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dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:03
A letter to Gibbo

Dear Steve/Keith

On the subject of falling attendences… Lets get this in perspective.

We live in an area with an average income per household of £18,000. The government takes 28% of this in tax and national insurance before we see a penny of it…

Lets do this weekly shall we… that’s 270 quid a week to live on… and lets base this on the norm of a married family with one child.

The average mortgage payment in Teesside is £74 per week… (that leaves us with £196)

Average expenditure on petrol is £17 a week (179)

Groceries £43 (136)

Council tax £17 (119)

Car Loan £12 (107)

Clothing £8 (99)

Heating and lighting £20 (79)

Yes that’s right….. Jo average has 79 quid a week left in his pocket as disposable income, and that’s before he has played any sport himself, saved for a holiday, saved for Christmas, bought flowers for his wife, took his kid to the jersey farm, ordered a take away or lifted a single pint to his lips…

Now, if this fella was to take his son to watch Middlesbrough against, say, Newcastle it would cost him the thick end of 60 pounds sterling. I know the season doesn’t last the full year, but let’s say an average of two home games a month including cup runs… this will cost our local hero 30 quid a week, every week of the year to watch, what is essentially, just a game. It’s not feedng his kids, having a family holiday, buying his son a new pair of trainers. It’s watching people kick a ball around, and in the balance of things, there are bigger fish to fry.

It doesn’t take a hybrid of Gordon Brown and Sherlock Holmes to tell you, that in today’s UK, with the cost of living rises we have seen in the last five years, Joe average simply does not have the money. Of those 22,000 faithful fans in the ground against Birmingham, more than half would have gone into debt at the bank to get there. You can’t rely on that for long.

Mr Gibson blaming everything from ex players bad attitudes to the brand of football on display for falling crowds is nothing short of blind ignorance. I predict the year on year attendances will continue to drop until somebody wises up and halves the price of a family day at the match.

captain5 Posted on 10/9 16:05
re: A letter to Gibbo

You're probably right, but that's as simplistic as what you're criticising Gibson for.

littledick Posted on 10/9 16:06
re: A letter to Gibbo

It's Steve Gibson, not Steve/Keith

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

As a boro fan for 25 years, I love Steve Gibson as much as anyone for the turnm around of teh club... but I think he has spent far too much time surrounded by millionaires to remember where he came from.

Prem clubs are getting 60M a season in TV rights now... thats 9 times what gibbo takes in gate receipts. It about time he gave us a break. Full stadiums win games. 12th man and all that.

maidenhead_red Posted on 10/9 16:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

where is the jersey farm, i want to take my kids next time i am visiting the area ?

mf_c Posted on 10/9 16:10
re: A letter to Gibbo

"The average mortgage payment in Teesside is £74 per week… (that leaves us with £196)
Average expenditure on petrol is £17 a week (179)
Groceries £43 (136)
Council tax £17 (119)
Car Loan £12 (107)
Clothing £8 (99)
Heating and lighting £20 (79)"

Can I please move here ?? I'd save a fortune !

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:11
re: A letter to Gibbo

Jersey... :)

Dunno mate, try Google Earth.

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:12
re: A letter to Gibbo

It's averages. Takes account of everyone from the unemployed to Mido.

skiprat Posted on 10/9 16:13
re: A letter to Gibbo

Middlesbrough is obviously the only place where people have to pay mortgages and have low wages with us having the biggest drop in fans in the division.

foomanboro Posted on 10/9 16:13
re: A letter to Gibbo

Some good points but i think you need to lose some of the aggression in the email to get your point across better.

Using phrases like...

"It doesn’t take a hybrid of Gordon Brown and Sherlock Holmes" - sounds condescending


"nothing short of blind ignorance" - is just plain insulting

Like i said some good points but needs to be less emotive to be taken seriously.

holgateoldskool Posted on 10/9 16:15
re: A letter to Gibbo

£43 a week on Groceries ???!!! Burgers, Beans and Bangers rule - OK ??

Jesus, I must eat very well !!!!!

Gooks_Dong Posted on 10/9 16:15
re: A letter to Gibbo

A well thought out piece, but arent you missing the point, ie arent those the same conditions (in relative terms) as last season, apart from maybe a 0.5% mortgage incerease (Which would be about a fiver a month based on your mortgage assumption)

smallmindedcranks Posted on 10/9 16:15
re: A letter to Gibbo

1. The season ticket price has been frozen for three, yes, three seasons now. Any attempt by those people who have not renewed to blame rising tickets prices are talking out of there arse.

2. If you have a problem spending your 'hard earned money' on the Boro, then either stand up to your other half for a change or get a better paid job and stop whinging.

3. Forget point 2, the vast majority of none renewers who are making excuses about ticket prices are highly likely to be the same ones who pay good money to boo our team, your not welcome anyway as far as I am concerned.

The atmosphere has improved without your negativity, so let her indoors boss you about, go back to whatever you moaned about before football became fashionable for a while.

--- Post edited by smallmindedcranks on 10/9 16:29 ---

PV86 Posted on 10/9 16:17
re: A letter to Gibbo

Sell the car.

sasboro Posted on 10/9 16:20
re: A letter to Gibbo

ask him what the "with us or against us" means

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:20
re: A letter to Gibbo

I think Boro has been one of the worst affected areas for the increase in cost of living, yes.

Saleries in Teeside have hardley moved at all, and its still one of the lowest paid areas of the coutry with comperable house prices. So, indeed I do think we are worse of as a consequence, than say, Newcastle.

Big cities have a greater number of people with disposable income than towns. Big cities create better paid jobs.

And why cant I be condescending to the 'Great Gibbo In the Sky'. I feel he speak to us like blinkered idiots half the time with all the spin and PR.

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:24
re: A letter to Gibbo

smallmidedcranks.... fitting name... knob.

My point is that every year you will loose fans as a consequence of social change... i.e. the young single lads who were tha mainstay of the Holgate 15 year ago are all married off and have more pressing responsibilities.

You will loose fans. Fact of life. But you have got to tempt new ones in. Espaecially occasional. People just won't go at the drop of a hat cas it simply costs too much...

