get behind their team in person, as they face rising pressure on areas of their finances such as credit cards and personal loans.

Overall, Middlesbrough and Chelsea fans are said to be the most apathetic in watching live games as 24 and 19 per cent of supporters from these clubs claim that they will not be attending their respective stadiums as much. Blackburn Rovers fans on the other hand, are least likely to reduce their attendance to matches as there are only two per cent that are considering attending less games.

Meanwhile, consumers are reported to be "feeling the pinch" as they start to feel the effects of five base rate rises by the Bank of England since August 2006. And with a decrease in disposable income noted, in addition to a rise in football-related costs, the company suggests that attendances could be set to dwindle more in the future as less money is spent on merchandise.

John Franklin, spokesperson for Virgin Money, said: "The ordinary football fan is up against it this year. While it's true that some clubs have frozen or even reduced ticket prices, our analysis shows that the overall cost of following your team continues to rise. And while perhaps last season fans were able to ride the storm thanks to some favourable market conditions, the effects of five interest rate rises will make life very difficult for many. Financially life is getting tougher, but dedicated fans won't want to sacrifice following their team as a result."

Virgin Money's announcement comes as its latest Football Fans Price Index reveals that the cost of attending matches has increased by 22 per cent since February last year. The 'match day expenditure' including tickets, and programmes etc was reported to cost 77.95p eighteen months ago. This figure has now risen to 95 pounds 08p mainly as a result of the increase in cost of a replica shirt.

Malcolm Clarke, chair of the Football Supporters Federation, added: "Virgin Money's survey shows again what any fan in this country knows. The cost of watching football here is still at ludicrous levels." He pointed out that financial pressures on attending games on the continent in countries such as Italy, Spain and Germany is much lower as fans abroad are able to take advantage of cheaper match tickets and reduced public transport.

However, those adamant about supporting their team in the face of rising costs may wish to apply for a cheap personal loan as a means of financing such expenses. Earlier this year, Frances Walker, spokesperson for the Consumer Credit Counselling Service, claimed that although the majority of people who borrow do so wisely, more consumers need to take a sensible approach to the money they have received.

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Related Tags: costs, football, to, fans, meet, rising, struggling

Abbi Rouse writes for All About Loans where visitors can apply online for cheap loans. We also specialise in bad credit loans, and debt consolidation. Vist Today: Your Article Search Directory : Find in Articles

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