An Issue with L8 Season Tickets
A giant Vlaar shirt acorn
For those supporters who stuck around for the lap of appreciation by the Villa players after the last game of the season, the 3-1 win against Hull City, the clear highlight was when Ron Vlaar crouched down to get his kids attention and then pointed to the giant Vlaar shirt the Brigada 1874 ultras displayed in L8 of the Holte (see below). It was a sign that Villa’s captain was appreciative of the effort Villa fans had gone to. It was a moment that made MOMS ponder, what if this was the norm?
Across the board, the Holte End was in excellent voice with the lower Holte standing all the way through the Hull game, as if to fittingly mark the anniversary of the end of the old Holte End terrace. There were balloons, inflatables and flags, on top of the buoyant atmosphere, and within a minute of the game kicking off, Villa scored. This was a team with one point to their name in six games, but with the Holte End in full effect it was evident the Villa players were inspired.
Much is made about the 12th man, but it takes more than a few facebook and twitter messages to make it happen. It needs planning, imagination and effort in the real world. Hats off to Andy of the ‘Get the Holte Back’ campaign for kick- starting the campaign for the Hull City game and to all the supporters who made the effort with inflatables and balloons to make it a party atmosphere.
After early misconceptions about their ‘ultra’ tag, the Brigada 1874 of L8 of the Holte have been an asset in capturing the imagination of what can happen in the Holte. Imagine bigger displays and a more intense atmosphere across the whole of the Holte to inspire the Villa boys and intimidate all visitors. The Hull game could be a mere tip of the iceberg. Think Dortmund’s ‘Yellow Wall’. Think the Holte End being renown as the best stand in the league for atmosphere.
Villa Park has recently been an easy place to picture up three points for away teams. Villa’s home form has been something the board and management have failed to address, especially in the last couple of seasons. But when the Villa supporters turned their mind to the situation due to the must-win nature of the Hull game, the impact was there for all to be seen.
There have been an increasing number of Villa fans who want to help out in creating a better atmosphere in the Holte on a regular basis. There are plans by some for more banner displays in L2 of the Holte next season to go along with those in L8. Also lads in the North Stand want to get involved too.
The problem in L8 though is while more fans want to join in with the Brigada there – and there are empty seats to fill – the club is preventing that possibility at the moment. There has been ongoing talks between the club, the Football Supporters Federation and the Brigada over this issue. Here’s an earlier statement on the situation by the Brigada 1874.
Brigada 1874 statement on season tickets for 2014/15 in L8
Having endured another season of lacklustre football it must be a real sucker for punishment who decides to sign up for another season. Despite the increasingly derisory performances on the pitch, I’ll be renewing my season ticket once again.
However despite loyal fans desire to sign up for another season, it’s our understanding that there have been some problems with fans getting tickets in certain sections of the ground. Some people have been told that there are no tickets available in L8 this season despite seats being empty for various matches. It’s also come to our attention that fans trying to move their season tickets to L8 and fans wanting to transfer their season tickets into someone else’s name, have both been told that there are no tickets to be had in L8.
This is due to the club blocking between 20-30 seats in the L8 area of the ground on match day. This obviously creates problems for the group in terms of growing and creating a better atmosphere inside the ground as seats are left empty when there is clearly a demand for them.
The clubs reasons for doing this are because people have come over to the section without tickets in the past. Their logic is that if they sell tickets to the section and 20-30 people then move over there will be overcrowding in the area. Their solution to this problem merely means that if people want to join the section they have to buy tickets in different areas of the Holte and move over, opening themselves up for possible ejection from the ground. The club’s position merely perpetuates the problem as people have to move over without tickets.
The group have discussed this matter at length with the club and have also approached the Football Supporters Federation.
While the situation is on-going and the club remain intransigent we are renewing our season tickets in L8 but keeping our options open about where we may be based next season. We’d suggest to everyone in L8 who supports the group to renew where you are for the time being. For those who sit elsewhere in the ground and want to move over to L8, we suggest to keep trying to get your tickets relocated for next season, if the club refuse then get in contact with one of the group members on here or email us at [email protected] and let us know your details, who you spoke to and when and what the response was.
It’s our belief that the club are trying to curtail the actions of the group by cutting off supporters who want to get involved and preventing tickets being sold in L8. We hope that we can resolve this situation with the club in the near future and will keep people posted on any developments.
MOMS has good relations with the Brigada 1874 boys and if there was anything dubious about them, we’d stay clear! Simply put, they’re supporters who want to enjoy match days and passionately back the team through thick and thin (that’s why they use the term ‘ultra’, and it doesn’t mean they are fascists, communists, UKIP, Lib Dems, Celtic fans etc, etc!)
Judging by some of the incidents of passionate fans being mistaken for troublemakers this season that we’ve been privy to (including the Brigada being victims themselves), it seems that some folk who work at the club would prefer it if fans just sat down and kept quiet. Unfortunately, this isn’t really the point of being a supporter. Also, it’s not good for the club – it just leads to a stale and soulless atmosphere and an increasingly easy three points for the away team.
It would be nice if the club were a bit more helpful, less fearful and more progressive in terms of helping the Brigada 1874, if there are a few more fans that want to move to L8. Considering Aston Villa were the first Premier League club to back safe standing, it would be good to see some consistency when dealing with this issue.
Lets see how events move forward over the summer, as it is a key step in helping to build the foundations for a Holte End that can reach back to its roots, defy the apathy of the modern game and roar again on a regular basis. UTV