Jesus... How can people even think to argue against the fact... it the thick end of 50 quid every time you sit down!!!

When did this become acceptable?

skiprat Posted on 10/9 16:26
re: A letter to Gibbo

The difference is that a letter/email written in a more professional manner might have kept their attention for more than one second which is all this one is worth to someone reading it.

bandito Posted on 10/9 16:28
re: A letter to Gibbo

I think principally you are correct. Jo avearge is being priced out, however, it's an isolated situation. Steve Gibson doesnt give a flying what you pay for your mortgage or where you take your kids. He'll probably mutter something under his breath along the lines of gerraberrajob

Gooks_Dong Posted on 10/9 16:29
re: A letter to Gibbo

dibs, your argument is flawed mate, why talk about the Holgate 15 years ago, we were getting 8k.

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:29
re: A letter to Gibbo

Away skiprat... as if he'd read anything we'd print?

I was merely making a emotive point, who gives a toss if it was professional enough for you?

skiprat Posted on 10/9 16:31
re: A letter to Gibbo

Because with all honesty, if it was me reading that it'd been in my deleted items quicker than it took me to open Outlook and read it.

Condescending the reader isn't the best way to get them to listen to your points.

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:32
re: A letter to Gibbo

gooks dong...

I could get in for pocket money back then.

My point exactly. The Holgate was a tenner for a dad and his kid... its six times that now...

8 grand to 18 in income is only just over double.

Did you do any maths at school?

Do you really think 60 quid for a family day out is justfiable every second weekend?

PV86 Posted on 10/9 16:33
re: A letter to Gibbo

£50? I keep making the point: Season Ticket is £390 = £20/game

Or save up £1.07 per day x 365 = £390

Can you afford £1.07/day? £7.49/week? Pack in the fags. Get a job as a part time barman. Drink less beer. IF you want to go, you find the means. If you dont want to go, then fair do's. But everyone can afford £7/week. I've been there!

sasboro Posted on 10/9 16:35
re: A letter to Gibbo

dibs72 take no notice skiprat, he doesnt read anything that criticises the club. he probably didnt even read it

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:36
re: A letter to Gibbo

Skip rat...

My work includes conversing with clients on multi million pound projects every day. I do not need a lesson in written diplomacy. I have no intention of actaully sending the letter... I was speaking from the heart on a subject that confounds me.

captain5 Posted on 10/9 16:37
re: A letter to Gibbo

Well, you didn't explain that.

maidenhead_red Posted on 10/9 16:39
re: A letter to Gibbo

dibs - I looked up jersey farm on google, and i must admit, if money is tight, why take your kids there, it seems like a expensive place to take your kids, i think they would be just as happy with a macdonalds happy meal, ask lisboa to send you some free vouchers.

Link: linky

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:39
re: A letter to Gibbo


You sound like a sky TV salesman.

The cost includes getting there, buting a pint and a pie and taking a kid.

Christ! If everyone on here don't care about 50 quid ill start the charity of me and ask you all to contribute. (which is basically what Viduka did)

Gooks_Dong Posted on 10/9 16:40
re: A letter to Gibbo

Dibs, your missing my point .... the Riverside was full 2/3 seasons ago, what you need to be asking is where they have gone, not where the Holgate croed have gone

Yes I dids do maths at school, oh and college, oh and with Accountancy at Uni... your condescending attitude is why people are not taking your argument seriously ... and nor would Gibbo

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:42
re: A letter to Gibbo

apologies dong... no offence meant...

The crowds have gone cos we are shte. If it was a tenner a head there would be more poeple willing to come and watch the shte.


Captain_Moonlight Posted on 10/9 16:42
re: A letter to Gibbo

if you love the boro you shell out your 460 biffs in june without considering other stuff. save, scrape whatever.

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:43
re: A letter to Gibbo

captain moonlight...

You shouldn't have to.

TeessiderSeasider Posted on 10/9 16:44
re: A letter to Gibbo

And for £50 a family of four can have a few drinks, sommat to eat and taxi home if it isnt walking disance- AND have watched the game on the big screens too !

Doesent take a genius to work it out

We have a family day out every game - home and away

Gooks_Dong Posted on 10/9 16:44
re: A letter to Gibbo

No offence taken, but now its cos the footaball is shte not its too expensive, your confusing me what your argument is.

Fact remains, yes football is an expensive hobby nowadays, but I can list 10 other things at the drop of a hat which also contribute to falling attendances

tacker Posted on 10/9 16:45
re: A letter to Gibbo

I don't see why people bring out the 'priced out' argument with the Boro. We've got one of the cheapest Season tickets in the League, which gives a great difference to those who pay match by match. Even still, those who go match by match only pay £30, which is not THAT expensive, for Premier League football.

I didn't renew this Season because I couldn't afford the £390 during the Summer, I wasn't "priced out", I'm just lousy at saving money.

dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:47
re: A letter to Gibbo

TS... thank god someone agrees at last.. good point.

GD... see sense. see above....

North_sea_tiger Posted on 10/9 16:48
re: A letter to Gibbo

My son went to Hertha Berlin v Wolfsburg in the olympic stadium in Berlin weekend before last and the tickets were 9 euros.

fourseasons_layabout Posted on 10/9 16:50
re: A letter to Gibbo

We would all like to see a fall in ticket prices but lets be realistic, it aint gona happen. At 21 ive spent the last 3 years living as a student in leeds with zero disposable income yet ive still maintained my season ticket. Like someone else posted, sacrifices have to be made if you want to support the team it just depends how much you care. Im not buying the quality football comments cos every team has poor performances and Id say we are a dam site better off than lots of other teams in the league.

sasboro Posted on 10/9 16:51
re: A letter to Gibbo

tacker, what about wigan,boltons and blackburn..they might be cheaper

PV86 Posted on 10/9 17:00
re: A letter to Gibbo

When I was on the dole I used to cycle to Ayrsome, when i couldnt cadge a lift. What was important was going to the game. I dug peoples gardens for the entrance money.

