Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich's determination to wind-back costs has continued.
The Observer says first-teamers have had their allocation of free tickets halved to four a game, starting with the FA Cup third-round tie against Southend. Other employees have also seen the long-standing perk pared back in the latest bout of economising by a club once famous for their prodigious spending.
The extent of the economising at Stamford Bridge has surprised club insiders, who describe the restrictions on complimentary tickets as "petty". The latest measure will increase match day revenues by a few thousand pounds yet risks upsetting those individuals most important to Chelsea's sporting and financial success.
Accustomed to the larger allocations, several players will now have difficulty sourcing tickets for friends and family. The club allows them to buy up to 10 more tickets, but the cost is deducted directly from their wages.