Sheffield Wednesday: Owls aim for ticket record

Milan Mandaric hopes the Owls will give fans more to smile about next season
Milan Mandaric hopes the Owls will give fans more to smile about next season

Sheffield Wednesday hope that their season-ticket sales will have reached a new high when the deadline for discount prices arrives at 5pm today.

The Owls kicked off last season with 16,500 season-tickets holders - the best figure for 20 years, which is as far back as their records go.

The club hope to surpass that figure today after a rush for tickets over the last week, on top of 11,000 that went in an initial discount period in January.

Chairman Milan Mandaric has welcomed the fans’ backing. He said: “My most important message to them is ‘thank you so much for all the loyalty and support,’

Last year’s demand was fuelled by promotion to the Championship but after a season spent mostly at the bottom end of the League One table it is a tribute both to the fans’ loyalty and the Owls’ pricing structure that support remains so high.

More supporters buy season tickets nowadays than when the club were thriving in the Premier League.

For example, in the comparable summer period in 1992, after the team had finished third in the top flight, 12,000 season tickets were sold.

The following year, after the team had played in Europe and reached the finals of both domestic cups, the figure was still only 13,500.

Ticket office manager Alastair Wilson told the Star: “We’ve been really busy, and Saturday is likely to be the busiest day; a lot of people leave it until the final day.

“I was looking back through the records; last year we got over 16,500, the best for 20 years, and more than when we were last in the Premier League.

“Obviously we hope to get more than that this time, fingers crossed. We’ve been moving up towards that figure.”

Fans will still be able to buy season tickets after today but prices rise on Monday.

Even so, there is usually another burst of buying each year after the release of the fixtures whets the appetite and the start of the season draws near.

Alastair added: “Doncaster have come up, Huddersfield and Barnsley have survived, and Leicester, Derby and Forest will be coming here; there will be a lot of big, fairly local games to look forward to.

“The savings to be made are substantial before the discount deadline; for example a season ticket bought for the Kop (£385 up to 5pm today) means that in effect you are getting eight home games free.”

Wednesday launched a six-week discount spell in January. Sales were then suspended, and reopened after their status was confirmed.