Woodgate To Sign / Season Ticket Price Freeze

WOODGATE to put pen to paper. Yesterday’s rumours were true. Raul and Beckham were seen in the Tontine with Keith Lamb. A Real Madrid delegation has visited the Riverside this week to tie up the loose ends and a confirmation is imminent.
Details to follow.
Immediate questions:
Is that half of Southgate’s transfer warchest spent?
Will he be made captain?
Will it nudge Viduka to sign?
Can he stay focussed and maintain his form?
Has he downsized his own ambitions?
Will it influence other players to sign?
And is the news being leaked now to bury the news that season ticket prices are being frozen? Because they are…


Despite the stampede of middle-sized clubs cutting prices in the face of dwindling crowds and competition from al-jazeera, Boro have gambled and stood firm. What impact that will have on gates next season will depend on signings and the mood going into the new campaign.
Steve Gibson said: “As we look forward to what will be Boro’s tenth successive season in the Premiership, we are looking for the continued support of our fans as season ticket holders.
“I am pleased to announce a price freeze which means that season tickets will remain at 2005 levels for a third successive season.
“In the current economic climate, I feel that maintaining our existing prices is the best way forward. I believe this will ensure that a 2007-08 season ticket offers good value for money to fans while providing the club with the finances to allow us to continue to compete at the highest level.”
Gibson added: “I trust I can rely on the support of our fans in 2007-08. Every penny of season ticket revenue will go into further team strengthening, as my ambition for this football club burns as brightly as ever.
Adult season ticket prices will continue to start at £390 in the North and South stands. Concessions have also been frozen with under-11s remaining at only £120 throughout the stadium and £245 in all but the West and East upper stands for those aged 12-17.
Significant concessions are also again available for 18-21 year-olds in the north-west and south-west corners and for over-65s throughout the stadium.
Season ticket books are to disappear to be replaced by new gold plastic cards that will give fans automatic access to the Riverside when shown to a scanner at the stadium turnstiles.
That is all a bit disappointing and leaves the impression that the club have badly misjudged the mood of the moment. There is very little incentive for fans who are consider the season ticket as a purely financial transaction to stump up in advance. The experience of most is that they can always get tickets anyway and thet if they miss two or three games a season through work or family reasons then the discount of a season ticket is wiped out. That and the recent trend to cutting prices for specific games has swung the maths against the Red Book.
The club needed to make the Red Book more attractive in other ways. They could have made a token cut, or thrown in cup games free, or tied it to a membership scheme with real benefits and real involvement that would be a step to reinvigorating the relationship with fans. In fact there is no change in that relationship, despite growing signs of estrangement and alienation.
An opportunity missed.
**Full story and details in tonight’s steam driven paper format Evening Gazette.

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41 thoughts on “Woodgate To Sign / Season Ticket Price Freeze

  1. Is he mad? Chucking away a career of winning trophies and playing for england to waste his career at a mid table club like middlebrough!
    I read the comments in the northern echo and laughed at how they say whats happened over the last few months has persuaded him to stay..eerrr i hope he isnt refering to our league form.

  2. Great news for all Boro fans (Alf being the exception).
    I admit I had my doubts when Boro first signed Woodgate, how wrong I have been.
    C’Mon Boro!

  3. i am pleased about the woodgate news but dissapointed that there will be no reduction.
    I reckon there will be at least 1,000 less season ticket holders next season,steve gibson may have made a big mistake in not reducing, only time will tell.

  4. Good to see woodgate sign but i hope his form picks back up again. Very clever of the club to announce season ticket prices at the same time as announcing woodgate signing. Club will be hoping that woodgate will be a distraction that season ticket prices go unnoticed.
    Club fail to realise that signing woodgate isnt making the team anybetter, we have to make signings on top. SO many fans will jsut say its the same team as this season
    I here that manutd season ticket prices are goign up 14%

  5. In regards to season tickets. It’s disappointing. I live in Manchester now, I try to get back to all the home games, but it is not always possible. I would have saved money just buying on the day!
    To be honest, I think that is what I will do, plus it also means I won’t be getting bothered with phone calls from Black Horse and their associates.
    They dropped the ball on this one.

