This week’s special activity:
Go to your local public library this week and ask them to order a copy of “Making the Arsenal” by Tony Attwood. You don’t have to read it but I would like to get a few more sales as we are coming out with a new edition shortly. (And if you were one of the kind folk who bought a first edition copy, my sincere thanks. Hope you enjoyed it.)
The Independent Manchester United Supporters’ Association (Imusa) has written to members and asked them not to renew their season ticket next season. If you read my previous ruminations you might recall that I was suggesting that Arsenal’s catastrophists might think of doing the same if they are sincere in their anti-Wenger beliefs.
Imusa believes that a significant drop in season ticket sales will force the Glazer’s to listen to potential buyers such as the Red Knight consortium which is being run out of the Goldman Sachs offices (GS themselves being investigated by financial bodies in both the UK and US).
Imusa acknowledges that not all fans will have the courage of their convictions but they ask those who are going to renew to leave it to the last possible day.
They have also called for a complete boycott of all food, drink, shirts,scarves and beach balls – except those in green and yellow.
What is interesting is that while Arsenal are still making big profits, and have lots of dosh to spend Man IOU have little in the way of spare cash because they have first to pay the Glazers who take millions and millions a year, and second they have to pay interest on the £720m debt. While much of that interest has now stopped because of the bond, the bonds have to be repaid one day, and so presumably Man IOU are putting money aside for that great moment.
The bond issue documents showed how much the Glazers will take out of the club every year until 2017. And it was a lot. More in fact. And if people don’t go, then they won’t have money.
Imusa support the view that we have been expressing here for a while that the majority of games at Very Old Trafford (100 this year in fact – “Making the Arsenal” covers the opening of the old place) fail to sell out and tickets are often available elsewhere.
Of course because your average Man IOU fan lives in Surrey, the away tickets are very popular since the grounds are much nearer. But the crafty buggers at Man IOU only let you get the tickets by being a season ticket holder and then entering a ballot. Not a great incentive to Surrey Man.
According to JP Morgan who handle such things at Man IO, “We note that 17,000 people are on the waiting list for Manchester United season tickets. However, this somewhat overstates the demand as we note that no deposits have been paid and many seek specific seats in the stadium.”
So the waiting list at Man IOU is very different from that at the Ems where you have to pay up some money first. Also, (and I can tell you this for sure since it happened to me) if you come to the top of the waiting list, you have to take your ticket/s up there and then at Arsenal, you can’t say, “no I will wait until next year”. If you wait, you slip back down to the bottom, and lose your deposit.
(Incidentally this is so different from how it was under George Graham. I went for a season ticket then, turned up at the ground, and was given a list of a dozen seats in the area I wanted to be in. I was told if none of those were any good they would come back and find me another selection. How times change. Must be something to do with that Wenger fellow).
Anyway, back to Man IOU. A Virgin Money poll in March 2010 said that six out of every 10 United season ticket holders were considering not renewing their season ticket. I am not sure that really tells us very much, but it is interesting that the Catastrophists are, at least at present, not suggesting that everyone who is against Wenger should give up a seat.
Still, just in case you are still reading, here is the poll (straight after the linky type things). The figure on the right is the percentage considering cancelling season tickets.
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