New chief executive wants to connect with Burnley fans

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CLARETS chief executive Lee Hoos intends to connect with the supporters as he begins his drive to attract more people to Turf Moor.

The former Southampton and Leicester City CEO - who also had eight years on the Fulham board of directors - has been blown away by the level of support for the club, since taking up the reins from Paul Fletcher in December.

But, with the season ticket campaign for next season anticipated next week, the American is eager to tap further into the potential fanbase to help give the club the best chance of success in view of the drop in Premier League parachute payments over the next two seasons.

Hoos said: “The one thing that has really struck me is how many season ticket holders there are in comparison with the population.

“It’s an unbelievable take-up, 10,000 out of a town of 80,000 people is phenomenal.

“That is real loyalty. That is real dedication.

“I’d definitely like to get more on top of that, but you can see the support.

“Maybe that’s the difference between the north and south, football is a religion here.

“People are really passionate about their club, they’re all dyed in the wool, and you’ve got a board that’s just as passionate as the people out there in the rest of the stadium.

“But we’ve had two years (of parachute payments), this year and last year, at 50%, and next year it goes down to 25% for the next two years.

“It’s important that in order to see quality on the pitch we have to have the resources to get that quality again.

“Season tickets are the number one priority, that is the biggest single source of revenue coming in after the parachute payments.”

The strategy for next season’s tickets will soon be revealed, but Hoos knows it is about the fan enjoying the experience and feeling they are getting value for money: “First of all it’s making sure people know this is very good value here. If you look at it you can get season tickets for the equivalent of £15 a game.

“For me that represents value, and some of the mystery shops that the Football League do, the feedback we got was that Burnley was good value for the ticket.

“Also, it gets you involved with the club.

“And we’ve just come through the January window where we fought very hard to make sure we kept our assets that are capable of getting us promoted.”

Hoos also intends to involve the fans in garnering opinion on certain matters, and plans are afoot for regular meetings: “I’m trying to get a consultation committee together.

“I’ve met a couple of times with the Clarets Trust and the supporters’ club, and they’re good guys, but I would like to broaden that experience and really select a few people at random.

“We’ve written to a few this week just to try to get a group of about 10, including the Trust and supporters’ club.

“But we’re trying to get someone from a corporate box and someone that’s a season ticket holder, and other people from our database who haven’t been for a while, just to get the cross view of the whole club and really get that input and that communication.”