I agree modern football is expensive, but Boro is not unaffordable. £7/week. People simply choose to spend their money on other things.

sasboro Posted on 10/9 17:02
re: A letter to Gibbo

yeah just dont get a tv licence for 4 years or get rid of sky tv, interent or your mobile phone.. or dont buy sandwiches at work

PV86 Posted on 10/9 17:10
re: A letter to Gibbo

tv licence for 4 years DONT BE SILLY
or get rid of sky tv, OF COURSE!
interent DONT NEED IT
or your mobile phone..DONT NEED IT
or dont buy sandwiches at work TAKE PACKED LUNCH.


sasboro Posted on 10/9 17:12
re: A letter to Gibbo

cut down on how many pairs of jean, trainers and underwear you have.
just have 1 pair of jeans.

or get your haircut only twice a year

PV86 Posted on 10/9 17:20
re: A letter to Gibbo

Fuk me sas u must be tight for money, if you cant afford 2 pairs of jeans from Tesco at £3 each. Let me buy you a pair.

They look class as well ;o)

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 10/9 17:48
re: A letter to Gibbo

1995. Club spend £10m on a young England striker and a Brazilian world star. It costs a dad and a a lad £16 for north stand tickets. They follow that up with another Brazian star and the sorer of the winning goal in the European Cup Final.

2007. Club spend £6m on an Egyptian journeyman. £2m on an Arsenal reserve. and7m on an England centre half. £5m on a Portsmouth squad player. Sell a top striker for £11m. It costs a dad and a lad about 3 times that amount for north stand tickets for the next match (not sure of the lads ticket price).

For me, that's quite an increase in the ticket cost without an equivalent leap in investment, and that's without including the far higher TV receipts. Back then, ticket receipts accounted for 60% of the revenue, now it's 25% to 30%.

We've had success, not arguing with that, but we've also had a drop in the entertainment value. We've had one good one, and it was very good, this season.

We speculated and accumulated in the mid 90's, so why not in the middle of this decade?

sasboro Posted on 10/9 18:07
re: A letter to Gibbo

not saying gibson is creaming any money off for other business ventures but how come the football was so chepaer 10 years ago, spent the same in transfers and the wage bill was probably no more than it is now. whats happening to the £30m+ tv money. back then they had the extra expense of paying for the ground too.

the premier league is getting nearly £1 billion a year from tv... thats nearly an average of £50m per team give or take people creaming it off along the way

HolgateEnd Posted on 10/9 20:58
re: A letter to Gibbo

This thing has been done to death now. My opinion, for what its worth, is that you should tidy the letter up and send it off. Its a bit patronising in the way you originally wrote it.

Secondly, I really believe that the quality of football will bring the fans back, not reducing the prices. At the minute, people think its expensive because they havent been getting entertained, which means zero value for money. Between 95-98 the football was always exciting, we had pace and flair players, even our shyte defence helped to make it exciting. Despite being our most successful manager ever, McClaren made boro worse than watching paint dry. This poor, defensive, boring football made people take notice of what they were spending against how bored they were for 80% of the season.

Now that Southgate seems to be putting a young team together who are committed to attacking for most of the game with pace and flair, I think people will become attracted to the match again, and will therefore start to come back. Hopefully.

Generally, if a person is having fun, they are much less likely to take note of what it's costing them, and are more likely to spend more money having that fun.

boro74 Posted on 10/9 21:31
re: A letter to Gibbo

It's true that football is overpriced for the average working man. But Gibbo is not bothered about that. There are enough people on Teesside that can afford those prices. As proven in the past with average gates of over 30000. Gibbo's aim is to bring those fans back or replace them with similar. It's not his aim to fill the ground using cut price tickets and thus losing revenue.

dibzzz Posted on 10/9 21:46
re: A letter to Gibbo

Not the working class/mans game anymore is it?

DowningsDad Posted on 11/9 7:12
re: A letter to Gibbo

You miss the point completely, it is not about averages. There are plenty of people with far more disposable incomes than that.

We dont want low life poor scum to go to games. Football is for the more affluent person who can afford it.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 11/9 7:51
re: A letter to Gibbo

Perhaps they don't want to sit alongside morons such as yourself.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 8:30
re: A letter to Gibbo

If you exclude the working man you exclude the history and soul of the club. Wasn't that the point of the new badge? To show our heritage?

Well, our heritage comes from the people who lived round Ayresome and openend their front doors on a saturday afternoon and walked to the match. I wonder how many of them appear in the ground week in week out in 2007?

The vast majority of 'fans' today didn't watch football back then, and I'm not suprised it was a passing phase.

Sure, it has something to do with the McLaren brand of football, and sure it may have something to do with local negativity fueled by the radio (though i personally doubt it).

The single defining factor in declining gate reciepts is that it's more accessable and affordable to watch it at home for 80% of the local population.

skiprat Posted on 11/9 10:29
re: A letter to Gibbo

Contrary to what Sas thinks, I did read your letter and agree with the sentiments of it, but my point was that you can't address letters as you did (when it seemed thats what you sent) and expect people to take any notice of it.

As I said earlier though, not many other place seem to be struggling with crowds as much as us, but it's not like we are the only place in the country with low wages and high(er) mortgages.

So do we have maverick fans, going against the grain of society and showing all these Premiership clubs that we won't be ripped off, or do we have cheap fans that expect the World from the club in the transfer market but won't back it with their own cash.

Piquet Posted on 11/9 10:35
re: A letter to Gibbo

We are an area of 'migrants' Irish, Scottish, Scouse, etc only have to be a regular reader of this board to realise there are a lot of second generation Celtic/Rangers fans here. I think boro are a second team to a lot of people.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 11/9 10:36
re: A letter to Gibbo

We have fans with an ability to make their own minds up. They're not being swayed by the bull coming from either the ra-ra's or the club.

BoroDancer Posted on 11/9 10:44
re: A letter to Gibbo

"dibs72 Posted on 10/9 16:24
re: A letter to Gibbo

Jesus... How can people even think to argue against the fact... it the thick end of 50 quid every time you sit down!!!"

If you have a season ticket like I do its only £20 per game.

skiprat Posted on 11/9 10:48
re: A letter to Gibbo

I don't think everyone has took the stand that you have Corcaigh, I think a number just want to have it as cheap as possible and watch it in the pubs.

