The cost of supporting Celtic

By Sean Clifford

April 27, 2021

For most of us, our love for Celtic will over-ride the value of any material possession.

Some of the feelings experienced watching the Celts, especially in the last few years outweigh any monetary sum in the world. Still, do we ever take a step back and calculate the cost of following our beloved team?

Particularly, pandemic football has provided real insight into the realms of fan experience. Not able to enjoy the delights of Celtic Park in the flesh, we have had to make do with our TV screens. Nevertheless, that did not stop most average non-concession adults from shelling out a minimum of £510 for an exclusively virtual season ticket [Celtic FC]. Some Celtic fans have shelled out far more than this to varying degrees I will point out.

Realistically, we all knew the precarious financial situation football may be in as a result of COVID-19. Consequentially, Celtic supporters stayed faithful through and through, just like the famous song told us. Of course, the brilliant Celtic backers have been promised some sort of “added value” for this purchase. However, no such fulfilment of this pledge has come to light as of yet [The Scottish Sun].

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – MAY 19: Celtic fans show their support prior to the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Hearts at Celtic Park on May 19, 2019 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

     Celtic supporters do not just fork out for season tickets; the reality is far more complex

Season tickets only guarantee entry via turnstile or virtual means to Celtic home fixtures. When following the Bhoys away, we all pay a pretty penny. Going to away matches costs a substantial sum of money, but so does watching them on the television.

As per our current procedure in Scotland, Sky Sports hold special rights to air all live Scottish Premiership action [Sky Sports]. Presently, you’ll need to keep £32 a month spare to afford a standard sports bundle [Sky]. Over the course of a year, you will pay a minimum of £384. That is great, but what about if Celtic venture into the captivating echelons of European football?

Exclusivity is king in modern day football broadcasting. We can see this being reproduced by BT Sport, who hold full leverage over hosting Champions League and Europa League action. Costing a cool £25 per month, make sure there is an extra £300 down the sofa if you fancy a full year’s supply [BT Sport].

Tackling the matter of domestic cup football, Celtic are usually cream of the crop in Scotland. Not in 2020/21, though that is a different conversation. BBC Scotland show 11 Scottish Cup ties per year distributed throughout competition rounds which is free-to-air [BBC]. Nonetheless, if Celtic are not picked up on any selected screenings, then you’ll find the Hoops in cup action on Premier Sports.

Premier Sports hold the rest of the liberties towards the Scottish Cup, whilst are the only channel in Scotland to catch Betfred Cup clashes [Premier Sports]. The Betfred Cup will soon become the Premier Sports Cup from 2021/22. The channel has brokered a deal to rename the tournament whilst retaining coverage until 2026/27 [SPFL]. To observe, it’ll cost a standard rate of £10.99 every month, though Virgin Media customers will contribute £12.99 [Premier Sports].

Annually, you should be prepared to part with something along the lines of £131.88 to £155.88. Lastly, merchandise has remained a key source of illustrating our pride championing the Bhoys. As a bonus, it gives us the option to put money into the entity we all respectively cherish.

Adult replica jerseys at the start of 2020/21 were available for a minimum of £60, which is still the case for away & third kits [Celtic FC Club Shop]. Albeit, the home jersey has seen a reduction to £30 to acquire [Celtic FC Club Shop]. Going the whole way and collecting the trio, it would’ve taken £180.

Overall, covering all bases as a Celtic fan for a whole year will cost you a minimum of £1,505.88. This is including the choice to buy all three shirts, not something everyone will participate in. Quite a bit of money, isn’t it?

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