The outcome of ballot submissions for the Champions League final were published on Thursday, with the success rate highlighting the changes that must be made by UEFA.
Picture this, your team makes it to the final of the greatest club competition and you know tens of thousands have been to their home stadium and travelled Europe following their team.
They reach the pinnacle, only for a measly ticket allocation of 26 percent of the host stadium to be granted to each of the finalists – making up only 52 percent of the entire ground.
Well, that’s the reality for both Liverpool and Real Madrid supporters in Paris for the Champions League final on May 28.
Of the 75,000 tickets available, each club received just 19,618. Let that sink in for a moment.
It’s nothing new, UEFA love to stand proudly and say they have the fan interest at heart, take the Super League, for example, only to have their fingers crossed behind their back.
Commercial partners, competition winners and those with cash to splash will be granted access but tens of thousands of match-going fans will have to find alternative options or be forced to pay well over the odds for tickets.
Liverpool announced on Thursday that 35,532 qualifying supporters entered the ballot for this year’s final and the allocation ensured only 29.5 percent were successful.
It’s a disheartening figure that lays bare the regard in which fans are held by UEFA, those pandemic tributes are long in the past.
The Stade de France has a capacity of 75,000 and yet Liverpool and Real Madrid will share in just 39,236 of those tickets for their fans, a figure that had Jurgen Klopp reeling.
“You see the ticket prices and all this kind of stuff, the amount of tickets you get,” Klopp said to reporters last week.
“Is it right that we get only 20,000, they get only 20,000, 75,000 in [the stadium]?
“That makes 35,000 what? Where are these tickets?”
Change is needed to ensure the game remains with those that provide the heartbeat, but UEFA have shown they are headed in the wrong direction entirely with some of their proposals.
Take the “week of football,” for example, that would see the Champions League semi-finals and finals played in one location across a handful of days – that simply shouts, who needs the average match-going fan?
It isn’t acceptable now, nor has it been for years on end to receive a measly 26 percent of the stadium’s capacity for a final – and this is just the Champions League, the same issue extends to the Europa League and, no doubt, the Europa Conference League.
UEFA, enough is enough.
And successful or not in the ballot, Liverpool fans were united in their view on the matter:
Absolute killer that ballot. I know they said at the start of the season credits don’t count but such a huge blow when you’ve been away in your own name this season a good few times.
Well done to everyone who got one though ?
— Lizzi Doyle (@lizzidoyle) May 12, 2022
Just a 29.5% chance of success…and this is before Anfield gets to a 61,000 capacity, so potentially more Reds qualifying for finals than the 35,532 who qualified this time. If unsuccessful you get first chance to buy tickets tomorrow for the M&S Bank arena showing #LFC https://t.co/9tnpScY9RL
— Chris Mac (@chrismackop) May 12, 2022
29.5% success for a ballot when many of the entrants have travelled home and away is a farce if we’re honest
— J. (@jaytothelo) May 12, 2022
I’m not gonna start crying about other fans getting tickets cos I’ve got lucky in 3 ballots this season, but uefa’s allocation of under 20000 in an 80000 seater stadium is a fucking joke. I’m 5000 on the waiting list. A normal allocation an i would’ve flew in
— Michael (@MichaelT1994) May 12, 2022
I’m so sorry to everyone who never got one. UEFA need fucking and we should make that known in Paris, 19000 tickets for a ground that size is a fucking scandal.
— Paul Senior? (@PaulSenior1) May 12, 2022
Shouldn't complain about only being successful in three out of four ballots.
— Jonathan Hall (@JonathanHall_71) May 12, 2022
Wrong on so many levels. Makes a mockery of fans who pay so much to be eligible for the ballot. UEFA are getting worse https://t.co/nUJnW2KoD3
— Karl Green (@KarlGreen_) May 12, 2022
Commiserations to those that missed out, and for those of you that were successful, congratulations, enjoy and bring us back No. 7!