Why Celtic deserve the transfer window to justify season-ticket stance

By David Walton

May 26, 2021

Celtic will know they scored an own goal today with their season-ticket renewal campaign.

The Hoops released their attempts to bring fans back for the 2021/22 campaign without a new manager in place. It was telling that Celtic knew it was a blunder they now couldn’t avoid. In their tweet introducing season-ticket renewals, they stated:

“We had hoped to have announced the Manager before providing this update, however we must now begin the renewal process to allow us to prepare for a phased and safe return to Celtic Park for our supporters.”

Interesting language. It’s clear Celtic would love to have avoided this. However, another major complaint is that the renewal campaign is just so disappointing and a letdown for supporters who expected more of an apology from the club.

Renewal prices have been frozen this season. As well as that, Celtic have spent £2.5m to ensure all will be given a £50 retail voucher to spend an official club store. Free entry into a couple of friendly games, an SPWL woman’s match, a free training day at Celtic Park, and a splattering of discounts for restaurants/stadium tours have all been thrown into the mix. But the message from fans is clear – it’s not enough.

Celtic season-ticket renewal campaign can’t be judged until the season kicks off

For many the season-ticket “perks” are a slap in the face. A sign that the football club simply isn’t taking what happened last year seriously enough. That they think fans can just be bought by a couple of free entry tickets and a voucher for the club shop.

But for me, the full picture here cannot be judged until the end of the summer transfer window. After all, whilst we demand payback for last season and signs of generosity from the club, we also demand a wholescale rebuilding of the football club. A rebuild that could easily cost upwards of £25m given the number of players we need to sign.

Where is that money going to come from? Not just from the sale of Odsonne Edouard and Kristoffer Ajer, that’s for sure. If Celtic sell 50,000 season tickets at around £500, that’s upward of £25million in the bank. If that money goes straight towards the club’s rebuild, then the landscape will look a lot different.

New Celtic CEO Dominic McKay has a big rebuilding job on his hands / (Photo by ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP via Getty Images)

If we’re sitting here in two months’ time with our ninth impressive signing in the door and Eddie Howe in the dugout, nobody is talking about season ticket sales. In fact, people will no doubt be praising the club for their actions in the transfer window. Celtic deserve to be given that before we make snap judgements on the decisions taken today.

Failure to strengthen would reflect woefully on season-ticket offerings

Should we fail to strengthen appropriately, that’s the time to show our teeth. But it’s important to remember that we have a monumental rebuild on our hands this summer that needs to be budgeted for. Sure, a decrease in season-ticket prices would’ve been more ideal as opposed to a £50 voucher. Fans likely would’ve appreciated that more.

But they have until June 25th to make their decision. It’s not as if Celtic are telling them to dip in immediately without having a clue as to what Celtic will look like next term. Next month we could have Howe in the door and the atmosphere will have been turned around. All of a sudden people are clamouring to sign up for their season books.

Point being there’s no point just slamming the club for every decision they make. Especially when we don’t quite have the full picture just yet. Let’s see whether their decision not to decrease season-ticket prices leads to an increase in squad investment.

In other news, we take a look at the must-knows for season-ticket holders looking to renew.