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Gas Monkey

Has our recent success on the field affected the size of our support?

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Just trying to gauge opinion here. Yesterday’s home support was awful but not criticising those who actually went. I am genuinely concerned about the decreasing size of our support. Others appear to want to shrug it off and say things like “crowds don’t win points” etc. However while we never had a huge support it did sit around the 3000 mark for visits of the likes of St mirren etc but it would rise when teams like Hearts, Dons etc came to town but not now. Recent seasons has seen some of our best ever on the pitch achievements and we are now regarded as one of the mainstays of the Premiership. However some of that success it can be argued was achieved by sh##festing many games, being hard to beat etc but a lot of the entertainment went out the window. Last two or three seasons in particular were eye wateringly painful but we retained our status. Discussing this yesterday at the match and if we had got to the LC semi this season I could not see us selling more that 2000/2500 tickets. So are our achievements coming at a cost? Or are  there other issues at play. Cost does not appear to be a factor as other clubs are experiencing increasing numbers and we offer some of the best pricing packages to be found anywhere. So what’s going on with our support? Will they ever return?

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Problem is there's plenty more things to do for the cost of watching football for 90 minutes. 

I wouldn't even expect crowds due to our "recent success"? I mean the cup win was a good while ago now,  the club chose not to invest further and maintain that quality of squad or results on the pitch, so the crowds are bound to drop if the performances drop as well.

Hopefully with the population of Perth expanding then that might bring some more folk to the ground, but you're still left with folk thinking £24/23 to get in or go do...well anything really? Also not everyone lives within a short walk or bus ride to the ground, so a fiver to park the car? you might be hungry or thirsty, so you find stupid prices for a pie and bovril as well. Football isn't really the most affordable thing these days in comparison to most other activities.

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The old chestnut... hard one to crack.. more than one reason.

Product stale, over priced, and run by idiots who pander to Celtic & SEVCO.

Even season ticket holders won’t come out to watch Celtic or Sevco, due to all their nonsense, and the majority of idiots who support them... every season reasonably playing for 2nd or 3rd place.

Some on this site may disagree but I believe as far as Saints are concerned we need a strong Dundee & Dundee Utd in our league... close for good travelling support... if either playing well always likely to bring a support which exceeds Celtic or Sevco..

Saints are always going to live within their budget which for us means avoiding relegation every season and hope for the odd good cup run.

How do you get backsides on seats ...  it’s not just the money..sometimes I  can’t give my season ticket away.. win every week? 

I am just happy to follow my wee diddy  club.... good bad or totally disgusting!

 

 

 

 

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It's a genuine concern and not addressing it is simply kidding ourselves on. Granted times are challenging financially, but the club offers in the Ormond for a family are great value compared to other Saturday activities. For the size of city, Perth does really struggle and 2,000 fans yesterday is extremely concerning.

If we don't address it, in 10 years time only the Ormond would need to be opened. 

 

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The cold yesterday probably didn't help but we have been going to football in sub zero temperatures for years.

To me it is down to lack of entertainment & enjoyment.

I have been supporting Saints through the second division & all for over 60 years but is just in the past season or so that I have had to force myself to go up the park.

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A big part of football is banter and atmosphere, I think the McD layout should be changed to improve both. 

I would segregate the East Stand giving the away support the red and yellow sections nearest the North Stand. 

The home support to occupy the rest putting the support together to create a better atmosphere. 

Old firm get an additional 1000 approx tickets for each game which would pay for a physical openable gate in the the East Stand and outside. 

Inside a movable tarpaulin like barrier would do so when we need to we could easily open up the whole of the East to home support for our next European games. 

For the smaller teams a few hundred away fans next to us in the East would make a huge difference to the atmosphere. 

For Tayside derbies etc having 1000 away fans packed into the yellow and red sections would be magic and something to look for to. 

That's phase 1 and could be put in place for the start of next season. 

Phase 2 would be a safe standing area in the Blue section for 500 to 1000 saints fans. 

That could be paid for from the extra old firm income in year 2 and introduced at the start of the season after next. 

I am sure the above could be made compliant with health and safety regs etc. There are plenty of examples of split seating areas including both old firm grounds plus Killie and motherwell and Tannadice so it could be done. 

 

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I personally don’t think either safe standing or summer football is the answer. I don’t even think cheaper prices would improve things financially for the club. The vast majority of people who do not support either of the ugly sisters are fed up having to play them 3/4/5/6 times a season is boring. I know it’s not a great solution and it will mean meaningless end of season games but expand the top league so that your only playing the other teams twice a season in the league. 

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Perth having a lot of council run family entertainment on no doubt affected yesterday’s crowd and will do so for the next few weeks. My excuse for not being there yesterday is work related, but I’ve already equalled the total of league games (1) I was at last season. Hope to get to a few more.

