The forthcoming football season could be the one when disenchanted fans turn their back on the sport for good, it has been claimed.

Journalist and presenter Adrian Goldberg has been gathering evidence of a rising tide of apathy among supporters tired of being priced out of uncompetitive games.

His findings will appear in a new documentary, where he claims football has lost its soul and become the plaything of foreign billionaires like Roman Abramovich and Malcolm Glazer.

His 40-minute documentary - called Manchester Disunited - will be aired for the first time later this month at the Midlands Arts Centre in Birmingham.

"Football has become a bloated, self important, self obsessed game and I think the fans are getting sick of it," said Mr Goldberg.

"Last season average attendances fell in the Premiership, and I think this season will be the one when the chickens come home to roost. I think we will start to see some fans boycotting games.

"Locally, I think Birmingham City are going to have a real job attracting people because of their pricing structure, and nationally in the Premier League I think attendances will be lower.

"There will be a lot of fans turning their back on the game, because of the ridiculous kick-off times, which have been arranged solely for TV, and the high prices."

Mr Goldberg's film particularly focuses on Manchester United, where the Glazer family's takeover has saddled the world's second richest club with millions of pounds of debt.

He questions why people like Malcolm Glazer at Old Trafford, and Roman Abram-ovich at Chelsea have bought the clubs and why their involvement is damaging the game.

"Their exact motives are difficult to fathom because these sort of people are not answerable to the fans.

"They don't give interviews, either, but I think it is down to vanity and greed.

"There has been a real lapse by the football authorities in allowing anyone with money buy a club rather than operating it as an asset to their local community."

During the making of his film, Mr Goldberg attempted to contact Man United, the Premier League and the FA, to no avail.

"I didn't get a single email response from them. But at Barcelona, which is owned by the fans, the vice president saw me for half an hour at the drop of a hat.

"They are run by the fans for the fans. Barca don't have advertising on their shirts because it is the supporters' wishes.

"The vice president told me this makes life more difficult, but the club is still successful."

The Glazer takeover of Man Utd in 2005 triggered Mr Goldberg's film, although he had become increasingly disgruntled with the way clubs were being run in recent years.

"When many clubs became plcs, that left a nasty taste in the mouth, and it got worse with the breakaway Premier League where more wealth was concentrated in fewer clubs. Aston Villa shows the danger of clubs becoming plcs. You have fans who bought shares who think they are buying a slice of the club, but they don't have any influence.

"Every year the shareholders vote for Doug Ellis to stand down, but he stays because he owns more shares.

"Now we have seen the biggest club in the Midlands going down and down and no one able to halt the decline."

Mr Goldberg's film also features AFC Wimbledon and FC Utd of Manchester, where fans have banded together to set up their own clubs.

"Instead of taking the punishment, supporters have proved they can do it. They don't have to put up with this rubbish."

Although he was not nostalgic for the 1980s, Mr Goldberg said the all-seater stadia had damaged much of the match day experience. It has nothing to do with safety and everything to do with finance. It means the clubs can charge more for tickets, while it is much harder to sit with your friends.

"Most fans would welcome the return of terracing. Many of the big new grounds in Germany like Dortmund and Schalke have huge standing areas still."

The reduction in competition was another factor in reducing fans' enjoyment.

"This season it is difficult to see beyond one team winning the Premiership, the same one which won it for the last two years - Chelsea.

"How tedious is that? The strength of English football always used to be how many teams could win the prizes.

"In the late 1970s and early 1980s we had Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest winning European Cups and clubs like Ipswich and my team West Brom playing in Europe regularly."

There had been some improvements, with more women, Asian and black supporters going to grounds, but the prices had ruled out many ordinary fans.

"The business side of the game is dominating the sporting aspects. The soul of the game resides with the fans, and they have to take it back from the money men who have driven us down a cul-de-sac.

"The game is about community and enjoyment, a Saturday afternoon having a laugh with your mates and cheering your team on."