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The Football Fans Guide
By: Bill Osborne
WITH the costs rising at an average of 17% each season, help is at hand for Grimsby Town fans in the shape of a brand-new book,The Football Fans' Guide, which will save fans a packet over the season and ensure they make the most of matches during 2007/08
Over the coming season supporters of the 92 Premiership and Football League clubs will travel over nine billion miles in pursuit of glory - the equivalent of 12 round trips to Jupiter. Fans of Championship Plymouth Argyle - appropriately nicknamed the Pilgrims - have got it toughest. Their most-committed followers will cover the biggest distance: they face a gruelling 5981 miles on the roads and railways in support of Ian Holloway's Green Army during 2007/08. Chesterfield's supporters have got it the easiest. They will have to cover just 1966 miles to be at each the 23 away games during their League One campaign.
It all adds up to a billion-pound industry, with fans bearing the brunt financially - with petrol, train tickets and air fares a significant part of the cost of being a football fan - but The Football Fans' Guide will help fans reduce the cost of travel, food, refreshment and hotels.
Using a matchday basket of goods (including travel, food and drink) for the average away trip of 140 miles (we've worked out the mileage), calculations show supporters using The Football Fans Guide could save between Â£10 and Â£40 per head - meaning fans can expect to recoup the Â£9.99 cover price on just one away trip; and the most-committed fans could save hundreds of pounds.
Mark Bisson, who compiled the guide, said: "Fans are fed up with paying over the odds for travel, food and tickets. We can't help with the prices of tickets - that's down to the clubs - but we can help supporters save a small fortune on travel, food, refreshment and places to stay."
"As expected the book includes 92 comprehensively researched guides to every Premiership and Football League club, and what to do pre- and post-match in the surrounding areas - plus an extended guide for the new Wembley Stadium.
"But The Football Fans' Guide breaks new ground with the inclusion of vital information to plan your trip, including how to save money on petrol, rail fares and flights; and a detailed 'pit-stops' guide to the best pubs, cafÃ©s, hotels and supermarkets close to the major motorways."
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