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Arsenal have confirmed that their FA Cup fifth-round clash at home to Liverpool will be a 'Category B' fixture, rather than falling under the more expensive ‘Category A’ bracket.
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Following the draw for the next round of the competition made on Sunday, Liverpool supporters’ group Spirit of Shankly wrote to both the Gunners and its own club requesting consideration be given to the pricing of away tickets for the Emirates Stadium clash.
The letter, backed by the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust, expressed concerns about Reds fans having to pay up to 93 pounds to see the game, should it be deemed as a ‘Category A’ fixture as it would be normally.
Spirit of Shankly also raised the issue that fans may be hit by a later kick-off time, due to the potential for live television commitments, thus having an impact on their journey back to Liverpool.
However, following an internal consultation, Arsenal have decided against designating the tie a ‘Category A’ status -- meaning the expected 9,000 visiting Reds supporters can expect to pay no more than 54 pounds, with many seats available for 35.50 pounds.
A Gunners statement read: “Arsenal has announced that the forthcoming FA Cup fifth-round tie against Liverpool will be classified as a B category fixture. This match would normally be designated as an A category game.
“However, after the FA Cup draw was made on Sunday, the club considered a wide range of factors, including our cup draws to date and our forthcoming fixture schedule, and has decided to make it a B category match.”
The tie will be played at the Emirates Stadium on the weekend of Feb. 14/15/16/17, with a final date expected to be announced soon by the Football Association.
Information from the Press Association was used in this report