St Johnstone will increase the ticket allocation for away fans at this season’s remaining matches against Rangers and Celtic.
The club will open up three stands at McDiarmid Park to travelling fans of the Glasgow clubs, with home fans housed in the West Stand only.
It means some season ticket holders will be moved from their usual seats to the 3,000 capacity stand.
A statement from the club cited logistics and poor home crowds for the move.
“Seat allocation, ever changing fixture dates and kick off times and a noticeable lack of enthusiasm from our supporters in the fixtures themselves, have all combined to produce a marked reduction in Season Ticket attendees at Celtic and Rangers fixtures over the years,” the statement read.
The club said that previous incentives such as “bring a friend for £10” had very little uptake, and that increased demand from away fans and the requirements of the SPFL meant that there has been a restricted ability to provide an open sale of tickets to their own fans.
The statement added: “Various efforts have been made to address the challenges posed by these matches and this has, in the past, involved the relocation of valued Season Ticket holders in the East and Ormond Stands to other areas of the stadium.
“Season Ticket holders can be very proprietorial over their allocated seats and understandably so. Many may have held by them for a number of years and some have been in their families since the Stadium opened. This is recognised and appreciated by the Board.
“However, the new road and safety requirements, which involve and affect the safety aspects of these fixtures has resulted in material changes in the way in which Celtic and Rangers fixtures will require to be administered in the future.”
The club’s board say they have “carefully considered” the issue as it relates to the interests of St Johnstone fans, as well as the administrative and financial impact on the club.
The statement concluded: “With the foregoing in mind, the Board has decided to trial the remaining matches this season against both Celtic FC and Rangers FC, with an increased allocation to away fans and all Saints fans will be accommodated in the West Stand.
“This stand accommodates in excess of 3000 fans, which going by recent analysis will be sufficient to accommodate the projected likely number of attendees from our home support.
“Existing West Stand Season Ticket holders will be entitled to retain their usual allocated seat. East Stand Season Ticket holders will be provided with alternative unallocated seating within the West Stand.
“The remaining three stands ( North, East and South) will be allocated to away fans.”
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