Acropolis Now! Liverpool Fans Plan Date with History; Thousands of Supporters Plot Route for Athens Final
Byline: BY VICKY ANDERSON Daily Post Staff
ON ONE hand, there is the promise of football, beer and kebabs, just like at home.
On the other, there is the birthplace of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.
Ancient civilisation meets with a very modern hedonism in the city of Athens, where tens of thousands of Liverpool fans will head to for the May 23 Champions League final.
However, fears of a major public order headache for the Greek authorities were averted last night when Liverpool's main rivals, Manchester United, crashed out of the Champions League, after they were beaten 3-0 by AC Milan (5-3 on aggregate).
The stage is now set for a repeat of the 2005 Champions League final between AC Milan and Liverpool - and everyone knows how that finished.
Les Lawson, secretary of the Merseyside branch of the Official Liverpool Supporters Club, said he was "absolutely delighted".
He added: "It means it will be easier to get tickets as AC Milan didn't take up their full allocation last time, whereas Man Utd, like Liverpool, have a massive following.
"Also, both the English clubs have a fierce rivalry and a lot of people, who might have had second thoughts about going from a security point of view, can now go.
"There were no incidents of any note between Liverpool and Milan supporters when the two teams met in Istanbul.
"It's always a better atmosphere and a better occasion when it's a foreign side. It just emphasises what a fantastic job Rafa Benitez has done as Liverpool manager that he is taking us into our second Champions League final."
Liverpool fans are now busy planning their route to Athens for the final in less than three weeks.
The price of flights skyrocketed following Liverpool's qualification, though hotel rooms still appeared to be available.
Return journeys from Manchester to Athens that were already costing more than pounds 450 before Liverpool's win were costing an average of pounds 940 yesterday.
Liverpool John Lennon airport is currently arranging special charter flights to make it easier for fans to reach the game.
It is thought as many as 21,000 seats in the stadium will be made available to LFC fans.
Tickets went on sale at Liverpool's official liverpoolfc.tv website at 8.30am this morning.
However, a number of people were claiming to be selling tickets on internet auction sites last night. Although somewhat dubious, one seller claimed to have bids totalling pounds 3,229.
Liverpool end tickets on one official event website were going for pounds 2,290.
Sports travel firms will run a variety of chartered packages including day trips, two-day trips and VIP packages. …