Edited by glenrothes saintee

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1 hour ago, Ginger Bakers rebel army said:

A big part of football is banter and atmosphere, I think the McD layout should be changed to improve both. 

I would segregate the East Stand giving the away support the red and yellow sections nearest the North Stand. 

The home support to occupy the rest putting the support together to create a better atmosphere. 

Old firm get an additional 1000 approx tickets for each game which would pay for a physical openable gate in the the East Stand and outside. 

Inside a movable tarpaulin like barrier would do so when we need to we could easily open up the whole of the East to home support for our next European games. 

For the smaller teams a few hundred away fans next to us in the East would make a huge difference to the atmosphere. 

For Tayside derbies etc having 1000 away fans packed into the yellow and red sections would be magic and something to look for to. 

That's phase 1 and could be put in place for the start of next season. 

Phase 2 would be a safe standing area in the Blue section for 500 to 1000 saints fans. 

That could be paid for from the extra old firm income in year 2 and introduced at the start of the season after next. 

I am sure the above could be made compliant with health and safety regs etc. There are plenty of examples of split seating areas including both old firm grounds plus Killie and motherwell and Tannadice so it could be done. 

 

I don't necessarily agree with your suggestion of splitting the a East Stand, but I reckon it's that kind of thinking to improve atmosphere/ experience that we should be looking at.

St Mirren had a great support through yesterday, with a few young ones singing and trying to create a bit of atmosphere, but they were miles away. If they'd been in the north stand it would have been far better.

I'd like a large supporters lounge under the East Stand that runs the length of it. Places to sit, a bit of warmth, big screen tv's to look at scores and bars/ catering stalls.  I've experienced it at several bigger grounds and its great. Not hospitality, just a carpeted, decorated and warm area. Folk would go up to the games earlier to catch up with friends, pop in at half time and possibly even stay half an hour later chatting about the game.  Like a better version of the Muirton Suite in the East Stand but you're in the stadium and just walk from the lounge to your seat.

If i go to the toilets at HT, there's always a small group of older guys that stand in that corridor in the cold catching up and talking about the game.  There's nowhere else really for them to go.  A much more comfortable option where there were plenty places to buy a tea and sit and have a chat would be ideal.

Involves spending a decent amount of money, and probably extending the footprint of the East Stand back the way a bit at ground level, but might provide greater opportunity for matchday income.

I'd also look at the possibility of a safe standing area as you suggested at the yellow seats end of East Stand to attract more teenagers along who want to have a bounce and a sing with their pals at a game.

I know these are probably a bit pie in the sky as the investment would be prohibitive, but might encourage more to come along for a bit more of a whole 'experience' rather than only being about the match.

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I thought the FCU were turning our support problems around. They brought a good atmosphere and more young support. They are gone and the few young ones that did stay got harassed out the door by the police. I think if we want to grow the youth support again we need to address the problems we have with the police harrassing the young folks. 

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14 minutes ago, scott1982 said:

I thought the FCU were turning our support problems around. They brought a good atmosphere and more young support. They are gone and the few young ones that did stay got harassed out the door by the police. I think if we want to grow the youth support again we need to address the problems we have with the police harrassing the young folks. 

To be fair they were back in quite decent numbers yesterday and got a few songs going too.

Some good ideas posted above and no falling out so far. Keep the ideas coming.

For me, season ticket holder bring a friend/lapsed supporter for a tenner all season, not just OF games

 

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16 minutes ago, scott1982 said:

I thought the FCU were turning our support problems around. They brought a good atmosphere and more young support. They are gone and the few young ones that did stay got harassed out the door by the police. I think if we want to grow the youth support again we need to address the problems we have with the police harrassing the young folks. 

true , include the stewarding as well.

 

everything about this club is stale ,stagnant and in need off something fresh.

maybe a wee relegation is needed  and start again.

 

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As a season ticket holder who didn't go yesterday, I genuinely didn't feel like I missed out tbh. I couldn't make it, but I suspect there will have been a few put off by the absolute horror show of our last home game. Performances aside, I think the problem is more fundamental, the whole set up is incredibly stale. Yes there is good stuff for kids, but not sure that entices many new fans. Going to McD is absolutely no different than it was 20 years ago.

Bizarrely,  the issue with saints is that there is no need for fans to turn up. We're not in a relegation battle, pushing for an honour not fighting for the club's survival. It's all just a bit meh!

What would be interesting is to know how many different saints fans attend each season. Is it c4,000 different fans picking and choosing games or the same 2,000 every week? I suspect the club has no idea tbh.

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I think a part of the problem for smaller clubs like saints is that there is far too much footie now, what with the expanded European cups and internationals as examples. Plus we have epl games on the telly. Add in the incompetent league management up here with the likes of ignoring the ‘wrongs’ of a couple of the big clubs and as a result folk have got jaded/bored/fed up/angry. 

