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Aberdeen, Dundee United to trial later kick-off times to boost attendances

Featured image credit: Lewismccabe/CC BY-SA 4.0/Edited for size

The upcoming Scottish Premiership football matches between Aberdeen and Dundee United have been moved to 6pm as part of a plan by both clubs to attract higher attendances.

Dundee United’s game against Aberdeen at Tannadice on October 8 will kick off in the evening, as will the reverse fixture at Pittodrie on November 12.

The later time of 6pm was chosen at the request of both clubs as part of a wider plan to trial different approaches in pursuit of attracting greater attendances at matches.

Rob Wicks, Aberdeen’s commercial director, said: “We have stated previously that we would like to trial new kick-off times to help boost attendances and over the past few months we have been working alongside fellow SPFL clubs to make this happen.

“We are particularly excited to have the opportunity to try this kick-off time for a home match as we look to improve the atmosphere and increase the opportunity for our wider supporter base, including families, many of whom struggle to make a 3pm kick-off on a Saturday, to come along and enjoy an exciting derby fixture. Feedback from fans will be welcomed and the club will use this data to inform any future changes.”

Luigi Capuano, chief executive of Dundee United, added: “The idea is to boost attendance and allow wider access from our supporter base, including families. 

“There are other positives factors including greater commercial and media exposure and maximising revenue generation for local businesses, but our main priority was in creating opportunity for greater spectator access. After this fixture, we will review the success of the event.”

Last week, the Scottish Football Association told clubs participating in the Scottish Cup this season that they can schedule earlier kick-off times to help reduce their energy bills amid the current cost-of-living crisis.

The Scottish FA board is keen to help clubs guard against the impact of rising energy costs, with earlier kick-off times potentially leading to reduced match-day costs such as floodlighting and heating.