Chelsea Supporters’ Trust launch scathing attack on UEFA and accuse them of ‘intentionally preventing’ fans from attending the Champions League final… with ticketing package blamed for storm that saw club return over 800 unsold tickets
- UEFA have been accused of ‘intentionally’ stopping Chelsea fans from attending
- The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust have taken aim at a ticketing package for the final
- Chelsea had returned 800 unsold tickets with supporters told they had sold out
- UEFA are alleged to have asked for tickets not sold as part of the package back
- The move came despite demand for supporters heading to Porto independently
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust have launched a scathing attack on UEFA and accused the governing body of ‘intentionally’ preventing fans from being able to attend this weekend’s Champions League final.
Chelsea face Manchester City in Porto in front of a limited capacity at the Estadio do Dragao, which is confirmed to be up to 16,500. The small number has unsurprisingly generated plenty of interest from both clubs.
On Wednesday, however, it was revealed that Chelsea had returned over 800 unsold tickets from their allocation of 5,800 – and their furious supporters’ group believes UEFA’s ticketing package is behind the storm.
A large number of Chelsea supporters missed out on tickets for the Champions League final
Chelsea Supporters’ Trust took aim at UEFA for ‘intentionally’ preventing fans from attending
The package included subsidised chartered flights out to Portugal for £200, and the scramble to ensure a seat for the showpiece also generated in a rush to pick up 2,800 tickets sold with independent travel.
But it is the charter deal that has led to the backlash, with UEFA savaged for apparently demanding any tickets not sold as part of the package to be returned to them.
UEFA, who are said to have been fully in control of the ticketing process, are alleged in a CST statement to have asked for the unsold tickets back ‘even if there was a demand for tickets by those supporters travelling independently’.
A withering statement from CST revealed they hold ‘no confidence’ in the governing body
The Supporters’ Trust statement read: ‘The illogical stipulation imposed by UEFA on the percentage of tickets that must be sold as part of the chartered flights package demonstrates how out of touch UEFA executives are.
‘They have intentionally prevented a significant number of loyal supporters from attending the UCL final, many of whom are travelling to Porto without a ticket.
‘The CST invites UEFA to publish a full explanation as to why this decision was made and expects that an apology is issued to Chelsea supporters who have been unjustly prohibited from watching Chelsea’s biggest game in nine years.’
As part of the emphatic message demanding a response, the group insisted that they have ‘no confidence in UEFA as Europe’s football governing body.’
Chelsea’s official website revealed this week that tickets for the final were officially sold out
They have also claimed that UEFA initially wanted ’90 per cent’ of Chelsea’s overall allocation to be offloaded as part of the chartered flights package.
With a large number of supporters having already booked to jet out independently, the situation has sparked chaos and severe disruption just two days out from the grand showpiece.
To make matters worse, supporters were told by Chelsea that they had sold out their allocation – with the allegations that have recently surfaced only stoking their frustration further.
Sportsmail had contacted the club for comment – and it is understood that 3,000 tickets were held back as part of the chartered package deal. This equates to around 50 per cent of what they were allocated.
The above emails shows a fan being told by Chelsea’s ticket office earlier this week that they had sold out for the Champions League final despite the club returning over 800 tickets
Chelsea – unlike City, who have paid for their fans’ transport and Covid testing – did not offer to cover the costs of tests for those attending the game. Instead, they were only subsiding part of supporters’ travel costs to Porto.
As reported by Sportsmail, it is believed that supporters were put off from taking up the package deal for several reasons. These include the prices of tickets, the state of the pandemic, and the rules on having to stay less than 24 hours in the city.
Supporters from the two clubs will touch down on Saturday and will have to adhere to a plan that takes them to the ground and then back to the airport.
A strict Covid bubble will be in place for them. They must also provide a negative PCR test taken 72 hours before entering the ground, as well as a negative antigen test taken two days before attending the game.
The final will be held at the Estadio do Dragao in Porto with a capacity of 16,500 allowed entry
With Chelsea contesting their biggest game in almost a decade, demand was extremely high
Istanbul was originally scheduled to play host, but the lockdown in Turkey and the UK Government adding the country to its ‘red list’ triggered UEFA to move the final away for a second straight year.
With Portugal instead named on the ‘green list’, Porto was chosen to step in.
UEFA, meanwhile, explained what supporters can expect when they land in a statement on Wednesday.
Part of the body’s message insisted that the ‘overwhelming majority’ of fans are travelling using organised charters – with this move having been ‘agreed by UEFA, the FPF and the Portuguese authorities.’
TICKET PRICES FOR THE FINAL
Category 1: £515
Category 2: £386.50
Category 3: £154.50
Category 4: £60
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