  6. Great news about Woody but no price cut in the current climate with all the extra money arriving from TV?
    It’s a decision of disastrous proportions. It just shows how out of touch the club are with the feelings of the fans. Out of the (approx.) £30m EXTRA money coming in, £2m towards reducing the price of a season ticket would not be much to ask and would have equated to roughly £80 reduction for all existing season ticket holders.
    To be held in such contempt by the club is galling. I’ve had a season ticket for almost 20 years and I won’t be renewing. It breaks my heart but I can’t keep coughing up year on year without so much as a token gesture of appreciation. We’ll struggle to sell 15,000.

  7. Disapointing on the ticket prices,I have a red book(east stand upper) and lose 4-6 games a season because of work. Given that other middling clubs have reduced prices and with the t.v money I thought we could do the same,.
    However I will be renewing,because I believe in Steve Gibson and HE deserves our support in every way,even if the team somtimes do not.

  8. boro fans need to decide if we want to be a top half team with high season ticket prices or bottom half and cheap season ticket prices.
    How do you think the club can afford to offer players like woodgate massive contracts if season tickets are cheap?

  9. I think that the club has totally misjudged the mood of many fans and will suffer from poor season ticket sales as a result of their complacency.
    Idea’s the club could have used.
    They could have offered free or £5 tickets to all home cup ties. This may not have cost them a penny, but at least the gesture would have been made.
    Free travel to away cup games for season ticket holders.
    Food and or drinks vouchers to the value of ££, to try and attempt fans to the ground earlier.
    ££ to spend in the club shop.
    A prize draw at each home game for season ticket holders.
    I am sure there are many more (probably better) idea’s out there.
    Unfortunately, no one at the club seems to listen or care.

  10. Ian, clubs attitude to fans is that we should feel lucky to have a club like boro.
    The timing of season ticket prices was always going to be timed to when viduka and/or woodgate signed contracts. they believe that the ticket prices go unnoticed and fans dont mind it with woodgate signing.
    What fans will be thinking is that signing woodgate is not having an extra player but just the same as this season. so really the team is no better.
    WE also need to find out if paying £7m for woodgte will hit this summers transfer budget

  11. Shame the club couldn’t even manage a small gesture of £20 off each season ticket, at least that would have shown willing to listen!

  12. Great news about Woody, as i have been discussing with a work mate, he could be the catalyst that starts the boro 07-08 season off well…hope.
    Woody signing could get Viduka on the payroll for another year. Hopefully, ticket prices are frozen because we need more players, a RB, RM and an AM. 3 players needed, with 12 million plus spent on defenders, i.e. Woody and Huth as well as “Super” Euell as our striker, we need more in the middle and then we are away.
    and apoligies to garb on but i though it people would like to comment on an idea i had for a team sheet, its only a concept. but simply move downing in the middle, adam johnson on the left and then we have two players who can switch and cause problems on the same side. could work?

  13. Well, I was out and about when the Woodgate news broke on the radio and it looks like we have another Ian on the blog.
    The jury is out on ticket prices but if we bring in quality signings and Veruka stays than that is fair in my view. I take on board Alf’s view that fans may think it is not a new signing but £6.5 million is real spondoolies as far as I am concerned. What is more it is a real boost towards the end of the season.

  14. “Great news about Woody, as i have been discussing with a work mate, he could be the catalyst that starts the boro 07-08 season off well…hope.”
    why?, what will change different from this season he has been here this season.

  15. This is a tricky one. Everyone appears to agree that new players are needed & thus, monies are required to pay their (too high ) wages.
    If every other club is getting the same amount of TV cash then , surely it negates any advantage ?
    It appears to me that the Club need to offer high wages to attract semi-decent players & the extra season ticket income may well ‘tip the balance’ in allowing them to do so.
    Although, I do believe that a higher degree of creativity could have been used to make the season ticket ‘extra special’.

