A few nights back I watched on TV Negeri Sembilan supporters venting their anger at FAM (Footbal Association of Malaysia) for increasing the ticket price to Malaysia Cup final between their team and Trengganu from RM30 to RM50. The look of pure fury and hate was on their faces. To compound the issue, Trengganu Football Club has announced that they would subsidise the price of the tickets for their fans attending the match. On the same footage, the president of Negeri Sembilan Football Club admitted that their club was not as cash-rich as Trengganu’s and therefore was not able to subsidise those tickets.
And today some rabid fans have gone one step further in expressing their anger by hacking and defacing the FAM’s website ( Malaysia Star report 28 Oct 2011) and demanding that the price of the ticket to be reduced. They also posted vulgarities besides accusing FAM of being a capitalist.
With the kind of football fans, which Malaysian entrepreneur is going to own a Malaysian team? When fans expect to pay low and yet get good players to play, how is the sports going to survive? The players, the managers,the physiotherapists and other support staff have to be paid and the management/organisers have to come up with the money to pay for the total cost of putting up the competition. Someone from FAM has roughly broken down the total cost for public scrutiny and yet they are still being labelled as illogical.
The fans cannot expect a good standard of football without having to pay for the cost of organising the matches. The gate collections will be distributed back to both teams having deducted other costs such as the rent of the stadium ( and yes, the stadium needs to be regularly maintained, doesn’t it?) all these are cost which has to be borne by someone.
The cost of living has risen, just look at the cost of non-controlled food items which are on the increase over the past few years. Just compare the cost of a tin of sardines or even a packet of instant noodles now in 2011 and that in 2007.
These people just do not understand the impact of inflation on the economy. They think they are the only ones affected by the increase in prices. After all the Malaysia Cup Final is not everyday compared to those people traveling by air and whose airport tax have now been increased from RM45 to RM52 ( international passengers have to fork out twice the amount). The only means of transports for people from East Malaysia to come to Peninsular is by plane, like it or not, it is a necessity. Will some dissatisfied people hack and deface Malaysia Airport Bhd (MAB) website?
As I said no private sector is going to come in to develop the sports as public support is relatively poor and many fans are those who are possibly in the lower income bracket and cannot afford paying for tickets. Take a look at the status of football in England, Europe, South America,Japan and Korea. They are all fans-driven. Businessmen own those clubs like they own a property for a profit. No one will do business without a profit. Unlike government which are dependent on tax-payers.
The mental subsidy has gone on into sports now. How sad.
Football in this country cannot develop sustainably without public support which is translated into attending those matches and pay for the tickets. When the game is developed to a high standard only then will the sponsors and private sector, the likes of Tony Fernandes, YTLs and Vincent Tans will come in and you will then see real “stars” like Beckham,Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo :). At the moment these businessmen would rather own lowly English football clubs (and still make money) rather than forming Malaysian clubs with disgusting fans!
So, can Malaysia host FIFA World Cup ? Not even in my great grand children’s life time, I don’t think.
Please prove me wrong.