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Stoke City Tickets Selling Fast ! But Why Is It Not Sold Out Yet !
Monday, 26th Feb 2018 09:45

In case anyone has forgot we have a game on Saturday that will truly either see us start to pull away from the bottom three or keep us firmly in the mire, tickets are selling fast, but surely they should be sold out by now !

A look at the Saints official club website shows that there are perhaps around 900 tickets lef in the home sections for the visit of Stoke City in a game that is vital to both clubs.

However a look at the Stoke City website shows that they have only taken 2,500 tickets and have not sold them out yet, this means that Saints do have the capacity to put another 800 tickets on sale in the Northam End and possibly more.

But although the home tickets are selling fast, certainly there were twice as many as this available a week ago, surely it should already be a sell out !

There are no excuses not to buy ticket for this one, it is a Saturday 3pm kick off for a start, one big excuse for not going seems to be kick offs at various other times over the weekend

Then there is the fact that it will have been three weeks since our last home match against Liverpool, funnily enough a game that sold out without too much trouble even being on a Sunday afternoon at 4.30pm, I can understand why people would rather see Liverpool than Stoke, but if you want to see Liverpool next season then Stoke is a game we need to win.

Then there is the fact that this will be the last home game for six weeks, we will not play at home again till we meet Chelsea on April 14th, so given that this is the only home game in the middle of a two month period between Liverpool and Chelsea it can't be a financial thing for most.

So why haven't we sold out yet ?

I know what the answer is and that people will moan about Pellegrino, Les Reed, Ralph Krueger, that the club is in chaos and the good old chestnut that they are just not being entertained.

I can understand why people feel that way, but they are excuses for not going not reasons, the old adage is that the Club is bigger than one man etc, now is the time to prove that.

Whatever people feel about Les Reed and Ralph Krueger they have delivered a golden period in our history, four consecutive top 8 finishes, something never achieved before in the club's history, two European campaigns in a row, given that prior to this we had only had seven previous European campaigns in our history, that is an achievement as well.

As is a Wembley cup final for a major trophy, again given that in the modern era since we became a League club, we have only been to 3 Previous major finals, to get to one is not something that we do very often sadly.

But all that is forgotten as Saints struggle and a proportion of the supporters turn their backs on the club and would rather be somewhere else other than supporting their team in their hour of need.

Perhaps its a modern thing, but Leicester City fans have had a lot to moan about in the last season, perhaps more than Saints, yet when they hosted Leicester on Saturday they had almost 32,000 in the ground for a game that in the scheme of things was not that attractive or have much riding on it for the Foxes.

So on Saturday we need a few people to look at their consciences, if they have enjoyed the last few years then it is time to give something back to the club when it needs it.

The team needs a full ground, but more to the point it needs a full ground that is behind the team to a man from the first whistle to the final one, grievances with individuals be they members of the board, the manager or players need to be put aside and we all need to have a common goal and that is three points against Stoke City.

If you can't do that then probably better that you don't go to the game, but as the late great Bill Shankly used to say "If you can't support us when we lose, Don't bother to support us when we win"

Shankly had a point there that most football fans will get, if you don't then perhaps you are following the wrong sport.

I know some will say to this piece, "Change the record" but the fact is I have to keep putting the record on because of the empty seats, I get hacked off when speaking to fans of other clubs they ask why our fans are so fickle, they question why we are not selling the ground out and people are staying away and I'm sick to death of sniggers when I say it's because they are not being entertained.

We like to slag off the Scousers and the Mancs and even theScousers and Mancs that come from Slough, yet they go whatever the results, they tell me it's just what they do, form doesn't come into it, nor does Sunday kick offs etc, they accept that it is part of the game and get on with supporting their club.

We have many fans who are like this, most of them tell me i'm right to berate our fair weather fans, but sadly we do not have enough who do turn out week in week out.

Two years ago some were demanding the stadium be expanded as our support was growing, most of these fans are now staying away, there is an irony there.

So lets fill those remaining seats, turn up on Saturday wth a positive attitude, it is not the fans fault we are in trouble, but we now need to be part of the solution and not the problem.

In a month's time we will possibly be playing in a semi final at Wembley and would then take more fans than can fit into St Mary's, that will be another irony !

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saint68 added 10:29 - Feb 26
"It's time to give something back to the club"

Condescending corporate claptrap.

Support the team ,Yes...but come on Nick!! That piece reads like a veiled threat and a begging letter rolled into one.