That's their choice and fair play but I'd rather people came out and just said that instead of making 101 excuses to quantify why they don't go such as it being "£50 before you've even sat down", which is absolute rubbish.

I'm fooking sick of reading about it to be honest, if people don't want to go then don't. Just don't bleat on about it all day fookin long. I'm enjoying the matchdays better without the whining number of people there anyway.

--- Post edited by skiprat on 11/9 10:48 ---

--- Post edited by skiprat on 11/9 10:49 ---

BoroDancer Posted on 11/9 10:50
re: A letter to Gibbo

What he said ^^^

sasboro Posted on 11/9 10:53
re: A letter to Gibbo

Still plenty of £31-£40 tickets left for sunderland apparently

gazzastrip Posted on 11/9 10:55
re: A letter to Gibbo

My guess is that Gibbo knows the prices are one of the main reasons for falling gates and if its true that gate receipts are no longer the main financial driver for the club these days he would surely reduce prices.

But he cant do that just yet as it would penalise those that have renewed at higher prices and would create a difficult position next year.

My guess is he will get seat prices reduced, but not just yet and maybe not until next year. It is good that he/the club recognise some of the other reasons i.e local pubs showing the games illegaly and the fact that the fotball needs to improve in quality from last year.

Give it time and things will change.

BoroDancer Posted on 11/9 10:55
re: A letter to Gibbo

I'd like to buy a £50 one. Where can I get one of those?

BenJammin Posted on 11/9 11:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

Why do people think the sky money the club gets is just not spent if its not spent on transfer fees? Players wages have gone up loads in the last few years and if won't pay premiership we won't keep the players, simple as that.

Is the average income per household in Middlesbrough really only £18k. Is everyone on the minimum wage or something, glad I moved away.

AddisonRoad Posted on 11/9 11:17
re: A letter to Gibbo

The Premier League and the 'smaller clubs' are burying their heads in the sand with the subject of falling attendances and ticket pricing.
Fact is in other 'Premier' European League ticket pricing is a fraction of what we pay in England. You can watch Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan etc for about half the price to a third than it would be to watch a home game at Derby, Reading or Boro.
With regard to overall attendances if they took out the Arsenal factor of a jump from 35,000 to 60,000+ and ManUre's increase in capacity and the possible factor of Sunlun @ 40,000 you would see there is a downward factor across the board on a lot of established Premier League teams, e.g. Bolton, Blackburn, Boro.
Money comming into the game from wordwide TV (which is a bigger pot than Sky and ITV) is not at any point filtering down to the fans.
The Premier League fail to understand that the fans play a major factor in making the Premier League so marketable around the globe.
Once empty plastic seats become the norm pitch side the perception of being the status as the No 1 league in the world will reduce and money will dry up.
We the fans are then left with the fall out as the Multi Billion Dollar players drop their purchases and move on to some other 'Investment'.

Gibbo has surrounded himself with local bit part players (Lamb, Allen and Fordy) who haven't got a clue how to retain Customers and attract new.
As for the letter I would not expect to get a reply. After the UEFA Cup Final I wrote a 6 page letter detailing some postive steps in which the club could move forward. To date I am still awaiting a basic 'thank you but'....

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 13:20
re: A letter to Gibbo

Hey Boro Dancer....

At least do me the courtesy of actually reading the post before you comment on it...

The 50 quid was actually 60 quid, and it was reference to the cost of the whole day out for a Father and Son, not a single ticket.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 13:32
re: A letter to Gibbo

Cheers Addison, an extremely well put together and considered point, and on I whole heartedly agree with.

It's incomprehensible to me how so many people on this board think the price is a fair one. It's like paying to see a West End show every two weeks. It's just ludicrus. The clubs don't need the revenue, so why are we being asked to pay it?

It was pointed out in an earlier thread that the club makes just 25% of its revenue from bums on seats. The crowd was 10,000 short for the last home game. Now I'm no countdown conundrum champion, but surly Gibbo can see that 10,000 more paying customers at half the price wouldn't cut into his profit margins too much.

So he would make 22% of his revenue from ticket sales, not 25%... so what???? The fact is, full staduims make for a much more entertaing day by themselves. It's plain nasty being sat in a half empty stadium with all the atmosphere of Buzz Aldrins golf course.

skiprat Posted on 11/9 13:39
re: A letter to Gibbo

The atmosphere has been better this season though with less there, than many of the full houses most have attended.

£20.50 a game (which is what I pay) is a fair price.

Dropping the price by half won't automatically bring 10 thousand back either, look at the Northampton game for example. £10 tickets, 11k fans.

--- Post edited by skiprat on 11/9 13:41 ---

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 11/9 13:47
re: A letter to Gibbo

Amazing what a bit of effort on the pitch does, imagine what it would be like with a full house?

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 13:48
re: A letter to Gibbo

That was Northampton in the first round of a second rate cup... It's hardly a fair comparison.

Hey, skip rat, if you think 35 quid for a Northstand ticket didn't put people off coming to watch the Newcastle match then you are sadly mistaken.

Everybody keeps quoting "I only pay 20 quid" but what you conveniently forget that this has to be paid as a lumper up front. A good percent of fans work outside the area and cannot justfy buying a season ticket at 300-400 quid. I myself work in Norway and have to pick and choose my games according to my rota. That is just one set of circumstaces you have to consider for not buying a season ticket.. What about shift workers, kids, fans of other clubs that fancy a day out??? all these people you pick up casually on the day, and 30 odd quid puts them off.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 11/9 13:50
re: A letter to Gibbo

Skiprat, you're not trying to compare a second round Carling Cup game against Northampton to a league match or a cup quarter final? It worked in league and cup against Charlton and they're hardly ones for pulling the crowds in.

dibzzz Posted on 11/9 13:51
re: A letter to Gibbo

Nice one young'un! ;o)

sasboro Posted on 11/9 13:52
re: A letter to Gibbo

Its pointless talking about dropping the tickets by half when the club refuse to drop the £31-£40 to normal prices. these category A prices should be the ones to focus on first. all that happens is people sacrifice a game to help pay for the category A ticket. eg newcastle and birmingham games

skiprat Posted on 11/9 13:55
re: A letter to Gibbo

I've said on here many a time that the Category A games should be scrapped (It was £31 against Newcastle in the North, not £35).

