COLUMN: What’s the point of pre-season matches?

Pre-season matches rarely live long in the memory - for players or fans.
Pre-season matches rarely live long in the memory - for players or fans.
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You may well hear the old cliches such as ‘getting some much-needed match minutes into the players’ legs’

But seriously, what’s the point of pre-season friendlies?

The scorelines in these type of games are largely irrelevant.

So what if your team has beaten a club from the league above?

If you win every game in pre-season then you’re told that it’s building momentum while others say results are meaningless.

On the flipside, if you have a terrible batch of warm-up games then people are quick to judge teams before a competitive ball has even been kicked!

A few years ago Alfreton beat a youthful Sheffield Wednesday XI 14-0 in a result that drew headlines nationally and globally.

The outcome became a farcical tale for both outfits as Alfreton were unhappy at the age of the squad Wednesday had sent, while the Owls’ received plenty of derision for the collapse.

Don’t even get me started on top-flight teams banking extra cash thanks to long-haul pre-season ‘tours’ abroad..

Friendlies, as people insist on calling them, are made even worse by the fact that clubs continue to charge excessively for the privilege of watching what is a ‘hyped up’ training match.

The whole concept of charging supporters to come through the turnstiles and watch a meaningless match has always baffled me.

Not many other sports could bring in revenue in such a manner.

These kind of games should be free of charge - why not open the ground up for nothing, get the place full and then maybe entice first-timers or families to return at some point.

Surely this would work better in the long term?

* What do you think? Are pre-season games still relevant? Email sport.nmsy@jpress.co.uk or tweet @Ricky_C90 your views