And using the Bill Shankley quote is unnecessary and smacks of desperation to label anyone not attending a "Fairweather supporter".

And for balance...people I know and have met whilst working predominantly away from home recently,are more shocked that there isn't more ill-feeling towards the board and manager, and yes they comment on our departure from playing attractive attacking football which we have been admired for in recent years.
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saintpp added 10:40 - Feb 26
well said
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SonicBoom added 10:46 - Feb 26
Scousers and Mancs? You mean the teams that invest billions and are at the top end of the league and rarely lose games? They do also have crowds full of holiday makers and Irish day trippers.
Away from home those clubs are great but even then they have to attend those games or face being removed from lists to get tickets for other games.
Comparing our situation to Liverpool and Manchester clubs is trite.
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AirFlorida added 10:47 - Feb 26
I'm in the minority, but if staying up means watching and signing more overpaid average players (playing under themselves) and watching a manager tactically out if his depth, then I don't want to endure another season with 5 to 7 wins. I want to see my team play good footbal, hunting for goals and playing to/with the fans. I don't mind going down and would welcome another season or two where we win more than we lose and rebuild some momentum (hopefully through our academy) for another up and down stint in the Premier league. More Saturday 3pm games a bonus too. This is the club I've loved and supported since birth and went to all past relegation pressure games (losing 2-1 to Oldham and seeing their 8 fans in an empty away end celebrating; beating Coventry 1-0 on a cold midweek night when we were managerless; those Newcastle games; the 4-2 Liverpool snow game at the Dell.. Etc) but I can't ever remember a point where I've felt less engaged in a relegation battle due to what I'm supporting.
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DorsetIan added 10:52 - Feb 26
I agree that everyone in the ground should do their best to get behind the team - you've paid your money, so you might as well do what you can to support the players...

...but I'm really not sure that there is any duty on a fan to attend a game like this. With one or two exceptions, watching Saints at St Mary's this season has been pretty frustrating/disappointing/painful/depressing. I really hope we can score a few goals and get a win, but more likely is a tense, turgid, cagey affair - which really won't be much fun to watch and which might again see us with a massive sense of anti-climax as we fail to win another 'must win' game. Not really sure you can expect everyone to pay to experience that! That the ground will be nearly full is pretty impressive enough as far as I'm concerned.

Another thought: If fans didn't vote with their feet when they weren't being entertained, what commercial imperative would there be for the club to provide football the fans wanted to watch?



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skiptonsaint added 11:09 - Feb 26
I suspect if MP comes out with some hint that he might play the team that finished against Burnley
Rather than starting a conservative side then the last few tickets would fly out.

I don’t want us to go down and am prepared if we do to carry on going to games but I want us to go down at least giving it a go and being more positive and that’s how I see the fans and players connecting better at St Mary’s.

Draws are not enough especially in the Stoke and Bournemouth home games as we all know and it’s better to win one of those and lose one than 2 draws...but does MP see that ?
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SanMarco added 11:43 - Feb 26
The ground will be full at 3pm on Saturday so does it really matter whether the tickets sell out now tomorrow, or the next day? In this day and age it is easy enough to get a ticket for matches vs the 'big clubs' so it is no surprise that people may have been waiting over a game that will be tense rather than entertaining and played in sub-zero temperatures.

Lecturing people about not buying tickets is like lecturing people about leaving early. We don't exactly live in a 'free country' but we do live in one where such decisions are taken for granted as individual ones. Also the 'marginal' supporters - those who pick and choose games or who might be considered 'fair-weather' may decide to stay in the warm. To say that they shouldn't make that decision is actually meaningless unless you are going to go to their houses and force them to the ground at gunpoint. Of course we all want a stadium full of noisy, enthusiatic supporters but those (not me by the way) who don't attend due to MP, dull football, or whatever are making a decision that is unlikely to respond to lectures...
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SaintNick added 11:50 - Feb 26
Im sorry but in most of the replies above I cannot see anything other than me me me, I will only support the club on my terms and only if they play good football, this news may shock some people but for a large amount of the last 30 years we have been awful, yet some seem to think this season is the worst one ever etc etc.

