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Football for the select elite


UEFA have allocated Real Madrid and Atlético 20.000 match tickets apiece for the Champions League final in Milan. A quarter per team of the overall capacity of the stadium (approximately 80.000) which will be reduced on the night of the final to 71.900 seats. In Basel, (venue for the Europa League final) the capacity is half that of Milan with both Liverpool and Sevilla being offered 10.236 tickets per club. Slightly higher in terms of percentage but far from the previous agreed allocation quantities that even then I felt were abusive: with a third of the capacity being allocated to either team plus the final third being allocated by UEFA who would cater for local demand, sponsor request and VIP invitees.

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With the announcement of the allocation equating to a quarter of the capacity, I'd go so far as to claim that this is a huge failing. More-so as there is no guarantee that the tickets at each club will make their way down to the regular fans, as each club will set up their respective distribution methods and have to allocate a quantity to their own internal compromises of sponsors, dignitaries, former players, cousins , friends etc. This will affect the initial  allocation of 20.000 for the Madrid clubs and in turn the 10.000 heading for Sevilla. In both circumstances the quota of tickets will fall short of satisfying the demand as the case nowadays in all finals.

This could be seen as a reflection of the world we are building, which, with each passing day the gap increases between the 'haves' and the 'have-nots'. Sure, I acknowledge there are sponsors, dignitaries and public relations agreements that need to ne upheld but at what proportion? If less than half of the stadiums in Milan and Basel are populated with 'real fans' this can only but damage the foot-soldiers supporters relationship with their club whilst the privileged sit rubbing their hands in the VIP area enjoying the pre-match catering. There is no way to justify this unfair ticket distribution. There is a social symmetry that extends to all walks of life, football included. Then the 'chosen few' have the audacity to complain that modern society use their vote to stir things up. I mean really ...   

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