Carlisle must do more for fans

rss logoThursday 2nd January 2014 20:46

Brunton Park: Attendances are suffering

Brunton Park: Attendances are suffering

Carlisle United FanZoner Ryan Waugh believes the club need to do more to attract fans back to Brunton Park.

The walk down to Brunton Park on Sunday for the Peterborough United game was a strange feeling for me.

Only a few years ago, the walk would be filled with excitement, banter and plenty of gossip about the upcoming match but where the club was ultimately heading, life was good down at Brunton Park.

However, the current predicament is not one of solace but some worry and neglect. On the field, Graham Kavanagh is doing the best he can with the resources available to him and so far, his tenure has brought about of positivity and some success.

The match against the Posh was a most lively affair, goals, near misses, a straight dismissal, bookings, a saved penalty and a cracking game for both sets of supporters, especially the home contingent and a certain Sir Alex Ferguson observing from the director's box.

However, I stood in the Warwick Road end of the ground and felt that the good days had certainly departed us for the time being anyhow.

The stadium lacked any sort of atmosphere whatsoever, the ground, even though has a lot of character about it, needs a real amount of serious work to be carried out on every side of Brunton Park and this will cost a lot of dosh.

With the club having literally no money to invest in the squad, the ground is down the pecking order in terms of priority. The crowd of just 3,904 was pretty paltry to be fair, take away just under 300 Posh supporters and you can see why I claimed it was paltry.

The club have clearly stagnated, obvious to all, but what is being done to correct this? The directors are good people who clearly have the club at heart but do not have much financial power or 21st Century business ideology.

We need to get the masses back into the ground on a more regular occurrence. The manager, Kavanagh, is in current operation mode to change our style of play and if he is given time, the progress will surely arrive.

The directors have backed the former Republic of Ireland man and now the hierarchy need to use what wisdom they have to conjure up ways of getting the paying public into the old ground every two weeks.

If we can take 5,500 supporters for a round trip of 144 miles to Sunderland in the FA Cup this weekend, why cannot we have 6,000 home fans every couple of week, also include any away supporters and we would be averaging nearly 6,500 - 7,000 a game.

The people are out there but we need to vision up the quality ideas to pull them in. One of our League One rivals Brentford, have a brilliant initiative which they have now used for the last two years. A home fixture is picked in the season and the club provide the supporters with the opportunity to pay what they want on the gate.

This guarantees a healthy crowd and if the team produce the stuff on the pitch, some fans will surely come back for more. This Christmas we played both Preston North End and Peterborough United in the space of four days at home.

Why did the club not make it a two for one offer for paying adults, this would surely have swelled the crowd for both games and brought some sort of atmosphere to the stadium which it is clearly craving at this present time.

The directors control the club and make the big calls, maybe they need to look at themselves and ponder why the stadium is more or less empty every two weeks - conjuring up some well worthy ideas and implementing them might just do the trick.

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