Travelling fans to the ground are usually only allocated tickets to the North Stand, though high demand usually sees extra allocation granted in the West Stand opposite the dugouts and players’ tunnel.
However, on this occasion the St Mirren board have accepted a request by Rangers for more tickets and therefore granted the visitors full access to the South Stand (official title the West College Scotland Family Stand) despite there being season ticket holders in that area.
A statement read: “Due to the unprecedented demand for ticket requests from Rangers Football Club for the last game of the season on 30th April at Paisley 2021 Stadium, we have decided after careful consideration and consultation with Police Scotland, to allocate Rangers fans full access to the South Stand.
“In order to accommodate this decision we would like to ask all our season ticket holders within the South Stand to contact the Ticket Office, where we will allocate you an alternative seat for the game.
“Requests for alternative seating must be made to the Ticket Office staff by 20th April 2016.
“We appreciate that this may cause some inconvenience but would appreciate your co-operation and we thank you for your continued support.”
This has infuriated many St Mirren fans who view the move as a shameless money making exercise which ignores the wishes of the club’s loyal support.
Many took to fans’ forum Black and White Army to voice their distaste.
One supporter wrote: “So much for our CEO wanting home support behind goals. Why not just give them the whole of main stand and be done with it? This is a betrayal by a board that is no longer interested in supporting the club.”
Another supporter asked: “Can we not just play it at Ibrox and get 50 per cent of the gate or would even our board view this as a step too far?
“Is Phil being told when to play Penny Arcade or Simply the Best to accommodate the ‘unprecedented demand’ for it? This decision is a joke.”
It’s the second time within a year that St Mirren fans have accused their board of pandering to a bigger club for monetary gain. Last summer there was a similar outcry after a Celtic FC banner was hung over the St Mirren club shop, as the Scottish champions were using the ground for their pre-season friendly matches.
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