NYON, Switzerland (AP)Roma and Feyenoord have each been allocated 4,000 tickets for their fans at the Europa Conference League final in Albania with three quarters of the tickets given free, UEFA said on Tuesday.
The clubs’ combined allocation is less than the 8,500 tickets – priced from 25 euros ($26) to 125 euros ($132) – UEFA put on sale on Tuesday through its website to fans worldwide.
The stadium capacity is just 20,000 in the National Arena (Arena Kombetare) in Tirana for the inaugural final of the third-tier European club competition on May 25.
Feyenoordsaid this weekit was disappointed with the limited availability and cautioned its fans against buying tickets from unofficial sellers.
UEFA picked Tirana as host in December 2020, one year after the new stadium officially opened and before any team qualified to enter the debut competition.
UEFA previously promised some free tickets to cup finals this season ”to reward the lifeblood of the game for their loyal support during the pandemic.”
The free tickets allocation for the Europa Conference League final is 6,000 with each club choosing how to distribute its quota.
The remaining 3,500 tickets go to local organizers, soccer officials, and UEFA’s sponsors and broadcasters.
Albania Football Association official Kejdi Tomorri said on Tuesday they are expecting 20,000 Dutch fans, the majority of whom will remain outside the stadium.
Roma’s two previous European finals saw it play in its own Stadio Olimpico that now seats 70,000. Roma lost the 1984 European Cup final to Liverpool and was beaten by Inter Milan in the two-leg UEFA Cup final in 1991.
Feyenoord also hosted its last European final, winning the single-leg 2002 UEFA Cup final against Borussia Dortmund watched by more than 45,000 in Rotterdam.
The final is a higher profile match than was envisaged by many in 2018 when UEFA decided to create the Europa Conference League. Its aim was to give more opportunities for clubs in lower-ranked countries to stay involved in European competitions beyond December.
Clubs from Azerbaijan and Israel – Qarabag and Maccabi Tel-Aviv – reached the knockout playoffs in February, and Norway’s Bodo/Glimt was eliminated in the quarterfinals in April by Roma.
Later Tuesday, UEFA picked a venue for the 2023 final that will go to an even smaller stadium – the Eden Arena in Czech Republic capital Prague. Its capacity will be fewer than 20,000 when it is equipped for a UEFA final.
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