You say that people are quoting the £20 a game, wheras you are quoting costs for 5 games a season (Cat A).

Gooks_Dong Posted on 11/9 13:58
re: A letter to Gibbo

Just send the letter and have done it with it. How many times are we gonna drag up the same stuff ... as someone said early on, if you dont like it dont go

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:00
re: A letter to Gibbo

Now then Kidda... this Skip Rat fella is adamant that ticket prices are fair and accessable to all. What you reckon to that when your little Harvey is old enough and wants to see a match with you?

skiprat Posted on 11/9 14:02
re: A letter to Gibbo

No it's not the same comparing Northampton and a league game Corcaigh, but a price drop of nearly half brought in a massive -12k fans.

However you want to dress it up ticket pricing is not the only issue.


dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:03
re: A letter to Gibbo

Gooks Dong, you see the problem is that I love the boro and will always go when ever my schedule permits, regardless of the price... the trouble is that there are less and less people like me for the club to rely on. Your appathetic defeatist attitute is not contributing to the discussion.

I propose the fans boycott a cup game.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:05
re: A letter to Gibbo

Skippy... if it had been any more than a tenner the attendance would have consisted of the bench and teh ball boys. You are making my point for me.

skiprat Posted on 11/9 14:05
re: A letter to Gibbo

Most of them already did.

captain5 Posted on 11/9 14:07
re: A letter to Gibbo

So, to make them drop the prices we'd boycott a game where they've dropped the prices??

ccole Posted on 11/9 14:08
re: A letter to Gibbo

"this Skip Rat fella is adamant that ticket prices are fair and accessable to all"

£10 and £5 pounds for the Northampton game, and I would say only around 30% of that gate was non season ticket holders. If you cant tempt people in at those price's, perhaps some expect the club to pay for them to come through the gates.

The cost of the ticket if a factor, but clearly not the only one.

skiprat Posted on 11/9 14:08
re: A letter to Gibbo

Isn't your point that reducing prices will bring in extra crowd?

I'm out of this thread anyway. I've said my piece on here far too many times than I can be arsed about.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

I am not suggesting ticket prices are the ONLY issue here... but I will argue till I'm blue in the face that it is the BIGGEST contributing factor to the problem,

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 11/9 14:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

I know that skiprat. It's a mixture of football that appeals to the brain dead and high prices. A dreadful combination.

They're starting to combat the first of the two.

burydweller Posted on 11/9 14:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

Dear Dibs72


burydweller Posted on 11/9 14:11
re: A letter to Gibbo

Oh.. another thing.. boycot a game? what a fcuking clown, go and support the jawdees, we do not want 'fans' like you at the riverside

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:12
re: A letter to Gibbo


Early cup rounds never bring the punters in. Besides, it should have been free for season ticket holders IMHO.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 11/9 14:15
re: A letter to Gibbo

burydweller, stop moaning man!

ccole Posted on 11/9 14:26
re: A letter to Gibbo

"Early cup rounds never bring the punters in"

Unlike the 25,000 who came to see us play Nuneaton 18 months ago?

Surely, if people are priced out for the season, but they get ONE, perhaps TWO chances to come and see the Boro which is reach of the pocket of everybody (almost) and dont, this would suggest that it is more than the cost of the ticket that is keeping them away?

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:45
re: A letter to Gibbo

Burydweller... who is this 'we' that doesn't want certain people at the games?

Check out the BBC... Gibbo says "We like the fact that there are lots of women at the games and that is due men behaving better..." so it would seem that the only 'we' that counts here is Mr Gibson and Mr Lamb. With such an aggressive potty mouth I doubt 'we' would like you in the ground. You naughty little boy.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:46
re: A letter to Gibbo

Oh and another thing Burydweller...

Why not try the CBBC website while your at it... it may be more suited to your mental age.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:49
re: A letter to Gibbo

Oh and one last thing.. Bottydweller.... you have got some cheek putting fan in inverted commas... i have been watching middlesbrough football club for 28 years, clearly well before you were even a little blob of spunk.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 14:54
re: A letter to Gibbo

Apologies to everyone else. Why do these things 9 times out of 10 revert to a schoolground slagging match?


Point taken, there is more to it than ticket prices. I just feel cost is the definative factor. Don't you?

Purple_Hazer Posted on 11/9 15:03
re: A letter to Gibbo

You don't have to fork out for a season ticket in one go - they do credit schemes, or you could obviously miss this season while put X amount a month and then save next season for the yr after etc.

It works out cheaper in the long run paying on a monthly basis than it does going match by match if you end up at all the games.

And you aren't having to find £30 or whatever 3 times in the month if we have three games.

dibzzz Posted on 11/9 15:49
re: A letter to Gibbo

Me Dad took me way back in 1977 when I was seven. It must have been very cheap to do that back then, but it wouldn't compare with today's prices.

I'll take my lad along when he gets to about seven, but at what cost?

I don't want him to miss out on what I've seen over the past 30 years, but it'll probably end up me giving up my seat for him as he gets older so he doesn't miss out and I'll just have to pick and choose, it is getting to that point now isn't it? (I'm on about the league here by the way)

I think the players wages has a lot to do with it, back in the Slaven years Slav was probably picking up 3 times as much a week as a normal working bloke did then, still a good wage for doing something you love, but now it's just fantasy land, average players earn in excess of a 100 times a week than Joe Average does, and the top players, well, it's just obscene really.

Maybe if players wages (and I'm not blaming the players, no one here would knock the money back) were alot more realistic then the ticket prices could come down, couldn't they?.

Just look at the Yak carry on, he must have been on over 50k a week and he just took the p*ss in the end, no wonder people get narked off with it all.

The game is losing it's grip on reality when it comes to money, the Prem is a very successful product, but some sides of it absolutely stink.

