Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Fans to Stage Wembley Protest

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Fans to Stage Wembley Protest

Article excerpt

CHELSEA and Manchester United fans are organising a mass boycott of merchandise and catering facilities at this month's FA Cup Final as a protest against the high prices and allocation of tickets at Wembley Stadium.

Supporters from both clubs are working together, having been angered by the Football Association's decision to award only 25,000 tickets to each club, even though Chelsea's and United's average attendance is much higher than that.

The prices of the tickets have also come under fire for what is the first FA Cup Final to be held at Wembley, which now has a 90,000 capacity, since it was rebuilt. The cheapest seats cost [pounds sterling]35, which is an increase of [pounds sterling]10 from last year's final at Cardiff 's Millennium Stadium and there are only 4,000 of those available.

Most people are having to spend [pounds sterling]60, [pounds sterling]80 or [pounds sterling]95 for a seat and that is before they pay for any food or merchandise. Programmes are going to cost [pounds sterling]10, [pounds sterling]1 of which is going to charity, while the cost ofthe food is still under review.

But Chelsea and United fans have begun a campaign instructing their supporters to snub everything on sale at Wembley on 19 May in a bid to restrict the FA's revenue from the day. A statement on Chelsea fans' website blueandwhitearmy.net, who have been working in conjunction with the Independent Manchester United Supporters' Association, said: "We are asking both sets of supporters to display a show of unity to register their disgust at the arrangements the FA have made for the Cup Final.

"The pricing structure for tickets set by the FA again shows their disregard for supporters." AWembley spokesman said: "The FA have been open and transparent about the reasons behind the ticket allocation. As regards to the catering, it's up to the fans whether they want to use any of the 900 outlets available in the stadium."

CHELSEA and Manchester United fans are organising a mass boycott of merchandise and catering facilities at this month's FA Cup Final as a protest against the high prices and allocation of tickets at Wembley Stadium. …

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