World Cup 2006 Blog

From our reporters in Germany

"Tickets, any spare tickets?"

claire_heald66.gifLONDON - The number of tickets for England supporters for their World Cup matches has been stirring up fans' consternation since allocation day. They have just eight per cent - that's around 4,000-5,000 - at each group game. Meanwhile, the sponsor companies share 500,000 for the tournament - one sixth of the total tickets.

About 100,000 England fans are expected to travel Germany to soak up the atmosphere - but mostly they'll be doing that outside the ground. So the Football Supporters' Federation has launched a petition to protest.

It accepts that sponsors contribute cash to the game, but as the federation's Alan Bloore puts it: "I know a lad who follows England abroad, but he hasn't got one ticket. Yet somebody could go and buy a beer, burger or cola and get a ticket for an England match. I'll argue black and blue that it's wrong."

If you've missed out on tickets so far, maybe the last-gasp chance to go through sponsors' promotions is a good thing? If not, there's always the petition, bound for Fifa boss Sepp Blatter when it's complete.

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Great article.

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  • 2.
  • At 04:43 PM on 22 May 2006,
  • mspoke wrote:

I find this all a little misleading, if 8% go to fans and one sixth of the tickets go to sponsors then who do the rest go to?

I think it's unfair to pick out sponsors without illustrating exactly where the rest of the tickets have gone.

If anybody reads this blog from the FSF perhaps they could enlighten us as to how the rest of the tickets are allocated.

Perhaps we are then able to have an 'informed' view.

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  • 3.
  • At 06:15 PM on 22 May 2006,
  • Claire Heald wrote:

Not wishing to sink the blog with numbers, mspoke, the organising committee's rough figures for allocation are: Of 3.07m tickets - 16% to sponsors and suppliers;
11% hospitality;
9% the German FA;
Originally 16%, later 19% after returns, shared between each side's FA for fans per match;
36% global public ballot;
6% non-qualified Fifa member countries;
2% tv broadcasters.

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  • 4.
  • At 07:55 PM on 22 May 2006,
  • JL wrote:

I wouldn't give them any tickets. They can't behave.

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  • 5.
  • At 08:28 PM on 22 May 2006,
  • Simon Gray wrote:

Just to let you know we are having exactly the same problems here in Germany.
You cant buy a ticket for love or money,but where ever you go there are competitions to win tickets,even the german lottery has done a competition with thousands of tickets to win, with most probally going to people who couldnt care about football.
Also thousands of tickets have gone to politicians of all grades, even though the national newspaper "Bild" has run a campaign and printed all the names of the politicians it has done no good.
The ticket allocation is a complete farce and nearly everyone here is as unhappy you are.
So i will be doing the same as most fans and watch the games on the giant screens or maybe i will get lucky by winning a competition.

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  • 6.
  • At 11:20 PM on 22 May 2006,
  • mspoke wrote:

Claire - thanks for the figures, I don't think it's as bad as people are making out then. Yes, it is a paltry amount of tickets for the England but given that this is a 'World' Cup and the stadiums can only take a finite number of spectators then I don't think it is all bad. Perhaps the 36% going to a global public ballot is the one to look at, it's an easy target to say 'bad' sponsors.

In reality we are looking at 54% for 'fans'.

Better get eating a pile of chocolate, drinking fizzy pop and texting like a maniac to get a ticket then!

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  • 7.
  • At 01:51 AM on 23 May 2006,
  • Mohd Yamin wrote:

I asked one of the sites selling tickets online at expensive prices. They claim they are getting their tickets from the sponsors.

If that is the case, FIFA is indirectly responsible for feeding the touts.

I managed to get one ticket for a match. I paid a bomb for hospitality tickets and I didn't even get Category 1 seats. Instead I got Category 2 seats. This for 1 ticket that is costing me 3 months' pay.

I am extremely disappointed.

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  • 8.
  • At 03:09 AM on 23 May 2006,
  • Bjorn wrote:

I think the fact that you had to enter the ballot to get tickets before you even knew if your team had qualified, or where they would be playing, was a major disincentive.

I have family in the north west of Germany, only 15 minutes from the Gelsenkirchen and Dortmund stadia, however, at the time of the ticket ballot, I wasn't sure that Australia would qualify, and if they did, they may have been drawn to play in Berlin, 8 hours away. Had the organising committee held off, and made the main ballot when the schedule was known, I would have been able to make informed decisions on which games I wanted to see where.

I agree that the number of tickets in competitions is ridiculous, but that's the price of a commercial sporting event. Hopefully the true fans are going to win these tickets, due to their superior abilities to argue passionately in 25 words or less (fewer).

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  • 9.
  • At 04:46 AM on 23 May 2006,
  • Richard Harrison wrote:

The reason that the FSF and others always moan about the size of a sponsors allocation is because these are the tickets that normally end up on the black market at 50 times face value.

