Arsenal Fans Tipped to Boycott Bayern Munich Game over Ticket Prices

Nick Akerman@NakermanFeatured ColumnistFebruary 14, 2014

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 02:  Fans make their way to the ground ahead of the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Crystal Palace at Emirates Stadium on February 2, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Arsenal fans must pay between £62 and £132 to watch their side take on Bayern Munich at the Emirates, a price range that is expected to see many season ticket-holders boycott the Champions League round of 16 first-leg tie on Feb. 19.

As reported by Sami Mokbel of the Daily Mail, the ticket isn't covered by the Gunners' current season ticket packages—as is normal for Premier League teams—but the asking price of the single admission has promoted a response from the club's supporters:

Arsenal Supporters' Trust spokesman Tim Payton said: "We are very concerned. Season-ticket holders have already paid up to £2,000 in advance — the highest in world football. Their commitment deserves better. Arsenal’s grasping approach will have a detrimental effect on the noise in the ground, harming the team’s chances for an important game."

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 19:  Santi Cazorla of Arsenal in action against Philipp Lahm of Bayern Muenchen during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match between Arsenal and Bayern Muenchen at Emirates Stadium on February 19, 2013 in London,
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Tim Payton also suggested Ivan Gazidis' promise of lowering ticket prices are just "empty words." Steven Maxwell, who pays £1,995 for his season ticket, called the club "a girlfriend who doesn't love you back."

With such a busy schedule approaching, many supporters are sure to limit their Emirates outings if the ticket prices remain intact. As noted by Bleacher Report UK, the next six weeks look to be rather expensive for those who wish to follow the north London club all the way:

Back in Jan. 2013, Manchester City fans protested against the £62 price when attending an away match at the Emirates. This incident was made famous by linesman John Brooks, who told the City players to go and applaud their support after paying such a hefty price, as reported by James Andrew of the Daily Mail.

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 13:  Jack Wilshere of Arsenal holds off Javi Garcia of Manchester City during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Emirates Stadium on January 13, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Mike Hewit
Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Brooks was later dropped for his comment, an unfair decision in the eyes of former referee Graham Poll, as written in his column for the same publication.

Arsenal's season ticket prices are the costliest in the Premier League by quite some distance.

As recorded by The Guardian, City's cheapest ticket was £299 heading into the 2013-14 season. Manchester United fans would be set back a minimum of £532, Chelsea fans £595 and Liverpool supporters £710.

Tottenham fans had to pay at least £730 to secure the annual pass, while at the Emirates, Arsenal fans were forced to drop at least £985. Considering this doesn't cover home cup matches, this price significantly increases if Arsene Wenger's men progress through the Capital One Cup, FA Cup and Champions League.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 03:  Arsenal Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis looks on prior to kickoff during the Barclays Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal FC at White Hart Lane on March 3, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Paul Gilham/Ge
Paul Gilham/Getty Images

To put this into perspective, Bayern have opted to pay £24.80 of the travelling fans' £60 ticket when they head to London, as noted in Mokbel's report.

The numbers are even more difficult to take when you consider a Bayern season ticket cost £104 during the club's quintet-winning 2013—a price that wouldn't buy you two tickets at the Emirates throughout one campaign—per Adam Shergold of the Daily Mail.

It is totally understandable why Arsenal fans are set to revolt against such greedy prices. The club is in decent financial health and doesn't need to extort tickets, even for the most anticipated of matches.

A half-empty stadium will hardly improve the Gunners' chances of beating the European champions, suggesting it could be a frustrating night for those involved, and those who opt to stay at home.

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