  16. Great to see Woody commiting to his home town club.
    Pity some of our supporters arent as committed.
    We have waited 130 years for some success.
    Steve Gibson has delivered Prem football, 5 Cup Finals, 2 years in Europe and a great stadium where access at last has more or less been sorted out.
    Adult season tickets from £390 (£21.66 per game) are amongst the cheapest in the Prem. and for people under 21 and over 65 offer great value.
    Yes,some of the performances have been poor,but I still think we have the basis of a good team.
    Dont be afraid of loan signings either,Geremi and Zenden both did a good job for us whilst they were here.
    The match,or been dragged around B & Q or Morrisons by the Missus, its the match for me.
    I will definitely be renewing !

  17. Im really pleased about Woody signing I think it may help attract other players.
    Im more than disappointed about the Season Ticket price freeze .In the wake of the now massive payments to the clubs through the Sky contract several clubs have announced cuts. Some have cut prices by 25%.
    As a family man whos family buy 5 season tickets every year I will have to rethink my previous blind loyalty. Finances are pulled in many differnt directions and the money I pay would make a major difference to other areas of my life.

  18. great about woody siging. just been reading some comments i will be renewing my red book just like to see a right winger and a creative midfielder come in and do the business and i think gibbo should get his saw out and cut away some off the deadwood eg mendi euell etc.
    plus if you dont renew what will u do on matchdays? we are a prem club and i think there reasonably priced. it would be nice to get free cup games if you renew cmon boro

  19. come on lads, i have been telling you all along that woodgate was going to sign. And viduka wil be next.
    Now it is time to back the manager and chairman and show or ambition matches the club and show him the money.
    Lets all be there next season to see southgate push boro into the top half
    People just find any excuse not to go if they wanted to.

  20. Great news about Woody and credit where it’s due for doing the biz before the window opens.
    No criticism of The Boat but I’d like to see Woody as captain next season. Let’s hope that Vids follows suit soon and that this means that they are both impressed with the players that Gate says he has the cash to bring in during the Summer.
    We need to be impressed too since the club treated this as ‘a good day to bury bad news’ by also announcing only a freeze on season ticket prices rather than a genuine reduction.
    I think this mis-reads the feelings and pockets of fans.
    The only way to have people see value, not just cost, now is to ship out those we know haven’t contributed this season and aren’t good enough and replace them with 3 or 4 new faces in addition to Woody and Vids. If not then I think folks will feel even more cheated.
    As I have said before, if we are struggling financially then some additional investment in the club that didn’t oust Gibbo from his role as Chairman but also didn’t leave us vulnerable to being supported by only one investor might not be a bad thing, if done right.
    And particularly so if a properly sponsored Boro Supporters Trust was also able to invest in the club and take a seat on the Board.
    This involvement would strengthen the bond between club and fans at a time when the ‘ties that bind’ are being loosened by the attempts to prise more than folks feel is right out of hard pressed wallets and purses

  21. ‘plus if you dont renew what will u do on matchdays? we are a prem club and i think there reasonably priced. it would be nice to get free cup games if you renew cmon boro’
    I wil; be watching it in the pub with my mates or out fishing.
    A lot cheaper!
    football is dying!
    it is being taken away form the working man

  22. I should get more credit for coming up with scoops before it heas the papers. Nay jobs going at the gazette office. i was right on:-
    Zenden
    Mendi’s contract
    Geremi
    Juninho
    Boateng
    Maccarone
    Woodgate (x2)
    Huth
    next will be viduka signing, riggot off to sunderland or derby, then morrsion leaving and boateng handing the captancy to woodgate and finally sidwell coming in on a free.
    **AV writes: You’ve certainly got the contacts but you’ll have to do some work on the spelling and grammar.

  23. Having had time to digest the news and the posts my view is that if we do tie down Veruka, do as JP suggests and get rid of the dead wood to be replaced by some good signings that is a move in the right direction.
    If the club then makes serious attempts at re engaging with the fans then the as long as the product is there on the pitch there is less to quible about at the the price freeze.
    If there is a ‘quality’ freeze to set alongside the price freeze than chunters will result.
    As someone who doesnt go to all the matches and who buys as he goes it is easy for me to say
    that the prize feeze is ok if the other things are done.
    There again when you factor in the cost of my travel, the ticket price becomes less of an issue and more a case of is the whole day value for money – the ticket just becomes a symbol.