Excuses about the board and players etc are just that excuses, the board we have now is no worse than any other in the clubs recent history and the players are no different to any others in the past 40 years, here is no loyalty in players to clubs anymore there hasnt been at Saints since we left the Dell

When a club has seasons like this it finds out who its fans are, when the going gets tough the tough get going as they say sadly that isnt the case here

I know where i will be on Saturday, I know I will be behind the team for 90 minutes, I dont claim to be anything other than a Saints supporter and thats what i do nothing more nothing less, my conscience is clear
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bigrob68 added 12:24 - Feb 26
I'm a ST holder and have been for more years than I care to remember, I pay to watch football and support Saints win or lose, I don't pay to watch millionaires who won't try, football is now very expensive and yes we want to see some fight for our hard earned money and to be fair this season has been boring defensive tripe so I fully understand that those without a ST feel they would be wasting their money as they probably already know how we will play on Saturday.
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landsdownsaint added 12:35 - Feb 26
Why shouldn’t supporters be “me me me “ ? The players & the board is !
... football has changed massively in the 30yrs u mention
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Whiteknight added 13:38 - Feb 26
Whilst you do make some valid points, I am increasingly exasperated by your continual criticism of fans at the expense of anyone - even Yoshida. There are several target for criticism:

The absentee owner. The protracted negotiations were a bigger distraction than VVD and Fonte put together. He has had two years to prepare for action yet we have seen none.
The board: They may have overseen many years of improvement but this has dried up in the last year or so (since the League Cup final and arguably even before then). All that comes from the board is ridiculous, meaningless PR speak and not a hint of accountability.
The manager: A team that has lost 11 games this season so far should be comfortably in mid-table. He does not seem to understand that football is about winning games rather than not losing - something even Stone Age and Bronze Age man understands in the film Early Man.
The team: At the moment many of them are basically under-performing and over paid. In any other industry they, together with the manager would be sacked. Very few seem to want to even connect with the fan base in the way that players of old managed to do.

Let me put it to you another way: why should people bother to turn up in the cold and pay a significant amount of money in a toxic atmosphere to watch a crap team who don't seem to give a damn? People's attitudes have changed over the last 30 years - they have more choice now and rather than berate people for exercising their choice, I think you need to think about the causes rather than the symptoms.

Furthermore, in my mind picking on fans is an easy target and is therefore somewhat cowardly if it's not balanced with valid criticism elsewhere.

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Colburn added 14:07 - Feb 26
Sorry Nick, finances are tight so I’m not going to watch more matches when our approach is so negative on the pitch every game! This is why we are in this position and the only way to register your dissatisfaction with this style of approach as a customer is to stop buying the product. I make no apology for this and if we had voted with our feet earlier in the season, the board would have been forced to act professionally and bring in someone who is not an inexperienced cheap option.. Blindly throwing money at an organisation who 2 years ago stated they want to be the next club to challenge the top 5 or 6 clubs and now state we are just a small club is not the way to tell the powers we will not accept mediocrity. Pellegrino, with his negative tactics has wiped away the players confidence and the board seem blind to this. Therefore I won’t be investing any more for now, I’m out!
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SaintNick added 14:26 - Feb 26
Colburn although I applaud your honesty, it is nothing to be proud of to say you are not going to support the club in its hour of need, if you cant afford it then fine, but im sorry I dont see all you have said otherwise, this is the time of need its time for support not desertion.

Kruegers statement was honest as well when he said small club, realistically taking on the big six get harder every year, we can only take them on one way and that is by the path we have followed, or we could follow Palace west brom and everton who just hire the firefighters like Allardyce and just treat water. football is a marathon not a sprint there will always be times when you have to go backwars to go forwards, yet some cant seem to accept that.

Perhaps Krueger got fed up with seeing empty seats and getting zero credit for the last four years so snapped back, be careful what you wish for
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saintmark1976 added 14:48 - Feb 26
Nick. You asked the question and various posters have certainly given you the answers. We all admire your loyality to S F C but on this one perhaps you may just have to find it within yourself to accept other people's point of view? Attempting to lecture others is frankly a non starter.
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skiptonsaint added 16:41 - Feb 26
I think Nick is just trying to break the cycle of negitivity before an absolutely massive game.

he has to be applauded for that. He does put in a hell of a lot of effort with this site which we do all enjoy (ok not so much in the last 12 months almost to the day since the onside goal) but generally

I mentioned before that I think one of the best ways of trying to galvanise the fans before Saturday is to hint as much as possible that we we will attack with fans favourite Sims and Gabbi in from the start

What else can we do to try and create a better atmosphere Saturday ?

Clappers cause a mixed reaction.but what about scarves again ? Recreate Wembley , . what about a free beer if you get in there half an hour before ? Haven’t they done that before ? Any from the club reading this ? By my reckoning allowing for kids and grannies and at cost price that would cost the club about 30grand max. Or half of Fraser Forster weekly wage since the pay rise.

