What are the people from Middlesbrough FC, doing about the attendances?

As an ex Middlesbrough player and a fan, I was embarrassed when I sat down to watch the Middlesbrough v Watford game and witnessed the amount of empty seats inside the Riverside Stadium.
The official attendance came out as over 14,000, your lucky if there was 10,000 there.
So where have the fans gone? We are playing good football, winning games and sitting in 3rd position in the championship. Without a doubt Mogga and the team are doing their bit to attract, but I must ask what are the people behind the scenes doing? In the last few years a lot of local, loyal, enthusiastic people, have lost their jobs and have been replaced with new kids on the block, people from outside the area who are employed to turn the clubs commercial and marketing fortunes around. As it stands today, I don’t see a flicker of change or evidence of this. What are these people doing to attract the missing 1,000’s, how are they looking to rope them in?
When I look up the road at our rivals Newcastle and Sunderland, we seem to be set in our ways compared with them, stagnant and stale,no ideas coming out, PR is poor, communication with the fans is non existent. Not so long ago the then Sunderland chairman Niall Quinn, went round the pubs and clubs of Sunderland answering fans questions and came on as a guest,on the Three Legends radio show a few times. He also gave more reasoning as to why he wants people back into the stadium, he said it wasn’t about the money, there was a bigger plan, the globalisation of the club. He went on to say, a full ground every week makes Sunderland a million times more attractive to the foreign market. Don’t forget Quinny was doing this when the crowds were nearly over 40,000.
Newcastle United who are sitting 3rd in the premier league, despite getting 45,000 fans, exploited their terrific start to the campaign by tempting fans back with cut price tickets, season ticket holders were able to by more tickets at a discount of 50%. Since the deal I am lead to believe they have sold a further 4,500 tickets. A standard ticket for St James is £558, now season ticket holders can purchase another ticket for just £207, that works out at £15 per game, a fantastic offer.
I have asked the Boro fans via radio, website,twitter and Facebook for their suggestions. The majority have forwarded letters with ideas to the football club, I am lead to believe that none of them have received a response, theres a surprise.
Let’s take a leaf out of our rivals books, do discounted ticket deals, let’s get people from the football club going around the pubs and clubs, mixing with the supporters, having pictures taken signing autographs, building up a relationship and trying to entice the stay away fans back, it might not work but at least they will have had a go. Don’t forget a lot of these fans have mbeen mistreated over the years, taken for granted. Well it is time for the people at the club to go cap in hand.
I have always believed PR stands for public relations, at our club it should be poor relations.

2 Responses to “What are the people from Middlesbrough FC, doing about the attendances?”

  1. I just hope to god, for the future of the club that someone that works for the football club reads and takes notice of what you have just said bernie. Because something seriously needs to be done about the low attendances. like you i watched the match against watford on the telly, would much rather of been at the stadium instead, but like most other supporters we just cant afford it. I mentioned last night that i have been to 5 home and 1 away this season, an thats a poor standard for a supporter that loves middlesbrough football club. never want to miss a match but, these days i just cant affored £22 plus drinks and program, food ect. it adds upto over £100 at the end of the day. So lets just hope that mr gibson starsts to do something about it to bring us all back to support our club that we all love !!!

  2. sfboro says:

    Hi Bernie,

    You seem very negative towards to Boro nowadays. I listen to the Legends via the internet as I live in the USA and you seem to have it in for Middlesbrough Football Club.

    You were embarrassed watching the last match but what about all the matches you could of gone to but you haven’t actually gone to yourself? That’s the problem Bernie is that people like you complain but you don’t go yourself. Yes, you are a fan you can’t be bothered going to the matches so why shouldn’t the others not go?

    I understand you work but not every game the Boro have played you have worked.

    Don’t compare the Boro to Newcastle and Sunderland as they both have a bigger fanbase then us.

    I’m just wondering if you discount your book you are selling if the person is unemployed?

    It’s all very easy to criticize the club when you don’t know the facts. Yes, it would be fantastic if the Riverside was full every home game. Remember, when you commentated on over 500 plus games you didn’t pay to get in but thousands did, including me.

    Times are very hard and yes Mr. Gibson could give free tickets to school children, discounted ticket prices to the unemployed but what about all the fans whom have paid full price? I’m sure the club are looking into to problems and fresh ideas but because they don’t consult me I’ll wait until something happens.

    Just remember Bernie, people have other interests nowadays and even though they love football still, it’s just too expensive. Could you suggest how much tickets should be and who gets free tickets and then work how to pay the match day staff, pay the bills and all the other things which because I’m not Mr Gibson I can’t answer?

    Does that mean that all businesses in Middlesbrough should lower their prices and let people in for free or is it just the football club should do it?

    On a side note Bernie, I still enjoy your opinions and the other two.



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