Lazio fans stay away after season-ticket price hike

Serie A side Lazio have sold the lowest number of season tickets in a decade, with fans to stay away after a 10 percent increase in prices ahead of a campaign in which the team failed to reach the Champions League.

Lazio have increased season-ticket costs for the first time in 11 years, resulting in sales dropping to a level last seen when the club last hiked entry prices in 2004.

Il Corriere dello Sport reports that Lazio, who missed out on the Champions League group stage after losing their playoff against Bayer Leverkusen, had sold 12,300 season tickets up to the start of this week.

Of that figure, almost 4,000 have been bought by fans under the age of 15 at reduced prices.

It is a drop of 5,000 on last season's figures only days before the club officially stop selling season tickets for 2015-16 campaign, and over 10,000 fewer than were sold for 2013-14.

The fans' continued animosity towards club president Claudio Lotito is also suggested as a factor in the lack of sales, although supporters headed to the Stadio Olimpico in droves in the second half of last season as the team pushed for a top-three finish.

Barring a last-minute surge in sales, the club could see its lowest recorded distribution of season tickets since Lotito became club president in 2004 -- 12,877 in 2010-11.

By comparison, Salernitana, the other Italian club owned by Lotito, commenced their Serie B campaign with over 22,000 fans at the Stadio Arechi last weekend.

Lotito enjoys a positive reputation among Salernitana fans and the club could see higher average gates in the second tier this season than Lazio in the top flight.

Lazio secured a narrow 2-1 win over Bologna in their Serie A opener this season before falling to a 4-0 defeat at Chievo.