  24. People go on about needing the money to invest in new players. Surely the point is that Boro might have made MORE money by cutting prices and selling more.
    How about free local public transport with your ticket on match days? That might get some more fans going. It’s standard in Germany. Your ticket for the Bundesliga is also your ticket for local trains/buses.

  25. Great news about woodgate, but still need a new midfield player.
    Season ticket prices are good value at the BORO, but the fans are whingers and always looking for an excuse not to go.
    The Bandwagoners are jumping of the wagon.
    I think Free cup matches up to say quater finals might be a good idea for season ticket holders with a quid for your junior guests might attract new support and sell a few burgers

  26. i’m buzzing about woodgate. lets hope this is signs of a good summer.
    as for season tickets gibson can only do so much and u lot a moaning about paying season ticket prices – how does he feel putting his family money in on a much bigger scale? howway get behind the man he’s doing what he thinks best so the club can survive without loans without a russian or american.
    it’s all the fans who need to help pay for the new players come on boro lets get behind them

  27. boro must buy..
    A STRICKER..
    + saviola…!!
    + aliadiere…
    + kuranyi..
    A CENTER-MIDFIELDER
    + barton…
    + jagielka..
    + sidwell..
    A RIGHT-WING
    + geremi..
    + douala..
    + fernandes..
    A RIGHT-BACK
    + glen johnson..
    + volz..
    + xavier(renew contract)

  28. Great news on the Woody signing, even though it doesn’t improve the team from where we are it means we are not going backwards like we have in the past when Zenden and Zeige left for example.
    Clearly when I exclusively revealed that Woody was staying because he’d just had a home cinema installed I was right!
    The Duke will stay now I’m sure, which gives the opportunity of progress next season if we sign a couple of quality players.
    The club has missed an opportunity to either reduce season ticket prices or offer cheap cup tickets with them, but if significant money is spent this Summer on new players then that will compensate.
    On a related issue I read the Sports Gazette tonight just after I’d heard about Woody. Eric Paylors article regarding the woody position, transferes etc. was shown to be poor in light of the announcement. He stated that Woody staying would depend on ‘other factors’ other than him wanting to.
    He stated this as a fact rather than an opinion, which is poor reporting at best. In future he should stick to reporting facts and make it clear when stating an opinion.

  29. I also think Woody is to be commended for wanting to play for his home town club, he has demonstrated a rare loyalty. He could easily have gone to another club for more money if he had chosen to.

  30. yes barnet nigel, it very easy to praise woodgate for staying with his home town club. i can just about forgive him for going to leeds as a kid then onto newcastle.
    but dont forget the stick we gave shearer for staying with newcastle and wanting to be a big fish in a litte pond and lacking in ambition to win trophies.
    i dont think woodgate has won any medals yet.shame if he ends his career withiout a medal which now looks likely

  31. tamSpider
    Douala? Are you from somewhere in outer space?
    Didn’t Maclaren try to sign him at the same time as Rochemback? Weren’t we told that here was another fantastic Sporting Lisbon legend coming to the Boro? And didn’t he turn us down – twice possibly?
    Of course he ended uo at that big club, Portsmouth, yet hardly seems to have had a game. You know, I think he might be even worse than Rocky!
    I’m with you on Jagielka and Sidwell, though!

  32. Why don’t Middlesbrough offer a scheme like Man Utd do, Season ticket holders can trade there ticket online to others at a cut price.
    Thus allowing those who can’t go to sell there ticket and those who want to go, buy at ticket at a reasonable amount.
    I’m looking forward to the next season ahead. I think that there will be a bit of cash to spend this time round. Gibson has realised Southgate isn’t just going to panic buy in or put players on long contracts e.g. Woodgate, get him on a loan prove his worth and sign him.
    Stick behind the boro.

  33. Clive
    I’m with you on TamSpider – what colour is the sky on your planet, Tam! Or should I call you by your real name – Don Mackay!

  34. Boromart, I for one never gave Shearer stick simply for choosing the Skunks over Man. Utd. I didn’t give a damn quite frankly.
    However in this era of mercenaries and money grabbing players who take the money and give little back its good to see there are some players who have other priorities.
    To say he has given up on winning anything because he is joining Boro is a strange point of view. He is less likely to than if he’d gone to the big four but I suspect that wasn’t an option, after that he is as likely to win something at Boro as any other team.

