Couple of Football (Soccer) Questions

  1. In the game I watched today (two English Premiere League teams), it was a cold, windy and rainy day. The fans were dressed appropriately; the players wore only their uniforms. Do the rules allow them to wear, like, long underwear or something under their uniforms? Or do they have to tough it out in their kits?

  2. Is there a fundamental difference in the organizational structure of a team called XXX United (where XXX is the name of the city) vs. XXX City? Or is it just a case of two teams playing in the same city (like the Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox)?

  3. About how many EPL games are there in a season (for any one team)? What does a ticket usually cost (not necessarily front-row seats, but not nosebleed seats either)? Also, what about concessions? For example, 16oz of beer at a bar in the US will cost you, say, $3-4 depending on brand; but at a ball game you’ll pay twice that much. Is the same true at European stadiums?

Another question: where do they find all those kids who line up with the players before they come out onto the pitch? Do their parents just enter them in some sort of lottery and hope their names are drawn?

They can wear thermal undershirts and under shorts and if it is really cold that is what they will wear and gloves.

‘United’ is probably the most generic English club name, followed by ‘City’. ‘City’ would indicate the place they came from had official city status, but beyond that neither name tells you anything specific about the club.

Each team plays 38 Premiership games, but there are also FA Cup and League Cup games (how many depends on how they advance in those competitions) and for teams that qualify for Europe there will be Champions League or Europa League games (again how many depending on how the team advances). There is also the one-off Charity Shield and European Supercup (played by the winners of certain competitions the previous season) and the FIFA Club World Cup which teams may be involved in.

I would expect to pay about £30-60 for a seat. Beer is expensive (£5-6 pint? - I haven’t been to the footie for a couple of seasons) and watery. You also cannot drink in the actually seating area, only in the concourse and the club bar. Food is also pretty expensive (£5 for a burger?), though the quality goes from pretty decent to inedible.

  1. Players can wear an assortment of thermal underwear - tights, gloves, snoods are commonly on display. This is accepted for foreign players who are not used to the British climate, it is not seen as a reasonable action for English players to do this, but it does happen occasionally.
  2. The names of the teams are meaningless with respect to City, Utd, rovers etc. They have meaning in terms of the club’s heritage of course, and can be interesting to read about, but they do not represent any general organisational principle.
  3. There’s 38 games - 20 teams that play one another twice. Costs vary around the country - I go to a few Everton games a season and the ticket is normally between 30 and 40 quid (approx $60). It can be substantially higher for clubs with a larger support base, but I don’t know how high - one of the London clubs like Chelsea or Arsenal would be pricey, and hard to get in the first place.

I’ve been to all of the London premiership grounds but it’s always been as an away fan, so I’ve got the ticket through Everton and it’s been reasonably priced.