Gibbo, don't lose the working class man!

dibzzz Posted on 11/9 15:57
re: A letter to Gibbo

AddisonRoad - Good point well put.

jam69 Posted on 11/9 16:02
re: A letter to Gibbo

since 1998 the average wage in the north east of england has gone up 11%,match day tickets have increased by 62%.

dibs72 Posted on 11/9 16:12
re: A letter to Gibbo

Not to mention the price of a pie.

AddisonRoad Posted on 11/9 16:13
re: A letter to Gibbo

I cannot understand via some fans are justifing the £35.00 - £25.00 a ticket. Fact is over our best ever historical seasons, attendances have been dropping year on year.

So what fills the Riverside?
Many idea's have been put forward over the last few seasons. I would suggest it's a mixture of these 3 :-
1. Attractive Football.
2. Success on the pitch.
3. Pricing.

The very early Riverside years saw an element of attractive football. Pricing was in keeping with Ayresome Park and we did 3 cup Finals.
So was that our pinincle?
I would suggest that Management within the club have lived of those eary Riverside years and have taken fans for granted. The only saving grace in saving their jobs has been that TV money has gone up season upon season, so turnstile money isn't as the major factor within the clubs budgets as it used to be.

So why aren't the club looking as ways to re-address the decline in gates. Have they every thought of putting effort in re attracting the tens of thousands of season ticket holders they have lost.
As Middlesbrough and the surrounding area is only in the region of about 200,000 people the catchment pool is a very small one in trying to attract new fans. I would suggest the vast majority of the population who don't go to games now are EX FANS.

Attracting new fans and retain existing should be a priorty. I have friends in South London and if Gibson should look at the way Charlton pull in fans from around London, Kent, Sussex and Essex this football clubs board of management should hold thier heads in shame.
Boro are the only Premier team in Yorkshire, the largest army base in Europe, should I go on.

Back to my original point.....For the People of this area, the greater majortiy whom are below the National Average of pay.
Of the 3 points above, PRICING is the major factor in pulling fans in. The other 2 help.

I think the term for it is "RIP OF BRITAIN". We pay over the odd's for all things in this country:- Petrol, Booze, Cigs, Houses, Tax and Football.

--- Post edited by AddisonRoad on 11/9 16:14 ---

matt85 Posted on 11/9 16:35
re: A letter to Gibbo

My personal view and the reason I dont go to games anymore is as follows.

The sheer fact of the matter is that £30+ for a ticket does not represent value for money in my eyes. Back in the day from Robbo coming we were entertaing, even if, as somebody pointed out, our defence was crap and we got relegated. Since McLaren took over there was next to ZERO entertainment at times and that drives fans away. No passion, no entertainment. I dont want to pay £30+ for the sake of being 'a proper fan'. To be honest, with some of the football we have had to endure over that time I probably wouldnt go for free. So IMO I think for the vast majority of the missing 10,000 its not necessarily just the money its the fact that they would rather spend it elsewhere because what MFC has to offer them doesnt compare for whatever reason.

I would love to see a successful football team winning the PL and playing in europe every year but realistically its not going to happen but I would still definately go back if I thought I was at least going to be entertained and have something to remember and talk about afterwards. How many league home games have you walked out of the past 5 years or so saying 'wow that was brilliant'? I cant think of many at all yet for some reason I can still remember about half of 1996-1997.

The bottom line is if your average fan is like me (and I think they are to a large degree) a combination of passion, pride and entertainment will get the fans back not a chopping of ticket prices (although it certainly wouldn't do any harm).

Having said all that I like what Southgate appears to be doing with this team so hopefully we are back on the road to becoming a team we all want to watch again.



ccole Posted on 11/9 16:41
re: A letter to Gibbo

I started to think that cost was the definitive factor, but it seems as though those who aren’t happy with the cost still won’t go when it’s only a tenner.

People won’t admit it, but the novelty has worn off for them. Simple as that. Many blame the price of tickets, but that makes them feel a little happier and justify the decision they have made not to “support” the Boro through the turnstile to themselves and other like minded people.

The club needs to find ways of getting them back in, which will be hard, but unless they have another good reason for not taking the chance to see their team for a tenner, then I will take the “its too expensive to watch the Boro reason” for what it is………. Fooking bo11oks

dibzzz Posted on 11/9 16:56
re: A letter to Gibbo

coole - People don't want to pay ten quid to watch the reserves play against lower sides in cup which has lost all it's fizz thanks to likes of the big four clubs treating it like a piece of dog dirt unless they get to the semi's.

ccole Posted on 11/9 17:01
re: A letter to Gibbo

If the big four treat it like dog dirt as you describe, why do they keep winning it (except when we do) for most of the last 10 years?

If I couldnt afford to go to league games, and I loved watching the Boro, and there was perhaps only one chance a year to watch the team for a price I can afford, I would take it. Wouldn't/don't you?

dibzzz Posted on 11/9 17:02
re: A letter to Gibbo


The Jersey Farm is just North of Hartlepool on the coast just past Crimdon Dean on the left up a country road, just folow the signs.

And it's shyte, but brilliant if you're 2!!!!!!

dibzzz Posted on 11/9 17:09
re: A letter to Gibbo

ccol - Over the years the big four have won it quite often as they just seem to have the knack of getting to latter satges as most lower teams shyte themselves when they are up against them.

Or if the dirt hits the fan they can always throw on a superstar to did them out of the dirt.

You really have me believe that the big four take it seriously?

As for your last question. Yes, but obviously Nothampton doesn't get peoples enthusiasim going.

number_10 Posted on 11/9 17:12
re: A letter to Gibbo

It's not just rip off Britain though is it?

It's rip off Boro. Our prices are far higher than the clubs we compete with.

I think people are finally coming around to the clear problem that the club is way, way out of touch with the average fan. The 90's boom was never going to last forever.

Gadgie Posted on 11/9 18:18
re: A letter to Gibbo

Most of the arguments have been made but one thing people haven't mentioned yet is that whilst the TV money is drastically increased this year, the club don't actually receive it till the end of the season. As gazzastrip said "he cant do that (reduce prices) just yet as it would penalise those that have renewed at higher prices and would create a difficult position next year."

