Latics look for tickets lift-off

Reporter: Latics latest by TONY BUGBY
Date published: 11 December 2008

ATHLETIC are disappointed with the response of fans to their Christmas ticket giveaway.

Discounted ticket sales for the visit of Leyton Orient on Saturday week have not taken off as the club had expected.

Unless there is a late surge in sales, Boundary Park may be barely half full, whereas the club’s owners had been hoping for a near-capacity crowd.

Chief executive Alan Hardy said: “We think it is a terrific offer that a family of four - two adults and two children - can watch the game for £14.

“We are disappointed with the response and had expected to have sold far more than the 1,800 tickets we have done at the moment.

“The last Saturday before Christmas is traditionally a bad day for attendances, which we have recognised by making this offer.”

Two adult tickets can be purchased in advance for £10 while seats for the under-16s and over-65s are £2.

Matchday tickets will still be greatly reduced from normal prices at £10 for adults and £5 for concessions.

The Boundary Park ticket office is open until six o’clock tonight, five tomorrow and from 9am to noon on Saturday.

Tickets for the matches at Crewe on Boxing Day and Huddersfield on January 3 are both on open sale.

Defender Paul Black has an operation tomorrow to repair damaged ankle ligaments.

Athletic are unhappy that an initial scan did not pick up the problem which only surfaced after a second one was taken.

The 18-year-old, who made two first-team appearances as a substitute against Huddersfield and Cheltenham late last season, is still technically on loan at Blue Square Premier club Barrow until the end of the month.

Athletic captain Sean Gregan and on-loan striker Darren Byfield remain their main injury concerns for Saturday’s away game at Peterborough United.

A late decision is likely to be made on whether Gregan plays as the fear is that should he get another blow to his mouth it will reopen the wound sustained last Saturday.

Byfield is battling to overcome the toe injury which ruled him out last weekend as he prepares for the last game of his month-long loan.

Both were hoping to return to training today.

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