Surprise! MLSEL raising seat prices

LANCE HORNBY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 7:43 AM ET

Market success has come with a price for Toronto FC fans.

The club is increasing ticket prices by an average of 13% across the board and will not include the 2008 Major League Soccer all-star game in its subscribers package.

One season-ticket holder contacted Sun Media complaining about the new price formula and warned TFC games will become a "suit parade, just like they've done with the Maple Leafs and Raptors."

Tom Anselmi, executive vice-president and COO of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd., says only a couple of protests have been lodged to TFC offices so far.

"We expected some calls, but about 40% of our capacity (BMO Field holds 20,000) will see only a $2 increase," Anselmi said. "What could be skewering the numbers for some buyers is that they got the early bird special last year with a 10% discount.

"I think we're priced very favourably in comparison with a team such as the Blue Jays. We're in the top half of our league, but we're not the most expensive."

The expansion franchise already had sold 7,000 season seats before the announcement of David Beckham's move to the MLS doubled that figure. In addition to the capped 14,000 subscribers, there's a wait list of 2,000 heading into 2008.

The lowest price seats will be up to $12 next year from $10, with reds going to $58 from $53 and the high-end club ducats to $77 from $70.

The 15 regular-season games remain in the package, with four vouchers for friendlies, down from five games this year when one game in the FIFA Under-20 tourney was included.

Subscribers will get first crack at tickets for the summer all-star game, but it's not part of their package.


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