Bilic: This is not Les Miserables

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic has weighed in on the recent debate around ticket prices, saying that football matches should be affordable because it is the sport for the masses.

The owners of Liverpool FC, Fenway Sports Group, recently retracted plans for an increase in ticket prices and issued an apology to disgruntled fans, who left a match at Anfield in the 77th minute to protest the proposed price of tickets.

"It's not polo, it's not golf, it's not a sport for upper class," Bilic told The Mirror. "It's the most popular sport and shouldn't be a privilege for a family to go and watch.

"This is not Les Miserables, this is football. It should be affordable. It should be like that with football. We should keep the fans happy not only with the quality of the game but also with the prices of tickets."

The Croatian manager will therefore be pleased with his own club's policy, as the Hammers look to offer low prices for season tickets when they move into the Olympic Stadium next season.

"We are a good example, the board and club are progressing in that way," he added. "We definitely for next season will have cheapest season tickets and cheap tickets for under 16s. Clubs need money but not from tickets.

"As far as I know clubs are not living out of ticket sales. They have much bigger income from other things. I think a balance can be found to keep fans happy. Otherwise we will have empty stadiums."

After their dramatic extra-time win over Liverpool in the FA Cup on Tuesday, the Hammers will return to Premier League action against Norwich City at Carrow Road on Saturday.

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