Given the number of game rearrangements our league now has I don’t bother putting fixtures in my calendar anymore. And as for international breaks.....just give Saturday footie every week

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As someone has said it's complicated. I wouldn't disagree with much of what has been written. Something has to change though as the attendances are dwindling. Agree about the areas under the stand. They are bleak and could be brightened up (some saints related artwork from some local schools perhaps). Some rudimentary heating there as well as you try to escape the cold at half time bearing in mind it was freezing on Saturday and will get colder.

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I am a season ticket holder and almost didn't go yesterday, for a couple of reasons.

The complete sh!t show that was the celtic game.

The various international breaks, changes to fixtures dates etc all contribute towards a loss of momentum and habit of going to football games.

A lot of chat has been going about this week about alcohol at games. I would settle for some decent coffee to be fair.

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Heres my insight. Ive not renewed my season ticket this season. Cant get to midweek games due to work, not value for money.

Missed Saturdays StMirren match as was away to Glasgow a gig.

The young family deal is good to those only with kids, where is the help to others?  Ive shouted about 5 or 10 game passes to get punters signed up, with a bit of a saving, in the past, and now I'm in a position to buy one.. there is no incentive to keep going for example; I'll buy takeaway coffee as after 6 drinks I get a free one. (It works, I collect stamps and points to reclaim a reward) can surely introduce a stamp reward that after so many PAYG games gives you something in return.  Eg 3 games, 3 stamps gets you £5 off entry and a free pie on your 4th game.  Which also carries forward to next season so you keep your loyality card with you in your wallet.  That could result in a couple of thousand cards in different peoples wallet.. maybe..  hit the festive period and get cards in circulation.

Sky TV has a lot to answer for.  The arm chair fan is the expert, you'll not get them leaving Soccer Saturday to watch Saints.  I hear old Saints fan telling me about Saints and performances (negatively) yet havent been to 1 game this season! And only attended 1 game last season, which we lost, but reinforces negativity.   Our recent live tv games, albeit on BT Sport, have both v Celtic - not a great advert to get fans along.  

I missed yesterdays win, but still happy at full time, but reality is that it's not anywhere as happy as if I'd attended.  Itching to get to next game, where as others will easily find a reason not to.

 

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Guest ScottMann

There's a few reasons mentioned that will undoubtedly contribute but I feel the root of the problem is purely and simply the style of football. It may bring success but it's not good to watch most of the time so we're down to the real hard core that'll go no matter what. The cold breeze blocks and bad coffee don't seem so bad if you're enjoying the game. 

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5 minutes ago, ScottMann said:

There's a few reasons mentioned that will undoubtedly contribute but I feel the root of the problem is purely and simply the style of football. It may bring success but it's not good to watch most of the time so we're down to the real hard core that'll go no matter what. The cold breeze blocks and bad coffee don't seem so bad if you're enjoying the game. 

Football has been good this season though. More attacking, exciting.  Might have forgotten that, given what the fixtures spat out of late.  Turn back 5 games or so we were all shouting how positive we are and getting entertained.  

Once you break the habit of going, other things fill the 2-4 hours on a Saturday afternoon

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Guest ScottMann
1 minute ago, Dave H said:

Football has been good this season though. More attacking, exciting.  Might have forgotten that, given what the fixtures spat out of late.  Turn back 5 games or so we were all shouting how positive we are and getting entertained.  

Once you break the habit of going, other things fill the 2-4 hours on a Saturday afternoon

A small step amongst the converted though Dave. It'll take more than a handful of games to convince the lost numbers to consider coming back. The way the recent fixtures worked has been a bit of a disaster not helped by the worst of it being shown live. Image your interest was beginning to pick up again then you witness the Celtic games on TV. That's you back to square one or worse! 

You're also right about habit but sadly the days of 3pm Saturday are gone. Football doesn't help itself outwith the chosen few.

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15 hours ago, Abernethy Saint said:

For the 1,267th time, the answer is summer football.

In Countries who have switched to it, crowds have stayed the same, with some having marginal increases, and some marginal decreases.

Imagine a game that coincides with Summer holidays and a World Cup, the support would be tiny.

Folk just make excuses because they don't want to go. Some moan that £23 is too high, then say £15 would do it, as if they rely on that £8 to survive. Some blame travelling costs. Some blame the weather. Some blame the results. Some blame the style of play.

99% of them have no interest in going but just make some desperate scramble of an excuse to deflect from not wanting to support a team who won't win every week. It's that simple. You could make it a perfect Summers night, entry for fiver, kids in free, free alcohol and no other game on, and they'd still find a reason not to go.

Best hope we have is the people trying to get their kids into the habit, that's the future, the "adults" who have walked away won't return, no matter how hard you try, so just give up wasting time on them.

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