Premier Concourse Is Back!

Premier Concourse Is Back, as League 1 record gate looks set to be broken!

ALS can exclusively reveal that The Premier Concourse is set to re-open for Boxing Day visit of Bradford City

With total ticket sales already topping an impressive 36,000 nine days ahead of kick-off, SAFC exec director Charlie Methven today confirmed the opening of the Premier Concourse for the Boxing Day visit of Bradford City.

When ALS spoke to him this evening, Methven said: “As of today (Sunday 16th) there are only around 1,500 tickets available for the Bradford game in the main bowl of the SoL. The plan has always been that once the number of seats available drops below 1,500, tickets for the Premier Concourse would go on sale, so tomorrow morning we will go ahead and do that.”

Of the Stadium of Light’s total capacity of 49,000, the main bowl plus premium hospitality tickets account for just over 37,000 and the Premier Concourse for around 12,000, of which 3,000 seats are usually reserved for away fans. Just under 35,000 tickets have been sold to Sunderland supporters thus far. Bradford, meanwhile, have already sold 1,400 tickets and have asked for an additional 600 tickets to meet demand.

“Yes, so if you include all the 2000 tickets that Bradford have now asked for then we are at something around 36,500,” Methven added, “which is ahead of where I thought that we’d be at this point. The long and short of it is that to beat the League 1 record, we need to sell 2,000 home tickets in the Premier Concourse. And to reach our stretch target of 40,000, we will need to sell another 3,500 or so. Usually about 1000 people pay on the day, so we need to shift about 2,500 in the next week and a bit.”

EFL League One’s record attendance is held by Leeds United, with 38,256 for the club’s promotion game against Gillingham in 2008. SAFC is aiming both to beat that and to notch the first third tier attendance of more than 40,000 since the Sheffield derby of 1979 in the old Third Division, which was attended by over 49,000.

Methven said: “As a marketing and sales team, we set ourselves some demanding targets last summer. We wanted to beat Man City’s all-time record average attendance in the third tier, which we are well on track for. We wanted to sell more than 23,000 season tickets, and we now have 23,300 season card holders. We wanted to sell out premium hospitality for one match, and that has been achieved for Boxing Day. And we wanted to generate at least one crowd of 40,000 plus, which is now within reach.

“It is a great tribute to Sunderland fans, the performance levels of the players and the hard work of club staff that we are on track to meet all our challenges, but we do need one big last push to ensure that we nail that 40k attendance. To that end, I do implore all SAFC fans to do what they can to encourage friends and relatives to come along for what is going to be a great, and hopefully memorable, day out.”

There you have it, then. The challenge is within our grasp, so let's fill those spaces, sell those tickets, and get right behind the Lads.

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