Portsmouth to consult fans on how to compensate ticket holders - but Sunderland's decision receives huge backlash

It’s been a query many fans have had amid the coronavirus crisis.

Friday, 5th June 2020, 4:49 pm
Updated Friday, 5th June 2020, 4:50 pm

While the health of Pompey’s players, staff and supporters remains paramount, there have been some questions on how ticket-holders for remaining fixtures in the 2019-20 season will be compensated.

Whether League One games resume to conclude the campaign or it is curtailed and decided by a point-per-game-formula – which will see the Blues compete in the play-offs – any games that go ahead will be played behind closed doors.

The Blues had nine league matches remaining before the term was shut down in March, including four at home and five away from Fratton Park.

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With that in mind, Pompey are keen to step up procedures on how fans – either season-ticket holders or those with advance bookings for games – can be reimbursed.

But rather than the board simply making a decision, they’ll first consult the Tony Goodall Fans’ Conference to gauge supporters’ opinions.

A strategy that contrasts greatly to the approach adopted by rivals Sunderland.

On Thursday, the Black Cats confirmed supporters would receive partial refunds on their 2019-20 season ticket if the season is curtailed – but not if fixtures were played behind closed doors.

Sunderland's Stadium of Light. Picture: Malcolm MacKenzie

Meanwhile, fans who purchased their tickets in advance of the 2020-21 campaign have also been left frustrated.

It’s expected that at least a portion of next term will be played behind closed doors because of the Covid-19 outbreak.

But rather than refunds for those particular games, Sunderland have said supporters who renewed season tickets will be granted access to a free stream on the club’s website to watch games.

That solution hasn't proven to be palatable, though, with swathes of Wearsiders ruing the decision across social media.

On Twitter, @sven_safc wrote: ‘That is almost criminal that. Never thought I'd see the day I'd cancel my season ticket but no way can I renew under those conditions.

‘And there’s only me from my household. What about those with multiple season tickets in a household? Disgraceful that like.’

@Yellowbug1969 wrote: ‘I’ve just emailed them to complain. I don’t want a streaming pass and if this season resumes I’ve advised I’ll be contacting trading standards to check my consumer rights to a refund.’

@sniff91 wrote: ‘You can absolutely get in the bin. Disgraceful to not partially refund a household when only one subscription is needed.

‘I've already asked you to cancel my payments and will be cancelling the direct debit with my bank to make sure nothing is taken until this mess is sorted.’