The club still have their ongoing costs to cover throughout this season before they get to see any of the windfall at the end of the season. Of course, some clubs are speculating to accumulate, as we did in the past. But unless being bankrolled by billions then the incentive to do that has been weakened a lot by seeing what happened to Leeds who tried just that. I doubt therefore we'll see anything happen before next season, though I do believe prices are a significant factor, though not the only, in our dropping attendances.

AddisonRoad Posted on 11/9 18:45
re: A letter to Gibbo

Ccole you say that people wouldn't go to the game if it was just a tener. You may be right.
I think the point that when peolpe stop going to the games they find other things to do with there time and money.
To then get them back into the Riverside is more than just playing entertaining football or value for money. You then have to stop them doing what there just started doing new sport/hobby/sat on yer ar5e/shopping with the missus or playing with the kids.

It's also keeping the social aspect of the game going i.e sitting/standing with your mates. In an all seater stadium you end up having to sit in another block next to people you wouldn't be seen in daylight with.

The Taylor report good in ways but 10 years on creating sterile football stadiums.

That's why more fans who stopped going to the Riverside go to away games. As those with and without season tickets can all sit together.
Football is not just 90 minutes of watching it from the stands it's also having crac' with the people around you.

--- Post edited by AddisonRoad on 11/9 18:48 ---

--- Post edited by AddisonRoad on 11/9 18:53 ---

RedWurzel Posted on 11/9 19:16
re: A letter to Gibbo


If you claimed Child benefit and Tax credits you could afford the tickets. Also you can claim your wives income tax allowance worth about £1000 a year which would almost get you all a season ticket.

I do agree prices are too high though. When we played Charlton last year 32,000 this year 22,000 against Birmingham, it wasn't attacking football that brought the 10000 in.

I still can't believe the number of rose tinted Robbo glasses about. Many of the games were not entertaining under Robbo. This is the guy who played the Christmas tree formation, who managed to get to almost Christmas one year without a home win. I think the crowds were good under Robbo, because of the new ground and the feeling of a new ambitious era.

AddisonRoad Posted on 12/9 13:44
re: A letter to Gibbo

RedWurzel, yer right regarding Robbo'. It was the fact we had signed big name players at the time from Barmby, Juno' Rav and Emerson. It wasn't Robbo's tactics it was the players on the pitch making it work.
Sell out's each week and everybody sat together with their mates making it one hell of a social day out. Myself I couldn't wait for the next home game, be it some scran in the Onion pre-game or pop on the boat for the crac' at the end of the game the whole package was great.

skiprat Posted on 12/9 13:53
re: A letter to Gibbo

"The sheer fact of the matter is that £30+ for a ticket does not represent value for money in my eyes"

Nor me, that's why I'd pay £24 for the normal matchdays tickets if I didn't have a season ticket.

ccole Posted on 12/9 14:00
re: A letter to Gibbo

"i.e sitting/standing with your mates. In an all seater stadium you end up having to sit in another block next to people you wouldn't be seen in daylight with"

Not a problem for 80% of games at the riverside this or last season. There are plenty of spare seats to choose from.

Your right about getting people back in the habit. To be honest the club seem to do very little to address that. An example of the sort sightedness of the club is the pub bus's that are run. These should be encourged 100%. Instead we see them parked further and further away from the ground, in car parks that push the fare up, and making it harder for them to get away after the game.

If anything, the club should be subisdsing this form of transport and parking them in the club car parks at the stadium, making it easy for Joe Public to get from home to the ground. I have a friend who cant take his grandad anymore because they is too much walking for him.

Those are the type of things I am getting at. Its not all about money, (though it clearly is ONE factor) and those who keep saying that it is the only reason they dont go are normally talking shyte. Unless we/club understand the real reasons, how can we/they ever correct it?

AddisonRoad Posted on 12/9 14:43
re: A letter to Gibbo

CCole the seating is a problem when you have people whom have a season ticket and those who don't.
There is also the added problem of mates who gave up their original ticket 5-6 years ago and got another ticket in another block/stand.

A suggestion would be to have a couple of blocks in each stand as a open areas for season ticket holders.
For example in the North stand as singing area's with a open ticket policy. You have a season ticket for this area but not a individual seat. You turn up at the North Stand ticket office hand over your stub and be allocated a seat. You would get groups of guys going into the stadium together (earlier so the club would make more money on food, beer etc) Seat Tickets would be based on one ticket per person, to overcome the problem of one guy taking 10+ stubs and holding seats.

The only downside would be the club would have to man a ticket office and print out a seat number.

Based upon is a signing section could create a better atmosphere and win additional points at home then 3-4 points in the Premiership would be an additional position UP in the league at the end of season and worth over £250,000. The price of a couple a staff and printing tickets shouldn't be a problem.

Put this to the club 3-4 years ago (Fordy and Allen) never got the courtesy of a reply email.

Your right on the transport issue.
Again I will use Charlton as an example of putting buses on to get fans in from Kent, Sussex and Essex. If you make it easy for fans they will come.
Why cannot they use Cargo Fleet Railway Station ?
Middlesbrough Council, Cleveland Police and the Club are cluless on these matters

--- Post edited by AddisonRoad on 12/9 14:48 ---

skiprat Posted on 12/9 15:15
re: A letter to Gibbo

I wouldn't say they are clueless as such, they just have absolutely no interest in even beginning to look at the various problems surrounding matchdays and even in the Police's case they tend to go out of their way to make it as hard as possible to get to games.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 12/9 15:25
re: A letter to Gibbo

If the halt at Cargo Fleet was opened, how many do you think would get the train to the ground? 500 max? Most don't live near enough to a station for it to matter.

Otley_Boro Posted on 12/9 15:32
re: A letter to Gibbo

Lots of poeple going to the game, get the train to Boro station. If they had regular trains on from Nunthorpe, Marton, Redcar, Gypsy Lane, Stockton, Thornaby, Eaglescliffe, Billingham, Yarm direct to the ground - people would use it.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 12/9 15:42
re: A letter to Gibbo

By the time you walk to those stations you'd be at the ground on the bus from the local boozer.

Otley_Boro Posted on 12/9 15:53
re: A letter to Gibbo

The train from Yarm takes 15 minutes. The bus from the local boozer in Yarm can take up to an hour. Both boozer and Station are 2 mins walk from my house, a train return also costs £2.50 (if I get aksed for a ticket, which is rare) and the local bus is £3.50.

