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Season ticket £19 anyone ??

Niall Quinn is confident that Sunderland's "gamble" of cutting season ticket prices next season will pay off in the years to come.

Sunderland fans will save as much as £70 on a season ticket in the 2009-10 season - and younger fans will pay just £1 to watch a game.

The decision bucks the trend in football and Quinn hopes it will result in bigger attendances at the Stadium of Light next season, enabling the club to drive forward.

Quinn, the chairman, said: "We understand the strain the credit crunch is putting on families and households and we hope this will help people to keep supporting their club.

"We spent a lot of time working out what we thought was best for the club, how we could keep the passion burning.

"People will feel that one of the things they don't want to lose is their football and we're trying to make it easier for them - and we're encouraging them to bring young people with them.

"I can't stress the importance of having big crowds. If you lose the atmosphere, you lose a lot. A fuller stadium will be best for the team and that's always been our philosophy. We win games when the crowds are bigger here."

An under-16 season ticket at Sunderland next season (accompanied by an adult) will be priced at £19 - that is £1 per game!

"I would urge every season ticket holder who is renewing to try to bring a young person with them," said Quinn. "For one pound, it's an amazing opportunity and it passes on the love of the club, it makes the future strong.

"I hope people have a moral sense of duty to get young people in, so they can begin loving the club; we're doing everything we can to make it economically possible."

Quinn admits that the decision to cut prices is a risk for Sunderland.

He said: "We're at a crossroads because should attendances dwindle, the economics of the club would have to change - to an extent where we'd have to look at future spending goes, balance our books accordingly.

"The big message from this is: in this tough climate, don't give up on your club. In fact more than that: bring someone else."[/I]

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