“The Professional Footballers’ Association say that in 1957, a top England player would have earned a total of a year £1,677 in wages, bonuses and international match fees.”
That is equivalent to about £75,000, or $120,000, about the same as a doctor or an accountant might earn in a year… or what a modern day footballer can earn in a week.
It is reported that Manchester City striker Carlos Tevez earns over £250,000 per WEEK. That’s $400,000. A week. Yes, you read that right. Per week. & days. A quarter of a month. 168 hours. That’s £1488 per hour. £24.80 per MINUTE.
Samuel Eto’o is believed to be, at the present moment, the highest earning footballer in the world, at £350,000 per week under his current contract at Russian giants Anzhi Makhachkala. I suppose that this is the only way a Russian team will successfully get a world renowned player to leave a top European club with 70,000+ seater stadiums, and join a team of minnows whose stadium holds a grand total of 15,200 people.
So what it is about football that allows clubs to pay so much for club transfers, Cristiano being a prime example after moving from Manchester United to Real Madrid for £80million ($131.6milion), sky high wages, and even charging fans over the odds to come and watch their teams play.
I am a member at Chelsea, and I pay anywhere from £25 for a cup match ( to see our kids play in reality!), up to £87 to sit in the most expensive stand. On top of that there are corporate and VIP packages, and also Season tickets, which can reach £1,250 a season. But we are not the worst! Oh no! If you want to enjoy matches at the Emirates Stadium, Arsenal will be happy to charge you £1954 for the pleasure. The cheapest season ticket at Fulham costs £399, whereas the cheapest at Chelsea costs £595, and at Arsenal they won’t even advertise their ticket prices on the website, but are happy to charge non-members up to £128 for a match day ticket.
One thing to note, is that nine times out of ten, these stadiums are full (well, not always the Emirates, people pay to see good football after all!), and when there is demand, there will be an increase on the cost of supply! If stadiums were not full maybe ticket prices would decrease. But we are willing to pay these high prices for the love of our team. For the love of football.
So what would happen if stadiums were half empty? Clubs would realise they charged too much for entry, and decrease ticket prices. Stadiums would become full. Maybe transfers would not be as ridiculous, with players changing clubs for £50, even £80million. In the past few years football has come incomprehensible when you look at the money side. A Premier League star will earn more in a day than a NHS Public health service nurse will earn in a year.
Is this right? And what can we do about it?
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