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Economics Of Football Hard To Figure
Published : 10 Mar 2013 17:56:58
The fixture list doesn't help keep fans in the habit of going to football.
St Johnstone only managed to attract 2,425 fans to McDairmid Park yesterday when Kilmarnock were the visitors. The home side ran out 2-0 winners thanks to goals from Murray Davidson and Gregory Tade in front of the lowest crowd of the season. Manager Steve Lomas recognises that the tough economic climate could continue to keep supporters away from football McDiarmid Park. Lomas said: "Of course we want more fans along but we are in a recession and I'm not going to disrespect our loyal hardcore support. We obviously need more support but the club is trying its best in terms of incentives and that is all you can do. The players are trying hard on the pitch. But it is a difficult time in the economy and people don't have the money. I thought we were pretty dominant in the second half and deserved to win. It was all about bouncing back and going into a three-week break with another three points on board."Lomas was at a loss to understand the prospect of an extended break before pre-split games against Dundee United and Inverness. He added: "We have a three-week break and I don't know what is happening. You get six games in 23 days and you have three weeks off then you come back to two games in five days, Monday night against Dundee United and the Friday night at Inverness. It doesn't help in terms of preparation. But television money is massively important. Of course it is. We can't survive without that, it had to be sorted. Sky and ESPN have both committed to Scottish football. It would have been an absolute car crash without that. But since I have been here we have received the short end of the stick in terms of fixtures."Killie manager Kenny Shiels, whose side now face an uphill struggle to make it to the top-six before the split, also question the wisdom of the fixture programme. He said: "The defeat puts us in the position where we have to win the last three games before the split. Nothing less will do. It is a big ask because Ross County are out next game and they are playing so well. That's the last team you want to play. It's been an unbelievable season where in the worst month of the year normally for weather is February and we played six matches in that period. We had a couple of weeks off in January and we have three off in March. It is hard to figure out. But I'm sure other teams are in the same boat."Looking at the loss to St Johnstone, Shiels said: "When you prepare for a game of football you give specific detail on the opposition and who has to pick up who at set-pieces. We gave away a corner for no reason. It was poor, poor play and then we don't pick up Murray Davidson. It's so annoying. It was really hard to take because there was nothing in the game."