PREMIER LEAGUE fans will shell out £1.3billion this season to follow their teams as increases in home ticket prices, TV subscriptions and merchandise hit their wallets.
A report explored spending by match-going football fans over the past five Premier League seasons, incorporating car and rail travel, merchandise, tickets, in-stadium food and drinks and TV subscriptions.
Football lovers will on average spend £1,888 each this season, with the biggest cost increases being TV subscriptions, merchandise, home tickets and food and beverages.
In the 2019/20 season dedicated supporters are expected to spend more than £23.8million on replica shirts, a 31 per cent increase in total spend since 2014/15.
But while ticket prices make up a significant proportion of this total cost, the overall cost of tickets for a ‘dedicated fan’ has risen only 1 per cent since 2014/15.
The eToro Fan Financial Statement was carried out by multi-asset investment platform eToro in association with KPMG Football Benchmark.
Sky Sports pundit and Manchester United legend Gary Neville said: “Football needs to check itself. There are lots of positives about football.
"The stadiums are better, the quality of play is fantastic, and the atmosphere is far more inclusive, but for me affordability is something that needs to be addressed.
“This report lays out the facts and I hope it will serve as a wake-up call. Football has to stand above other leisure businesses.
“It is more than just a game. It is about community and we need to ensure we are doing all we can not to price fans out of the game.”
To better understand the real cost of fandom, the eToro Fan Financial Statement analysed the spend of football’s most faithful supporters.
The research focuses on the ‘dedicated fan’ – an adult who attends all 19 home matches and travels to at least five away games.
Arsenal are the most expensive team to support with dedicated fans each paying £2,238 per season.
Newcastle United are the only club outside of the traditional 'top six' to feature in the six most expensive clubs to follow.
This is largely due to the increase in season ticket and food and beverage prices, leading to a forecast 4.1 per cent increase in spend year-on-year and a 16.7 per cent increase since 2014.
Travel also plays a part. This season Newcastle United fans will travel 68 per cent more miles by train and 65 per cent more miles by car to away matches, than the average Premier League fan.
Top ten most expensive clubs
Estimated 2019/20 season spend per 'Dedicated Fan'
1. Arsenal – £2,238
2. Newcastle United – £2,124
3. Tottenham Hotspur – £2,113
4. Chelsea – £2,107
5. Liverpool – £2,055
6. AFC Bournemouth – £1,972
7. Southampton – £1,964
8. Manchester United – £1,957
9. Norwich City – £1,930
10. Brighton & Hove Albion – £1,899
Premier League average – £1,888
The eToro Fan Financial Statement looked at whether some supporters get better value for money than others by examining the total spend by dedicated fans last season in relation to the amount of goals scored and points won.
This approach reveals that while dedicated Liverpool fans may spend more versus other fans in the Premier League, they saw good ‘value for money’ based on a low cost per goals scored and points won last season.
Of all the clubs, Manchester City fans got the most entertainment for their money, paying £16.90 per goal and £16.30 per point.
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