May 16, 2021

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UEFA criticized for awarding Europa League final tickets

UEFA has announced the allocation of tickets for the Europa League final, scheduled for May 26.

The match will take place at Stadion Miejski in Gdansk, Poland. It was originally planned to host the 2019/20 Europa League final, but the game was moved to Cologne. The field accommodates more than 41,000 spectators.

The Stadion Miejski used during Euro 2012

However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the match will have to be played in front of limited capacity to limit movement and close contact between people.

UEFA announced that up to 9,500 supporters would be allowed to attend the match, with prices ranging from € 40 to € 130. All candidates will be entered on a ballot and informed on May 14 if they have received a ticket.

However, the controversy comes with the allocation of tickets. The European football governing body has confirmed that each participating club will receive 2,000 tickets, with another 2,000 tickets going on general sale. That leaves 3,500 tickets, which will go to the sponsors.

This is not the first time that UEFA has come under fire for awarding tickets to the Grand Finals. The 2018/19 final between Arsenal and Chelsea has also been the subject of similar criticism.

Hosted in Baku, Azerbaijan, the two teams received only 6,000 tickets each, despite a capacity of 64,000. Just under half of the tickets went to sponsors, with the remainder being made available on general sale.

The Europa League final between Arsenal and Chelsea, 2019

Many have criticized UEFA for its hypocrisy in the wake of the European Super League (ESL) drama. The organization was firmly against ESL and claimed it would be a betrayal of the fans.

Meanwhile, the allocation of their tickets clearly shows that their priority goes to the sponsors over the supporters.

At the moment, it is very likely that Manchester United will be one of the teams in the final, having won their first leg against Roma 6-2. Villarreal and Arsenal will fight for the other place, with the former leading 2-1 on aggregate heading into the second leg.

Also read: Can Roma and Villarreal stop Man Utd and Arsenal from playing in Europa League final?