Dundee United’s Empty Seats Policy, Lost Revenue and Flawed Decision Making

Dundee United’s board of directors this morning took the somewhat inevitable decision to sack Jack Ross after just ten weeks in charge of their football team. It’s a results business and losing 9-0 at home to a rampant Celtic on Sunday afternoon was the straw that broke the camel’s back as far the Dundee United support and indeed the Board were concerned. Dundee United released the following short statement via the club’s official website.


Liam Fox will take charge of the the first team on an interim basis with the focus now fully on Wednesday’s Premier Sports Cup match with Livingston.

No further comment will be issued by Dundee United at this stage.

United went into the game on Sunday on the back of some horrendous results including that mauling away to AZ Alkmaar that ended their European adventure. And having lost to Hearts, St Mirren and Livingston the last thing that Jack Ross needed was a visit from the Champions, who actually won the league at Tannadice back in May but only via a 1-1 draw.

A point was all that was needed for Celtic to wrap up the title but the other crucial point was at that stage Dundee United were able to compete, hold their own against a team hungry to get their hands on the cinch Premiership trophy.

So how could it all go so badly wrong for Dundee United over the summer? It’s basically down to bad decisions that are being taken and in this regard their Board need to take a close look at themselves. One example of this was a decision on Sunday to keep empty the corner section above their tunnel which is often allocated to away fans when Celtic visit.

Now if Dundee United felt that they could sell these tickets to their own supporters, then fair play to them. But on the dreadful form that they were enduring going into Sunday’s match that hardly seemed likely. And incidentally fair play to the Dundee United supporters who did get along to the game, there couldn’t have been much optimism ahead of the Celtic game. Their fans who stayed to the end especially deserve credit, that’s exactly how to support your club.

But this photograph shows the madness of Scottish football. Here’s a team that is struggling and who might need to bring in one or two signings ahead of the transfer window closing on Thursday night. Their board were aware of this in the run-up to the game against Celtic yet with money tight for many Scottish clubs – including Dundee United – they choose to keep shut a section of their ground that had the tickets been given to Celtic fans, would have been snapped up in no time at all.

That extra revenue could easily have gone towards funding a new signing, or indeed paying off the manager that they appointed ten weeks ago. And if anyone still wants to argue that keeping out Celtic – or indeed supporters of theRangers – resulting in empty seats like this example as it may prove some sort of advantage on the field then they just need to look at the Dundee United scoreboard at the weekend.

READ THIS…Scott Parker sacked then in the words of Jim Spence “Jack Ross has left the building…what a mess”

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk


  1. Maybe, Dundee United and every other club in the SPL do not want to give you and the other glory hunters a home game.

  2. It is hard to dislike Dundee United, and their fans are, in the main, a decent bunch of people. But “what goes around comes around”, and they are now paying the price for the appalling asset stripping of 2015 when, for reasons of sheer money grubbing, they sold Stuart Armstrong, Gary Mackay-Steven and Nadir Ciftci to us, and failed to replace them.
    Jim McLean must be turning in his grave! Jack Ross seems to have the habit of upsetting everyone wherever he goes, but the faults lie deeper than that. Do they want a good football team at Tannadice? And one cannot help thinking that the spectre of a forced amalgamation with the chaps across the road (whose own Board of Directors have also landed their club in trouble on many occasions) has come a little closer.