Ever had problems getting tickets at the club you support? Chances are then, you support absolutely anyone. The first time I ever heard of supporters being called clients was when it was uttered by Karen Brady. Little did I know at the time as I spat my tea out that it was a new football club owning euphemism for “Captive audience” that we were seen as sheep and pigs. Heading for the abattoir. A brutal but merciful ending not for us. We have our wallets and purses let. Football clubs don’t fully understand what it takes to be a supporter in the same way that Lords and Ladies will never grasp what it’s like to be working class. The difference is that football clubs don’t actually care. We’re an inconvenience. Corporate money is all that matters. We’re just the poor saps that have our allegiance tested and squeezed till we have nothing else to give. I’m not going into how Brady ran the club other than even now after over 8 years since she was at the club, I still can’t see a photo of her without launching into a tirade of abuse aimed towards her. The disdain that she openly displayed for supporters stopped just short of Karl Oyston’s contempt for Blackpool supporters. I’ve seen with my own eyes and heard with my own ears, how badly supporters are treated by football clubs. I’m reminded frequently as I once again climb on to my soapbox by my good friend Steph that we support a business. This is very true but if businesses in other fields treated their “clients” as football treats their regular customers, that business would quickly go out of existence. This disdain has to a certain extent, always been there but does that make it right that it still happens? Not in my eyes, It doesn’t. There’s a distinct type of supporter that a club wants. However, such as society is a kaleidoscope of different people from different backgrounds, so are football grounds. Now I know you can’t please everyone all the time but surely that should always be the aim. To make every individual feel valued regardless of their level of support. I’m not going to bore you with details of how many decades I’ve been going or how many games and how many grounds but safe to say it’s a fair number. Probably way too many to be normal, but I certainly don’t feel valued. In fact, I’m feeling more and more marginalized. The ticket office at Blues doesn’t exist. The signs are there for it. The fixtures and fittings are there for it but it’s not there. It’s now an after thought in the club shop. A club shop whose assistants are only just out of school. The only experience I ever see belongs to the security guard who is as about as relevant as the meet and greets in some supermarkets. These assistants are not only embarrassingly inept at their job but the surliness with how they serve you with points to why there’s a security guard. If you’ve had the stomach to read my earlier posts, you will know that I don’t discriminate against anyone. I have no preconceptions. I feel I’m being discriminated against because of my age and my reluctance to “go online” to buy my tickets. You could be reading this thinking I’m a wee bit paranoid, a chip on my shoulder. I’m not and I haven’t. I’m looked upon as a dinosaur. I’m getting pretty tired of the shop times being changed at a drop of a hat. Being told that “It’s states on the website”, looked at incredulously. Believe me, I definitely DO go on the website, I go on the thing at least 6 times a day. Before I get to the ground, I make sure they haven’t changed something that relates to what I want to do. When I say they change things without actually updating the site, they change things without updating the site. I’m made to feel at best uninformed, at worst, stupid and that somehow, it’s my fault for not knowing. It’s my understanding that we are being forced to use the online ticketing service because the club just doesn’t want to physically sell tickets anymore. Whether it’s a cost cutting exercise or they just want to move further away from whom they see as undesirable. Better to sell 100,000 shirts to fans who never go than an away ticket to a loyal, time served supporter.