Football fans angry as UEFA cancels European Championship tickets
Football fans hoping to attend the next European Championship have reacted with anger and confusion after learning that UEFA canceled their tickets in a poll as stadiums cut capacity due to the pandemic.
UEFA has started sending emails to fans informing them that their tickets have been canceled “in accordance with the voting process for matches where the number of tickets sold has exceeded the new seating capacity allowed”.
Fans, many of whom have held tickets since 2019, have taken to social media to note that UEFA is canceling their tickets while continuing to sell expensive hospitality packages.
Host stadiums have been forced to reduce their capacity due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with attendance expected to vary between 25% and 50%.
Budapest is expected to be at full capacity, while Wembley will be reduced to 25%, before an expected increase to 50% if national Covid-19 restrictions are relaxed as planned on June 21.
One fan, Tom from Cambridgeshire, told the PA news agency: ‘Our family have been given tickets to England since 2019 and to see them taken away from us at this late stage is really frustrating.
“We have not received any specific details on how a voting process for tickets already awarded works, communication with fans has been shocking.”
An email from UEFA reads: “Dear football fan, We are sorry to inform you that your tickets for UEFA Euro 2020 have been canceled in accordance with the voting process for matches where the number of tickets sold has exceeded the new authorized seating capacities.
“For tickets purchased through the participating national association sales program, the rules of the respective fan clubs have been applied.
“Please check the attached credit note which describes the details of your refund. “
Others have taken to Twitter to complain that they, too, canceled their tickets for later games when the crowd size was yet to be determined.
George Hull, a travel insurance claims assessor from Hanham to Bristol, said his tickets to a semi-final at Wembley had been canceled.
He said: “It was a bit boring because they haven’t given final confirmation on how many players they will have for the semi-final and the final.
“Looking now with what’s going on with the Indian variant, I can imagine it will be on the lower end of what they can have.
“But still, even the government said, until recently, that it did not give a final number, that it only guaranteed a minimum number of seats that would be available.”
“You can still buy hospitality tickets for these games, which is something that puts a little salt in the wound.
“I really expected to lose these tickets… because it’s the fans first, they’ll be the first to get canceled because these are the ones people pay the least for.”
He added: “I think they (UEFA) are for the fans to some extent, but when the financial situation kicks in they tend to look away which is modern football in itself. “
Scott Sheppard, 32, a coach driver from Birmingham, had been awarded two single tickets, one for what turned out to be the England-Scotland game, and one for one of the semi-finals.
He said: “I literally got an email yesterday saying they canceled both tickets, even though my semi-final ticket isn’t until July.
“So I don’t know the ins and outs, but as far as I’m concerned, the July restrictions could be lifted further.
“We don’t even know what the capacity will be for Wembley in July, so I don’t understand why those tickets were also canceled.
“I’m pissed off, gutted, because I read on Twitter that they were selling company tickets for over 1,000 euros.
“From what I’ve read on Twitter and online it looks like they’ve canceled all the cheap tickets because if they can only have 20,000 fans they want 20,000 expensive tickets to earn more. money, I guess, and standard fans who pay for regular tickets are the losers.
Mr Sheppard said UEFA had handled the situation “terribly”.
“I just feel like they just general canceled all the cheaper regular tickets and they’re just going to sell them to the companies.
“If they can get 1,500 euros for a ticket, they’ll sell 20,000, right, instead of the 200 tickets I’m buying?”
“I still hope they will realize a mistake and remove it, but it doesn’t look like it.
“It’s a long time coming after the year everyone has had.
“It was one of the only things to hope for and it’s gone now.”