The Evening Times John McGill waxed lyrical tonight with an article emblazoned ‘500,000 reasons for Rangers to be Cheerful’. Nothing wrong with that I hear you cry. They’ve received an offer of £500k for their entire first team and Charlie is doing cartwheels along Paisley Road West on his way back to Yorkshire. For those unaware Charlie’s a Yorkshireman.
The squad value of £500k is as you all know way overpriced so instead John McGill focuses on every Sevco fans favourite topic this season. Yes, you’ve guessed it, attendances. The article advises their next home game will see Sevco “smash through the half-million barrier in home league attendances”. Again, other than an unhealthy obsession with attendances, no real worry as far as Celtic is concerned. Well, not quite. You see whenever an official or unofficial Sevco publication generates an article on attendances they somehow manage to bring Celtic into the discussion, normally to try and put one over their illustrious Scottish Champion and Champions League last 16 big time city neighbours. Normally, other than for comedy value we wouldn’t take much notice of a newly formed third division team but once our clubs name is brought into the equation to justify some half-baked pro-Sevco article it’s only fair we provide additional facts for completeness so here we go.
Celtic “smashed through” the 500k barrier months ago when you include all home fixtures. In fact we haven’t just “smashed through” the barrier, we’ve continued on our merry way and smashed / broke / demolished several more as so far 785,000 fans have been to Celtic Park this season – Yes, we are closer to the 1m mark than 500k!
Sevco on the other hand have had a total of 663,000 through their gates.
Over 120,000 fewer fans than Celtic having played one game less.
Celtic’s overall average gate is 43,635k per home game. Sevco’s is 39,037.
If you remove domestic cup games from both clubs overall numbers – early round matches very few people are interested in for many obvious reasons – then this makes a rather significant difference. Celtic’s average jumps to 49,420. Almost 3,000 more home fans per game than Sevco. After the Hearts & Juve games in the next few weeks Celtic’s average will be over 50,000 per home game excluding minor cup matches.
We will also “smash through the 500,000 league attendance” barrier ahead of Sevco (don’t let this get in the way of a Sevco good news story though) this weekend when only 35,000 fans is required to do this. As it’s against Hearts and is our first game in a couple of weeks it wouldn’t surprise me if we get around the 50,000 mark.
For clarity, 51,000 would take our ‘league’ average above Sevco’s.
And then for overall completeness it would only be fair to include cost of ticket prices. With Celtic playing in the top league average season ticket prices are in the £550 range. Factor in significant costs for the Champions League adventure and you are talking serious outlay.
Sevco’s travels playing against fishermen, plumbers, joiners and men with full-time jobs outwith football sees a significant reduction in their season ticket cost. £200 will get you one of those or with a sleight of hand and dapper negotiation skills a groupon voucher may just close the deal.
Don’t let Scottish football media agenda laden pish get in the way of reality.