Liverpool FC Looking to Solve Anfield No Shows Problem

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Although Liverpool FC typically sell out almost all of their home tickets, they still have an issue with empty seats. No, it’s nothing like “The Emptyhad” as Manchester City detractors like to call The Etihad, City’s home venue. It’s not a problem relating to lack of interest, it’s that a lot of fans simply don’t show up.

There are about 2,000 seats that although sold, typically go unfilled at Anfield, and the club is looking into what can be done about that. Additionally, Liverpool Football Club must contend with the visitor side seats that go unsold/inspire no shows.

The first meeting of the Local Supporters Forum was held, coincidentally right before Manchester City came to town, for that exciting 4-3 Reds win that was so enthralling, it served as the perfect marketing promo for the Liverpool FC product.

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Nine forum members and five representatives from the club, including chief executive Peter Moore were in attendance. The session focused on two issues: filling the empty seats and the Liverpool FC work in the community.

“Our fill rate is around 94 per cent but our sales rate is around 99.6 per cent with the 0.4 per cent being unsold visitor tickets or changes to segregation etc. Every available home seat is sold,” says Phil Dutton, Liverpool FC Head of Ticketing and Hospitality, according to the club website.

“This is an obvious problem and, like everyone else, I get incredibly frustrated when I see seats left empty at Anfield because I know there are so many people who would readily fill them.”

“We need to improve the platform for supporters to use in relation to this matter but we also need people to talk to us. If someone knows in advance of a game that they aren’t going to make it then if they let us know we can do something about it.

“If they don’t tell us then the problem doesn’t go away because we can’t give a supporter’s seat to someone else if they’re not in it by 10 past three because there’s a risk that the original ticket holder could turn up at quarter past three.”

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With a such a fun to watch team, and one that is currently flying high at the moment (both Liverpool FC and Reds winger Mo Salah top current respective power rankings this week), it’s a shame to think that prime viewing slots are going to waste right now.

Forum members have submitted some suggestions as to what the possible solutions could be, but many are not practical. The ideas are certainly well meaning and sound favorable on paper, but in the real world, still have some issues. Dutton is doing whatever he can to try and fix it, and it will be interesting to see what he, the club, and the supporters forum will do moving forward.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.

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