  35. So, Count DracuLamb has come up with a whizzo wheeze to ‘engage with the fans’ by a corporate rebranding exercise featuring a new badge and logo.
    This is real (NOT!) hearts and minds stuff, doubtless with very real costs!
    As opposed – I suppose – to engaging with them through their pockets by doing something real like reducing sason ticket prices.
    It used to be said – before it became non-PC, non-neo-con and jingoistic – that patriotism was the last refuge of the scoundrel.
    Now, it’s corporate rebranding!

  36. Re branding is one of those hideous Tony Blair-isms. *shudder*
    The only thing that will truly engage the fans is when the club ensures that it can provide 11 premiership quality players on the pitch. – as opposed to the current 8 (at best). If the missing slots get filled, Boro will be a very good Prem side worth watching and worth paying good money for.
    No ones asking for worldbeaters, but please no more deadwood or players who blatently cant even keep pace in the Prem. Its just too painful to watch sometimes.
    If the club fail to deliver a full team of committed premiership standard players, then the fans naturally feel ripped off. Paying hard earned cash for obvious deadwood on the pitch (or any sub standard product) is just too much to expect of even the loyalest fanbase.
    I agree with the concensus that 4 quality signings are needed to bring to team up to a decent premiership standard, with two of those being in the vastly under resourced midfeild department.
    Fingers crossed they deliver. Oway Boro!!!!
    Aye and great news about Woodgate!

  37. Free ticket for public transport to the ground. Er. what public transport is that then Steve?
    We arrive in a mini bus and the safety authorities (?) have started barring us from going over Shepherdson Way and alighting outside the ground.
    They seem to love piling up negative match day experiences for the dwindling faithful.
    Maybe thetre is method in their madness, less crowds attending = less risk of accidents.

  38. Glad that Woodgate has signed, he will give the other defenders more confidence and he does seem to be staying fit.
    However, I am most annoyed and disappointed that there is no reduction in Season Ticket prices, especially given that the club will got loads more TV money, yet they act as if they are doing us a favour NOT increasing the ST prices.
    It would have been nice to have had a redunction, even if only £50 given the rubbish we have had to endure this season, and the previous 3, in the Premierships. Cups runs exciting, league matches, mostly rubbish.

  39. Bloomin’ heck, as Chubbs would say, what a lot of whingeing twerps. Maybe Lamb’s right – you’ll get the team you can afford. Reducing prices wouldn’t necessarily increase the number of Season Ticket holders and would more probably lead to a loss for the company ( aka football club ).
    Withdrawal of your support will only lead to the demise of our beloved Boro, but maybe not so beloved to some of you judging by the volume of the booing at half time when things aren’t going for us?
    We have no divine right to be in the Premier League and so, if you want it to continue, then support the team, regardless of the half time score and stop complaining about season ticket prices.
    They haven’t risen that much over the last few years and are still a fair bit cheaper than a lot of clubs.

  40. I’ve had a season ticket for 25 years…. Having a Red Book S01906 didn’t help me get a ticket for the UEFA cup final… or a letter of apology from the club for not being able to get a ticket or return my application saying all sold out.
    I have had to endure poor football, poor passing… when will we learn to pass a ball?… a total lack of commitment from some of the team for several seasons now we have become boring, boring Boro apart from just a few games.
    I have seriously been frightened of falling a sleep in some matches because we’ve been so boring and thought if I got seen by a Steward I might have got thrown out like some one else did last season.
    I miss several matches a season due to work commitments so having a season ticket apart from my good seat and the supporters who have become friends who sit around me, it has been an expense I can and will do without.
    So no incentive Boro for Red Book Holders then sorry No more season tickets purchased by me
. You’ve blown it Boro for being too greedy and not looking after your loyal regular supporters, whose incomes are no where near that of a footballer.
. Once I’ve gone 

 I’ve gone!
    So reconsider your pricing structure Boro before it’s too late as I am not the only Red Book Holder or supporter thinking with his pocket!!!!

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