by Lewis Ambrose
It’s all well and good providing sponsors and the ‘football family’ with tickets to a game, but The FA are taking the mick a little bit when a club as big as Arsenal are only given 25,000 tickets for both the FA Cup Final AND the Community Shield.
The FA released details on the Community Shield on Tuesday, and it has been confirmed that the game between Arsenal and Chelsea will take place on 2nd August at 3pm (BST).
They also confirmed the ticket allocations for the game, and once again the two clubs participating in the match will share 50,000 tickets despite the national stadium having a capacity of approximately 90,000.
Arsenal have now had disappointing allocations for FA Cup semi-final, final, and the Community Shield once again despite chief executive Ivan Gazidis speaking out against The FA and lobbying for fairer distribution.
Gazidis first complained ahead of the 2014 FA Cup Final against Hull City and criticised The FA once again ahead of the semi-final against Reading earlier this year.
“Similar to our experiences from last season’s FA Cup competition, we are once again very disappointed with this allocation.
“With the capacity of Wembley Stadium being approximately 90,000, the club does not agree with this relatively small proportion of tickets being given to both clubs,” said Gazidis back in March.
“We will continue our dialogue with the FA in order to obtain as many tickets as possible for this match, but it is clear that many of our loyal supporters, who follow the team home and away, including our approximate 45,000 season ticket holders, will not be able to obtain a ticket for this huge match.”
Why can’t The FA select one game or the other?
If they want to give away 50,000 tickets that’s just great (it isn’t, it’s ridiculous) but doing it for four games a season is unneccesary.
The FA Cup Final back in May saw hundreds of tickets available to buy online for extortionate prices, so the tickets that fans of either clubs are being kept from aren’t even going to people using them.
Arsenal have 45,000 season ticket holders and this situation is beyond farcical. The entire process needs to be looked at.
A rare improvement is in the prices which, like last year, remain fair. Unlike the FA Cup Final tickets for this game are reasonably priced and affordable, with the cost ranging from £20-£40 depending on where you sit.
The season opener sees Arsenal play Chelsea, who have been awarded the same allocation, after the sides won the FA Cup and Premier League respectively last season.
Arsene Wenger’s men will be hoping to win the showpiece for the second consecutive season following a 3-0 win over Manchester City last year.
It’s just a shame more fans won’t be there to see it.