--- Post edited by Otley_Boro on 12/9 15:54 ---

--- Post edited by Otley_Boro on 12/9 15:55 ---

dibzzz Posted on 12/9 17:25
re: A letter to Gibbo

On AddisonRoads idea about mates not being able to sit together anymore is something I'm really interested in.

I think this should be addressed as it would improve atmosphere and see gates rise.

My radical idea is to have a standing area (yes you read that right) a standing area so that this being with your mates argument can be solved.

North West lower corner to have seats removed, this is not a popular area, it's always very sparsley inhabited.

It's away from the travelling fans and at the same time at the loud end.

With todays technology this can be sensibly controlled and easily policed, it doesn't have to be rammed like the Holgate was and it can be safely implemented, strict ticket allocation only (as the rest of the ground)and once all tickets have been sold out, that's it, no entry. These tickets would be snapped up before the day of the match, sold on a first come first served basis, and no season tickets are allowed to be bought in this area.

You could possibly get around 800 people there and still have plenty of room in.

Now feel free to slag me off and call me stupid, but deep down you know it can work.

MarkW_21 Posted on 12/9 17:32
re: A letter to Gibbo

Dibs72 - Have you had a reply yet?

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 12/9 17:34
re: A letter to Gibbo

A great idea but one that the club will never pursue. It's against the rules of the league for one.

MarkW_21 Posted on 12/9 17:37
re: A letter to Gibbo

At the minute it is banned, but recently, there has been a lot of talk from the organisation's involved, so, watch this space.... Fingers crossed!

dibzzz Posted on 12/9 17:39
re: A letter to Gibbo

Reply to what young'un?

MarkW_21 Posted on 12/9 17:42
re: A letter to Gibbo

Has Dibs72 had a reply to the letter posted at the top of this thread?

dibzzz Posted on 12/9 17:47
re: A letter to Gibbo

Not as far as I'm aware, have you dibs72?

dibs72 Posted on 12/9 18:17
re: A letter to Gibbo

I haven't actually posted anything... sorry to dissapoint :(

To be honest I posted it up here first and thoght would be encouraged to go further by the responses from this site. Kind of testing the water if you will.

I assumed I would have the full support of Joe public on the matter, but it would seem that the club (and the Premiership on the whole) have managed to convince the populus that is fair game to ask people to part with 80% of their disposable income week in week out.

That's some trick if you ask me.

If i felt more people were behind me I would re-word the letter to appear slightly less radical and pop it in the letterbox tomorrow. Alas, the brainwashing appears to have affected the masses.

Corcaigh_the_Cat Posted on 12/9 18:48
re: A letter to Gibbo

There's plenty behind you dibs.

juninho_the_legend Posted on 12/9 18:48
re: A letter to Gibbo

i agree with you dibs ticket prices should have been lowered

AddisonRoad Posted on 12/9 18:56
re: A letter to Gibbo

C The Cat.
Your right in terms of how many could you get in on the train, but there is no reason why in an hour up to kick off 20 trains couldn't stop from both the Redcar and Middlesbrough tracks, as per any tube station.
If the service was there people would use it. I get a train in from Eaglescliffe and still have to walk the 20 mins to and from Middlesbrough station adding to the conjestion.

Winston_Spangler Posted on 12/9 19:18
re: A letter to Gibbo

Are people a bit thick? The reason we've had the biggest drop is that we had the biggest boom to begin with. We went from 18,000 to 35,000 in less than 5 years. By my maths that's almost double. And I'm alright at maths. If we want to fill a 35,000 stadium with our relatively small local population we need to cut ticket prices like Blackburn who are very similar in terms of big boom around 96/97, big ground, small place problems.

RedWurzel Posted on 12/9 20:51
re: A letter to Gibbo


We've dropped from 32k (98/9) at our peak to 22.5k today.

I agree with those about making it more convenient to get to.

I agree about getting out of the habit.

I tend to think the novelty has worn off, the major tool the club has got is pricing at present to bring some more spark back

BenJammin Posted on 12/9 21:06
re: A letter to Gibbo

We are not averaging 22.5k this season. Our lowest ever crowd this season was 22.9k and the average must be 26-27k so far and i'm sure it'll stay there.

Winston_Spangler Posted on 12/9 23:34
re: A letter to Gibbo

My point still stands. We had a level of high profile players signing for us around the time of the general football boom created by Euro 96, the like we'd never seen before. We attracted more floating, football's cool fans than most other clubs due to this. These fans are now leaving because drinking in coffee houses and going to art galleries is now the thing to do. The only way to fill the ground is to reduce prices. Anyone remember Charlton at home last season around Christmas? They were still trying to get fans in half way through the first half. Why? Because kids prices were a fiver. I think. Possibly a tenner.

AddisonRoad Posted on 12/9 23:55
re: A letter to Gibbo

Why when the Germans whom had the last word cup and built a number of new stadiums to host it. Did they plan to have standing sections ?
The reason was to have cost effective areas to attract the working class fans and create an atmosphere at each game.

Premier League:- as what you saw at Wembley tonignt bucket red seats at the start of the 2nd half as dessert hadn't arrived at the hosts tables.

AddisonRoad Posted on 13/9 0:03
re: A letter to Gibbo

On the subject of German Clubs.
Remember going to Hansa Rostock for a Boro Pre season game.
(The one the ref got locked up for)
They had stadium corners as 'cheap' standing only and created a great atmosphere from there with the majority of the singing fans, flags and banners.

bblf Posted on 13/9 1:02
re: A letter to Gibbo

I would take one small part of that e-mail out to stop them just bining it.

Should read.

Dear Steve/Keith

Love dibs72

borodazzlers Posted on 14/11 19:44
re: A letter to Gibbo


AddisonRoad Posted on 15/11 1:17
re: A letter to Gibbo

Any reason for the punt back to the top of the board?

borodazzlers Posted on 15/11 5:01
re: A letter to Gibbo

Yeah, I found it an interesting read, that's why I saved it. I didn't want it deleting just yet.