Sunday, 8 February 2009

What Price Passion

I'm unable to confirm but I imagine AFA President Julio Grondona doesn't have to pay to get into football matches. If he or any of his associates had to open their wallets in order to see a game they may have thought twice before increasing prices by a hefty 20% for this year's Clasura campaign (following on from 2008's 60% hike). But stop.............the FA has increased the prices? As alien as it sounds to us in the UK the AFA sets the prices for the Primera A, Primera B Nacional and Primeras B, C & D. The AFA dictates the prices for the 'populares' areas of the ground whilst the clubs have jurisdiction over the 'plateas'. So current prices are now 30 pesos (approx £6) which doesn't sound like much compared to watching Chelsea or other UK teams but factor-in the low wages and economic situation and for some fans it may prove an increase too far.

Grondona makes a valid point whan stating that football is the only entertaiment subjected to VAT. Getting the Government to reverse this at the moment could well prove difficult even if el presidente has the will. Comments I have seen on message boards take the view that these increases would be slightly more palatable if some of this cash was put towards security or stadium rennovation - we'll wait and see. Stadium upgrades in England were made possible in the most part because of the Sky TV deal - Argentine clubs are bound by their current contract until 2014.

It shouldn't be forgotten that many of the fans are socios or receive free entry thanks to their 'work' with the barras but the increase cannot fail to impact on the more casual fan.

Hasta luego!