The price of following your team

I have the potential opportunity to see the Spuds game at the Boleyn on the 25th Feb.

But I have a dilemma.

The match is designated a Category 1 fixture, which means that the prices are jacked up summat silly.

The match is a 20h00 k.o. which means with everything, I won’t be able to get the tube until at least 22h00 with the hundreds of people running to Upton Park tube at the same time. And then is the journey home, which means I won’t be in until about 23h00 at the earliest.

I would also have to go from work, which means lugging the laptop and rucksack. Not ideal.

Add to the fact that the seats in the North Bank are all sold out and there is one seat left in the Bobby Moore  Lower at £46. I am not a real fan of that part of the stadium TBH – it took me ages to get over the fact that I had to move from my regular seat in the West Stand when they rebuilt it.

And now there are choices of getting a seat in the “Alpari” stand as it is called now, but I am loathed to pay £58 and £64 respectively – it is just far too much. Then add on a programme, chips and sausage from Queens Fish bar and possibly a pint prior and you are heading towards £70 already. For 90 mins worth of spectator sport. Just look at all the City fans re-buffing the £62 tickets the Gooners were offering them for Sunday’s fixture just gone.

West Ham claim to offer affordable family football, and back in the day when I would not have batted an eyelid and just stumped up. But things are tight with everyone these days and to compound matters, the game is also on Sky Sports 1 – which means I could go down the local, watch it and be back by 22h00 without having to negotiate the farce know as public transport.

Tough decision – I don’t get to go to the Boleyn as often as I would like to due to living abroad – but equally, you have to look at the opportunity cost of a ticket versus summat else – and there is a whole heap of diecast, Lego and stuff in general that that money could be put towards.

But it is becoming increasingly clear that for the big matches it is an expensive business – I am lucky to have a ticket for QPR coming up for £19 thanks to a half price offer. That is far more reasonable. And it seems that the only half affordable way to watch the Hammers is to avoid Chel-ski, Mancs, Spuds, Gooners, Cit-teh and the Scoucers. All of which I believe are Cat A games.

Time to mull over the decision – but I am increasingly being tempted by the convenience of Murdoch’s TV Empire…..and save myself a few quid. 


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