Any other ideas anyone ?

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Colburn added 16:42 - Feb 26
Nick, I never said I was proud. I am a single father with 2 kids. I can afford to buy a ticket but I can only justify spending money to watch a negative manager with negative tactics with a now unambitious board. The writing has been on the wall for some time now in respect of our current manager and form, and yet the club has not acted at all to their mistake with appointing the wrong man for the job..? Maybe if the stadium had been half full against Liverpool then the board would have had to act on this.. So maybe blind loyalty is a major problem to achieving time-effective changes and a reason we are staring at the drop 9 months after our 4th consecutive year in top 8. Maybe Nick you should stick by your original comments about the manager rather than changing your opinion every week on what needs to be done. At least I am sticking with my decision..
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KriSaint added 16:53 - Feb 26
I see rational points from both sides.
I hope we will have a season record complete sell out in the end, as this game truly is an absolute must win game and probably the most winable of our remaining fixtures.
Right now I´m pretty positive. But if Pellegrino and the team turn up with an obviously unchanged, unurgent approach, and we draw or lose, I will probably be very upset (again), but not until then.
6

SAINTSNIL added 17:41 - Feb 26
Afraid I am another one.
Can afford it but have reached a watershed as a 'supporter' 'fan' 'customer' or whatever pigeon hole fits.
Over 50years thick and thin, but now have got far more cynical especially with the clubs pr spin. All been said before but I feel totally disconnected with this present club/team/manager/board et al, and basically premiership football in general. So no more for me either, until, if ever the situation changes. Really used to look forward to the game, but last two years the football and been the sh# in between the pub sessions sandwich!
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oldeastterrace added 21:06 - Feb 26
I am very angry with may things at this club at the moment and I will continue to voice my anger/concerns. However, this Saturday is MASSIVE. We all want Saints to survive this season and for there to be any chance of us succeeding in staying up then we need results in the next four games. For that to happen we need a confidence boosting win this weekend against a side who are BLOODY AWFUL away from home. We HAVE to win this one!!! A win on Saturday and the confidence that will generate could even see us go on and win the FA cup!!! It IF we don't win the Stoke game then i doubt we will get results in the Newcastle, West Ham and Swansea games and we will be practically relegated because even the most optimistic Saints fan cannot expect results from the games after these. I cannot state in words how big Saturdays game is. It really is a GIGANTIC game. I will be pissed off and angry if we don't win on but we need to really create a stunning atmosphere, Lets shock even our own players by upping the volume and making this game the game where saints were re-awakened. If it goes tits up then be angry but AFTER the final whistle!!!
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A1079 added 21:08 - Feb 26
Nick, I completely appreciate what you do on this board and your usual measured assessment of games and situations be they good, bad or otherwise at the club, but I am struggling to understand your seemingly negative and overt criticism of Saints fans. Of course we have a real mix of fans and I will concede that at home, we have been vocally very poor for some time, not just this season but for sometime now.

But, I for one, support this team to the best that I can. I care how they do and what happens at the club and in the team, but whether they are at the top, middle or bottom and even if they were in the champions league, what makes me decide whether to attend a game is down to one single thing - money. If I can, I go to as many games as I can. If I could, I would go to them all. If I could I would take my kids with me every time. It has nothing to do with where they are in the table or what league they are in, it simply comes down to economics.

But, whilst so called stay away fans can be criticised what about our stay away chairman. Where is he and his daughter in our hours of need? Yes, he is a businessman and lives thousands of miles away, but oddly he managed to make it for the Man U game.

I will be there this Saturday (despite it being 480 mile round trip) as I was at Burnley and I have a ticket for Newcastle, but I won't be able to make many more games, whether we are doing well or not. I would like to be and when I cannot make it, I almost feel a sense of guilt and disappointment. I have a daughter coming home from her placement which I am helping to fund.

When you ask why are the fans not buying, there may be many many reasons, but don't assume it isn't because we don't support or love our club. The majority of the fans I have known, may not always get it right but they do care what happens on and off the field. It is in our blood.
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obelisk added 23:04 - Feb 26
What an odd article. It's a while since I gave up my season ticket because the long drives weren't doing much for my health - and neither was much of the football come to that. That didn't stop me going fairly regularly though but this sort of hectoring rubbish puts me right off ever stepping foot in St Mary's again. Fairweather fan indeed, eh? Childish stuff.
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aceofthebase added 13:07 - Feb 28
I agree with Nick! .. and that is not always the case.
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