Sub-standard stats mask the true price of football

15 Oct

I can only imagine the Brentford media team are standing by to swing into action on Thursday morning after the Evening Standard published a bonkers report late last night, claiming it was cheaper to watch Arsenal than the Bees. In a clearly sensationalist bit of headline grabbing (presumably meant to lure people to their website, and yes – I bit) they have made this incredible statement. All of which is a shame for no other reason than it will now distract from yesterday’s genuine read – Beesotted’s summary of Matthew Benham and his presentation to the Matchbook Traders Conference.

But I need to start with the Arsenal ‘story’ where, I suppose, we should be glad that the Standard actually remembered Brentford exist with their latest story on the cost of football. The column by Tom Dutton (@TomDutty on twitter) ignores the fact that a Brentford season ticket is still cheaper than attending four ‘top category’ Arsenal games. Instead they have focused (incorrectly – and we’ll get there) on a twist of circumstances as the lead for their whole column.

Gunners fan can, theoretically, pick up a ticket for the home game with Bournemouth for £27. That being the cheapest price band for the only league game they have declared in their lowest pricing category.

I’ve taken a look at the Arsenal website this morning and it is true. Should you want to go to their Emirates stadium on a Monday night immediately after Christmas, (December 28) and sit in the bottom corner then there may well be a £27 ticket available to ‘Joe Public’.

That is, should any remain. Even the club’s home page notes that this is: “Subject to availability should any tickets remain after sales to Members”.

The Standard’s report fails to note that this membership is a cheapest price £25 whilst, incidentally, you have to pay £15 just for the privilege of getting on the waiting list for a season ticket. That said, they do also highlight the £97 category A seat for a single game and the over £1,000 cheapest season ticket price.

The Standard have never had a particular good relationship with Brentford, preferring to concentrate more on the Premier League than the clubs in London who have made up their traditional target audience. And when we have been mentioned, it is more a cheap shot at our expense for their own means – headline grabbing.

Good luck to them. It must be sad to be so desperate for readers. Moreso, and as supporter Thomas Knight had noted, given that supporters can get into Saturday’s league game against Rotherham for just £10, applying the same logic their article is already fatally holed below the waterline.

Griffin Park - watch an entire season for less than four Arsenal tickets

Griffin Park – watch an entire season for less than four Arsenal tickets

The other much more pertinent piece of Brentford related news was the aforementioned appearance by Matthew Benham. Billy Grant’s article is a fascinating one and, whilst not able to put any questions direct to our owner, does raise several interesting thoughts.

Specifically the observation on Marinus Dijkhuizen that, “They pulled in all the necessary references. But he also admitted that the club had also received one bad reference.

This reference they ignored – a fatal mistake – as they were so sure that Dijkhuizen was their man.”

Whilst the full reasons behind Marinus departure still remain muddied (anyone?), it does beg the question why such a potentially critical piece of information wasn’t investigated further?

I’m not going to steal Billy’s thunder any further. I thoroughly recommend that, if you haven’t already, then do take a look at the full article on the Beesotted website.

I’d love the chance to put these sorts of questions to Matthew. It takes a brave man to admit he’s made a mistake so fairplay for doing so. And so decisively.

It would be intriguing to find out why.

Matthew and Beesotted always make a good team

Matthew and Beesotted always make a good team

Nick Bruzon

4 Responses to “Sub-standard stats mask the true price of football”

  1. KevinO October 15, 2015 at 9:14 am #

    Do you think it is acceptable for the club to publicly disclose they got a ‘bad’ reference for Marinus? We really are becoming very shabby in our attempts to justify our actions. By all accounts Marinus was a thoroughly decent guy can we now just leave him alone to hopefully find another job rather than making self-serving statements to support what we have done.

    • Rodi October 15, 2015 at 9:58 am #

      Well said. A blatent breach of confidentiality; but then, since the corrupting love of lucre and materialism, since the thatcher, anything goes and many in the land admire and worship these things above honour and morality, which makes a rounded and worthwhile human being. The likeability element re MD, does not mask the huge mistake by the gambler’s clique in engaging him in the first place, the outcome being a clownish farce, given the first class man he was replacing; he was simply uncomfortably out of his depth.

      • malbee October 15, 2015 at 11:23 am #

        Just simply say it Rodi ,BENHAM OUT,and all the Bees problems will be resolved.

  2. KevinO October 15, 2015 at 7:30 pm #

    I’m not so sure we know he was out of his depth as he wasn’t given enough time to show us one way or the other. Whoever followed Warbs was on a hiding to nothing but when you add in the colossal injuries he faced then he really was up against it. Because the club stated the manager would not be sacked based on results they decide to blacken his name over his training methods. A number of players came out and publicly stated they enjoyed his training and thought his methods were good. It now appears that this very bad reference was from the agent of a former player who was on the bench for MD’s team. I have managed a college rugby team (successfully) for 19 years and I can tell you almost without exception the players who are being selected each week think the manager/coach is brilliant, those who are not being picked think he is terrible. I doubt football is much different.

    What a load of rubbish…..and it keeps being compounded. Sometimes less is more!

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