Parma, 20 October 2021 – The press conference to present the new 2021/22 season ticket campaign at the Tardini stadium was attended by Parma Calcio’s Corporate Managing Director, Jaap Kalma.

“Today is a happy and beautiful moment because after a year and a half we can announce the start of the season ticket campaign. It took a while, but the important thing is that we can announce it. We have already opened the stadium, but it’s now the time when we return to the normality of being able to purchase season tickets, to go to the stadium and experience the game together. The last year and a half has been tough from an economic point of view but above all for what we are doing here altogether. We are creating a unique show, it’s not just about the players on the pitch, but it’s something that is lived around: football is something that is created between the public and the players, in this place that is the stadium. Without the fans, it’s not the same thing. This is a very important step for the club, and for the President too: on September 18 last year he bought the club and this is his first season ticket campaign, and finally he can experience the stadium as it should be”.

We have worked a lot in recent months to be able to manage matches during the pandemic safely. The controls are many, the protocols complicated, we want to follow everything properly because we are a responsible club, but at the same time we want to avoid inconveniences; I think there are no more queues and, despite all the controls, we managed to make going to the stadium as it was before, without any particular inconvenience.  We have taken a big step forward in terms of safety and efficiency, now we are back with season tickets and we can experience the games as they should be experienced. The slogan? We borrowed a chant from the Curva, from the point of view of the fans who represent our 12th man, a concept that we all know well”.

“In terms of total capacity, I don’t expect an answer in the short term, there are many requests from the football industry on the Government’s table, for now, it is 75%, before the end of the year it may be more, also given the vaccination rate, but not before December. In general with the fans in Parma, compared to other cities, here they always try to support the team as has also been seen in the lower divisions. I can’t say that there are fans satisfied with Parma’s start, but I can say that we will make it, it’s a difficult league, but I’m convinced that we will make it”.

“Nobody likes a price increase, we established those of this season during the summer. There was a change of ownership and we made a plan for this season. In May and June, we worked on this plan, and one of the things we looked at was that of pricing, in a broader context: we are running the club on a ten-year plan. This allows you to do a lot more things than an annual schedule. Everything we have seen so far is the result of a long-term approach: the stadium, the investments, the technical staff are part of this. On the ticket prices, we looked at those of other clubs, what happened last year, where we are going, and we felt that the prices we decided are reasonable for the club. There have been those who have asked why we are increasing the prices after relegation, but there is a different philosophy behind it. We believe that the relationship between fans and clubs is not a relationship between a brand and a consumer, but it is something we are creating together: the fans support the team during the good and the bad and are happy to do so. When there is a change like a year ago, you enter on a path in which there is an investment in the new stadium, in the organisation of the club. We felt that this is the moment when we could ask the fans to support this new path, of which everyone is very happy. Just as the President has taken a very big step in terms of investment, we ask the same of the fans. We did not think about reducing prices because of the relegation, that is a different philosophy, just as we have not decided to be like other clubs who go and save because of relegation, indeed we have increased investments towards a long horizon”.

“Apart from the limits imposed by Covid I don’t see a distancing between club and fans, a club can say to remain small, they will lower prices and start saving; people want to return to the division they deserve, given our history but also the symbiosis between the team and the city, for the pride of the city and the team. I only hear fans who are happy for the new path. Nuovo Inizio did a job never done before, fantastic, but there the goal was to save the club; here, we have entered a new phase and we have rethought a number of things. You may have read the positive opinion of the Council on the new stadium, we are very happy with it. A project like this is really very complicated, it touches many aspects of the city, of the life of its citizens. We are on a path with many things to detail. As a newly adopted Parmigiano, I am proud of how this process is managed here in Parma, there is transparency. In other cities, I see complicated processes, but here there is clarity in everything, and I was struck by how the Municipality and other services have managed this process, in an open dialogue. Everything is going very well, as part of a complicated process”.

One of the important choices we wanted to make is to expand and facilitate the possibility of attending competitions to young people and families: the discounts for the Under 14s have increased and those for the Under 18s at the Curva Nord have been extended: it’s a key and central philosophical choice for our strategy, we want to build talents with young players and at the same time we want our support to be extended to fans of all ages”.