Southampton reveal Leeds United ticket allocation sales for Elland Road clash after price criticism

Southampton have confirmed their fans have bought every single ticket for their Championship final day blockbuster with Leeds United at Elland Road.
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The Saints have sold out their allocation for their games at both Leicester City, on Tuesday April 23, and the May 4 visit to West Yorkshire. Fourth-placed Southampton have won their last three league outings to put pressure on the top three of Leeds, Leicester and Ipswich Town. Russell Martin’s men sit three points behind third-placed Leeds with a game in hand, but with an inferior goal difference. Leeds, though, are winless in three, just like leaders Ipswich, while the Foxes have won one of their last trio of outings - losing the last two consecutively. All of which makes Southampton the form team as the automatic promotion race enters its final few weeks, and makes it no real surprise that their fans will flock to Elland Road in numbers.

The ticket sales do come on the back of complaints from Southampton fans and the local media on the south coast over pricing at Elland Road. Adults making the trip up from Southampton will pay £47 for their ticket, which is the same price that some Leeds fans pay to sit in the West Stand, where visitors are housed on matchdays. Leeds did offer every club in the Championship the chance to do a reciprocal price deal whereby they would lower the away ticket prices at Elland Road in return for travelling Whites paying less for the return fixture. The Southampton Daily Echo report that Leeds offered a ticket price of £15, which the Saints rejected. A point made consistently by Elland Road sources is that clubs can save their own fans significant amounts of money if they agree to let Leeds fans into their ground for an equally discounted rate. But some clubs, like Coventry City and Southampton - who charged Leeds supporters £30 for entry to St Mary’s earlier in the season - have not been able to see eye-to-eye with the Whites on the issue.

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Leeds United Supporters Trust have backed the club’s reciprocal offer because it works out cheaper for travelling Whites, but they disagree that anyone should be paying £47 to watch second tier football in the first place. A statement released earlier this month said: “Reciprocal pricing is an excellent initiative by the club and something we have been pushing a long time. It helps protect Leeds away fans while also getting a better deal for visiting fans at Elland Road. However, £47 is an extortionate amount of money for a Championship football ticket and it is something that many Leeds fans pay every home game. A sensible cap on ticket prices would solve the vast majority of these issues. We are open to dialogue with any Trust or supporter group that wants to raise the issue of ticket pricing at Elland Road and will work with The Football Supporters Association on away ticket pricing cap campaigns.”

A statement from Coventry City earlier this season criticised Leeds’ negotiating tactics. A spokesperson said: “Coventry have been unable to come to an agreement with Leeds United regarding ticket pricing for away fans for our league games this season. While advertised as being a ‘reciprocal offer’ to Clubs, Leeds’ proposal would result in their fans visiting the Coventry Building Society Arena paying less for the game than Sky Blues supporters. Leeds United proposed us changing the game from Category A to Category B for Leeds United supporters only. In return they would drop their £45 price to £30 for adult Sky Blues fans visiting Elland Road in December. Leeds were not willing to negotiate or change their offer.

"We believe it is not for opposition Clubs to dictate pricing or price categories to other Clubs. Using high prices at their own Club as a negotiating tool to adjust prices at other Clubs should not be the case. While we appreciate the cost to an individual supporter of this, the cost of a price reduction such as this for Leeds fans would be around £30,000 to Coventry City – based on Leeds bringing roughly 4,500 supporters. We would also be subject to increased police and stewarding costs for this game. We felt it was important for us to be clear with our supporters over this process and why we came to this decision. Therefore, we can confirm that: Sky Blues supporters will pay £45 at Elland Road, which is the Adult away supporter price which has been decided by Leeds United. This is ultimately their decision. Leeds United supporters will pay £37 at the Coventry Building Society Arena, which is the Category A Adult away supporter price which has been decided by Coventry City. This is ultimately our decision.”

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