I was at the CL final last week and was chatting to an american barca fan who got his ticket that way after paying a tout 1,200 euros. Arsenal and Barca both received 21,000 tickets in a 80,000 stadium, each club has over 100,000 members. No wonder the touts made so much money.

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  • 10.
  • At 10:36 AM on 23 May 2006,
  • Anonymous wrote:

I've tried so hard to get tickets, i could have got so many, yet my credit card limit had been reached, yet i wasnt told this was the problem till all the tickets had gone,, 2-3 weeks ago, tickets for most matches were for sale.

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  • 11.
  • At 10:45 AM on 23 May 2006,
  • Scott D wrote:

I have been attempting to get tickets for numerous games for over a year. I eventually managed to obtain three tickets for Portugal v Angola in Koln.

I was amazed how difficult this was as I deliberatley avoided Brazil, Holland, Argentina, England and Germany in a bid to guarantee seeing some action. The organising committee released tickets over so many different phases it was difficult to keep track of them. Furthermore, they then introduced the 'conditional ticket programme' that makes fans pay for tickets before they have been issued them. Of course fans would be entitled to a refund if tickets were not available, but this money must have been sitting in the OC's account for months - not to mention the admin fees that they charged.

Fortunatley, my fear of turning up, unable to get tickets, and finding the stadium half empty will not be realised. However, I fear others may not be so lucky.

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  • 12.
  • At 02:15 PM on 23 May 2006,
  • Neil F wrote:

Even the general ballot is a farce. The first wave of tickets are sold before the draw has been made, hence thousands of fans ending up with tickets for games they don't want to watch.
Also England (with arguably) the larest support of 100,000!!! are placed in three of the smaller stadiums!

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I think it is scandulous that Arsenal and Barcelona were given 42,000 tickets between them in a stadium that can hold 80,000. The same is happening with the World Cup. I am in the process of writing a dissertation proposal on football and I am sad to say that football has sold its soul to sponsors and advertisers.

The Champions League final is for fans. Arsenal will have 55,000-60,000 supporters in the Emirates stadium next season. Arsenal could so easily have taken a ticket allocation of 40,000 if they had the opportunity.

I want to see real fans watching important matches. If my team Newcastle reach the FA Cup Final next year, I want to be there. I do not want to have someone from McDonalds sitting were I would be sitting. It is outrageous.

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  • 14.
  • At 03:25 PM on 23 May 2006,
  • Blake wrote:

Agree in principle as I originally tried to get tickets when they were first released and got nowhere.

However, I can't complain too much as I won a sponsor's competition and am taking my dad to watch England v Trinidad & Tobago. Can assure you we're both huge England (& Spurs) fans and we're looking forward to a once-in-a-lifetime moment.

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  • 15.
  • At 04:34 PM on 23 May 2006,
  • Darren wrote:

I received tickets through FIFA's global ballot (1st Phase). It's true to say that when I applied for my tickets I did not know if England would qualify or where they would be playing. However, by applying for a FIFA TST ticket (Team Specific Ticket) I was able to enter the ballot for tickets for England matches (or whatever nation I preferred) only. If England had failed to qualify then my money would have been refunded. Fortunately, we qualified and I have tickets for all 3 England group games and the Round of 16 game too.

A fair degree of forward planning and understanding of the FIFA ticketing regulations were needed but the info was all there on the internet. There was no guarantee of a succeeding in the ballot but to me, having participated in it, it seems a reasonably fair system to allocate tickets to an international market.

And before anybody asks, yes, I am a massive football fan, a 10 year season ticket holder and secretary of a semi-professional English club.

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  • 16.
  • At 06:40 AM on 24 May 2006,
  • Chris wrote:

As an English ex-pat living in Germany I have been relishing the prospect of being able to see the World Cup in my own back yard since the decision was made to hold it here in Germany several years ago. However, like so many others I haven't been able to get hold of England tickets for love nor money. The TST tickets are a good idea if you have the financial means and opportunity to take three weeks off work in one go - however not realistically possible for the majority of fans. I'm currently in the waiting list (still, after 6 weeks) for conditional tickets for a couple of games, being able to travel to one of the stadia with just a few days notice. This option is one that many England fans may have overlooked - having made the journey many times myself, I know that the journey from south England to Köln, for example only takes about seven hours by car.
One thing that really irks me (as well as the majority of Germans) is why restrict the means of buying tickets from MasterCard? I shudder to think how much money they are making, just by people applying for the card for the purpose of the World Cup. The recently set up ombudsman has yet to come up with an answer....

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  • 17.
  • At 09:31 PM on 10 Jun 2006,
  • tkt8yp7@lycos.com wrote:

ringtones free

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  • 18.
  • At 02:40 PM on 12 Jun 2006,
  • Rachel - Jai Langan wrote:

Does anyone have any idea how many tickets England have been allocated for the final??

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