ToonTastic Posted February 17, 2009 Share Posted February 17, 2009 http://www.journallive.co.uk/nufc/newcastle-united-news/2009/02/17/united-to-combat-season-ticket-fears-61634-22942981/ Thought this might interest certain people who are thinking of not renewing for whatever reason next season. NEWCASTLE United are set to respond to the threat of a major drop in season ticket holders next season with a number of initiatives designed to persuade disgruntled supporters to renew. The United hierarchy are so concerned by the prospect of falling attendances at St James’s Park that they will write to every season ticket holder to urge them to stick with the club, despite another disappointing campaign. Although owner Mike Ashley has stabilised the club’s debt with his own money over the last 20 months, his business plan hinges to a large extent on the presumption that the Magpies will continue to have around 40,000 season ticket holders each year. That figure, though, is under significant threat, as a large number of supporters weigh up whether to renew their tickets when there are so many misgivings about Ashley’s regime, and a deepening recession to worry about. A number of Newcastle supporters who signed up for last year’s fixed-price, three-year season ticket scheme have contacted The Journal to ask about whether they can cancel their direct debit payments and escape from the contract. The club are keen to prevent that from happening, and will look to reassure those who believe the club is no longer heading in the right direction with a personal letter from managing director Derek Llambias outlining Ashley’s vision for the future – and pleading with them not to desert the club in such troubled times. peaking to The Journal in an exclusive interview last week, Llambias responded to questions regarding the threat of stay-away fans by claiming the revenue generated will always go straight back into the club. And he added: “Stay with us. Be strong, this is an incredible club and we need you to be behind us. We’re putting our money up front and we need you to support us. “You can’t have it overnight, stay with your team. “You’ve seen uglier football, stick with the team. We will get there.” Whether that plea will be enough to persuade suspicious supporters – still annoyed by a lack of transfer expenditure – not to abandon their season tickets remains to be seen, although it will not be the only measure the club takes to tempt wavering fans. With the credit crunch squeezing ever harder in everyday life, the club also realise they need to offer financial incentives and The Journal has been told prices will be slashed in order to attract people back to the stadium next season. Sunderland and Portsmouth have already announced price cuts for season tickets next season as long as they are renewed before the end of March, and Newcastle are believed to be preparing a similar sort of package. Black Cats fans will save at least £30 on the price of a season ticket if they renew before the April 3 deadline, with children paying just £1 a game if they sign up to the deal with a full paying adult. The details of Newcastle’s special offers are expected to be released later this week. Meanwhile, Newcastle transfer target Stéphane M’Bia has rejected reports he has already agreed a deal to move to Newcastle in the summer. The Magpies had a bid of £8m rejected for the Cameroon international last month, but have retained an interest in the highly-rated Rennes midfielder. Llambias has already revealed that Newcastle intend to bid again for all of their January transfer targets. But M’Bia insists that he will continue to keep his options open until the end of the season. He said: “I have not agreed anything. I made myself clear that I wanted to join a club last season, but Rennes did not let me so I am still here. “I need to finish the season strongly and we will see in the summer.” Link to post Share on other sites More sharing options...
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