German match-rigging overshadows World Cup

31st January 2005, Comments 0 comments

31 January 2005 , HAMBURG - World Cup 2006 tickets go on sale on Tuesday, overshadowed by a match-rigging scandal in the host country Germany. The affair involving at least one referee and possibly other match officials as well as lower league players has damaged the once impeccable reputation of German football. But all parties involved hope that the dark clouds will be gone when the German team kicks off the World Cup on June 9, 2006, in Munich. "I believe the World Cup will be a success. We will not hav

31 January 2005

HAMBURG - World Cup 2006 tickets go on sale on Tuesday, overshadowed by a match-rigging scandal in the host country Germany.

The affair involving at least one referee and possibly other match officials as well as lower league players has damaged the once impeccable reputation of German football.

But all parties involved hope that the dark clouds will be gone when the German team kicks off the World Cup on June 9, 2006, in Munich.

"I believe the World Cup will be a success. We will not have this ugly incident deter us," said interior minister Otto Schily in a talk show on ARD television on Sunday night.

In the same broadcast former national team coach Rudi Voeller also expressed his optimism that "the (negative) international reactions will die down".

The referee scandal has, though, taken attention away from the fact that not every fan will be satisfied in the ticket sales because sponsors, VIPs and the football community in Germany and abroad have to be served as well.

Little more than a third of the 2.93 million tickets available for the 64 matches in 12 stadiums will actually be available to fans by public sale.

The application process for a first contingent of 812,000 tickets on www.fifaworldcup.com starts at 0000 local time on Tuesday 1 February and runs until 0000 on 31 March.

Fans can order a maximum four tickets per match for seven World Cup games in the price categories 1-3, but only two in the cheapest category 4 (EUR 35). The most expensive ticket for the 9 July 2006, final in Berlin costs EUR 600.

All applications must be made on the official form. Tickets are not distributed on a first come first serve basis but by lot on 15 April as the ruling body FIFA and the German organisers expect some 30 million applications worldwide.

German organisers on Sunday urged fans to pay full attention to the sale proceedings to not further undermine their chances.

"We can only recommend to each fan to take a careful look at the regulations to avoid mistakes," organising committee vice-president Horst R. Schmidt said in a press release.

At least another 300,000 will later become available on the free market until 15 January  2006.

Of the other tickets, 347,000 are for the hospitality programme, 468,000 for the 31 qualified teams apart from Germany, 191,000 for the international football family, 389,000 for the German football family and 550,000 for FIFA and German World Cup sponsors.

The average fan can, however, hope to get hold of these tickets as well, as each team playing gets a 4 per cent share per match. In addition, sponsors have indicated that around two thirds of their tickets will go to fans as well via lotteries.

Coca-Cola, for instance, one of 15 FIFA sponsors who have paid 40 million euros for their exclusive World Cup rights, plan to distribute 8,000 of their tickets among the fans.

"We want to allow the fans to witness the World Cup from very close," said Coca-Cola World Cup manager Peter Rettig.

DPA

Subject: German news

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