Fans rewarded by Bradford Park Avenue turnstile initiative

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Richard Marshall on the attack for Avenue against Leamington on Monday Richard Marshall on the attack for Avenue against Leamington on Monday

Monday’s ‘pay what you want’ experiment was hailed as a success by Bradford Park Avenue and manager John Deacey now wants to see the new faces back on the terraces.

Avenue hosted Leamington in a Conference North fixture and set no maximum or minimum turnstile price, with fans asked to simply make a contribution to get in to Horsfall Stadium to watch the game.

Deacey said: “It was a great initiative by the club and 369 is a decent crowd for a midweek game – and weren’t they entertained!

“It was an end-to-end game which finished 3-2, so however much they paid they got their money’s worth and it was a great atmosphere.

“The crowd was mostly made up of home fans and they were so supportive. They really got behind the team and that does filter down to the pitch.

“If they have been at the last two home games they will have seen plenty of drama and excitement.

“I thought we played great football on Monday night on a pitch that wasn’t conducive to good football. The groundstaff did a fantastic job to get that game on but the surface was still very difficult to play on.

“That’s not their fault as it has been a very bad spell of wet weather and other clubs have had a lot more postponements than we have.”

Deacey feels that the way his team play, they prefer a smooth playing surface. Club officials and volunteers put in a lot of work to get the pitch in the best possible condition and the Avenue boss confirmed that the players appreciate that.

“We like to play the game in the correct manner and I think the players have rewarded the staff for their hard graft and the fans for their support down the years by getting them off their seats,” he said.

“There have been some excellent games at Horsfall over the past few seasons and we will keep trying to give the same level of entertainment. There have been some great FA Cup and FA Trophy nights – just this year alone there were the games against Kidderminster.

“I hope some more of the people from Bradford were in the crowd on Monday and I hope they come back to the next game.

“They have had a look now and they know what Park Avenue are all about and they know what a good standard the Conference North is.”

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