No empty seats at SWC - FIFA

2010-04-27 14:40

Dubai - There will not be any empty seats at this year's Soccer World Cup in South Africa after a recent surge in ticket sales helped sell out about 40 matches, FIFA said on Tuesday.

"There will not be any empty seats in the stadiums. That was a commitment we made from day one," FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke siad. "I am now much more optimistic than three weeks ago."

World soccer's ruling body has admitted its largely internet-based system of ticket sales for the tournament starting on June 11 may have proved less than efficient.

Over-the-counter sales in South Africa began some 10 days ago, igniting real World Cup fever in the country for the first time, and there was chaos as thousands of fans rushed to buy and the computer system crashed.

"People are waking up very late but we are very happy with the result and all of the people involved are very confident," Valcke said, speaking on the sidelines of an international sports conference in the United Arab Emirates.

He said some 130 000 tickets were still unsold in the fifth and final stage of the process but about 40 of the 64 matches were now sold out.

"With about 45 days before the World Cup, we have more or less 40 matches sold out already, up from 29 only a short time ago," he said.

FIFA initially made tickets available only on the internet and was criticised for misunderstanding South African culture where the poor black fans who are soccer's biggest supporters do not have access to computers or bank accounts.

Sales to some European countries, including Germany, have also been sluggish compared to past World Cups, due to high travel costs and security concerns among ordinary fans.

More In This Category

Thierry Henry would never consider playing for France again even if new coach and former teammate Laurent Blanc asked him to.
An emotional Diego Maradona says he was betrayed as Argentina coach by national team director Carlos Bilardo.
Carlos Alberto Parreira has left South Africa at the end of his contract with Bafana Bafana, headed for his home in Rio de Janeiro.
Ghana defender John Mensah has refuted claims of a spat with the Ghana Football Association over unpaid Soccer World Cup bonuses.
Comments
Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
34 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk