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How much will you pay to watch football this Christmas

Festive football costs soar as fans fork out up to £468 to attend matches, Cost of supporting your football club away over Christmas revealed by FSF survey.

Plymouth Argyle fans face the highest cost and most arduous journeys to watch their team over the festive period. This is according to annual research carried out by the Football Supporters’ Federation (FSF), and supported by Virgin Media, into the cost of Christmas football.

The analysis includes ticket, travel and food costs, plus journey times, incurred by supporters of all 92 clubs across the Premier League and English Football League for festive fixtures played between Boxing Day and January 4 2018.

The findings show that Plymouth Argyle fans will spend £468.43 - 11 times more than the lowest costs paid by Morecambe FC fans (£42.89). The Pilgrims will travel more than 1,000 miles to get behind their team at MK Dons on Boxing Day and Blackpool on December 30.

Premier Prices

Overall, the average fan will spend £171.37 to watch their team this Christmas, where supporters of 46 clubs will travel twice to support their teams away. In total, Premier League fans will pay the most (£182.08) to watch top-flight football over the Christmas break.

On top of costs, some fans will have to travel huge distances to attend games across the country. Total distances that will be travelled range from 20 miles (Chelsea away at Arsenal) to 1,096 miles (Plymouth Argyle at MK Dons and Blackpool) taking between 1hr 41mins and 26hrs 47mins respectively.

The findings underpin the FSF’s ‘Twenty’s Plenty’ campaign, backed by Virgin Media, which calls on clubs to cap the cost of an away ticket to £20.
Kevin Miles, Chief Executive, FSF said:

"Despite money being tight around this time of year, supporters will be travelling up and down the country over Christmas and New Year to back their teams in remarkable numbers once again.
"Away fans are a huge part of our match-going tradition and that shouldn't be taken for granted, so clubs and sponsors can and should do more in making football as affordable as possible."
As the official shirt sponsor of Southampton FC, Virgin Media is on the side of fans this Christmas by subsiding Southampton supporters’ coach travel and match-day tickets for the Saints’ game against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium. Crystal Palace fans visiting St Mary’s on January 2 will also have their tickets subsidised to £20 as part of Virgin Media’s ongoing cap on away ticket prices at the stadium.

Key findings from the research:
Cost by League


League

Average cost (per fan)

Highest Cost

Lowest Cost

Premier League

£182.08

Manchester City - £383.63
(Away vs Newcastle United Dec 27 and Crystal Palace Dec 31)

Chelsea - £54.63
(Away vs Arsenal Jan 3)

Championship

£169.47

Fulham - £368.94
(Away vs Cardiff City Dec 26 and Hull City Dec 30)

Sheffield United - £56.88
(Away vs Derby County Jan 1)

League 1

£150.00

Plymouth Argyle - £468.43
(Away vs MK Dons Dec 26 and Blackpool Dec 30)

Gillingham - £43.62
(Away vs Charlton Jan 1)

League 2

£157.14

Luton Town - £342.53
(Away vs Swindon Town Dec 26 and Port Vale Dec 30)

Morecambe  - £42.89
(Away vs Accrington Stanley Jan 1)

Total average:

£171.37

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Distance travelled by League


League

Average driving distance (miles)

Most travel

Least travel

Premier League

372.06

Brighton Hove Albion - 816 miles
(Away vs Chelsea Dec 26 and Newcastle United Dec 30)

Chelsea – 20 miles
(Away vs Arsenal Jan 3)

Championship

358.95

Fulham - 748 miles
(Away vs Cardiff City Dec 26 and Hull City Dec 30)

Sheffield United – 82 miles
(Away vs Derby County Jan 1)

League 1

321.86

Plymouth Argyle - 1,096 miles
(Away vs MK Dons Dec 26 and Blackpool Dec 30)

Gillingham – 59 miles
(Away vs Charlton Jan 1)

League 2

353.37

 

Yeovil Town  - 772 miles
(Away vs Cheltenham Dec 26 and Morecambe Dec 29)

Morecambe - 91 miles
(Away vs Accrington Stanley)

Total average:

360

 

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Match-day ticket costs by League


League

Average match-day ticket cost

Most Expensive Ticket

Cheapest Ticket

Premier League

£29

 

 

 

 

 

£30 price cap

 

 

 

 

 

Southampton FC  – £20
(Away vs Tottenham Hotspur Dec 26)

Crystal Palace - £20
(Away vs Southampton FC Jan 2)

Both subsidised to £20 by Virgin Media

Championship

£27.06

 

Nottingham Forest - £42
(Away vs Leeds United Jan 1)

 

Fulham – £18
(Away vs Hull City Dec 30)

League 1

£22

 

Doncaster Rovers - £28
(Away vs Peterborough United Jan 1)

Rochdale – £10
(Away vs Doncaster Rovers Dec 29)

League 2

£21

 

£24 - All Jan 1
Stevenage vs Cheltenham Town
Yeovil Town vs Crawley Town
Luton Town vs Lincoln City

Wycombe Wanderers - £16
(Away vs Forest Green Rovers Jan 1)

Total average:

£24.61

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