Fans unite to threaten boycott of Wembley

Ahead of the first FA Cup Final at the new Wembley Stadium later this month, Chelsea and Manchester United supporters are uniting in protest at the way they feel they are being fleeced by those in charge of the game they love.

The ticket allocations and pricing, as well as the pricing for refreshments within the Wembley complex “shows the total lack of regard and understanding by the authorities” of the two clubs’ fan base, according to a campaign, launched this week, to boycott the various drinks, food and souvenir stands at the new Wembley.

Michael Owen, a Manchester United season ticket-holder with two young sons, has set up a petition on the 10 Downing Street website to complain about the allocation of Cup final tickets. Although Wembley now has a capacity of 90,000, only 50,000 tickets have been allocated to the two clubs in the May 19 showpiece, with the rest being distributed by the FA or via the Club Wembley corporate hospitality scheme.

Adult and senior citizen tickets for the Cup Final are priced at £95, £80, £60 and £35, with some tickets for under-16s on offer at half-price.

Owen says, “Please feel free to sign it and to publicise it on your website or in any other way – the more the merrier! Let’s hope we at least cause some embarrassment in the right quarters and here’s to a great match at least on Cup Final day!”

P Ball, a Chelsea season ticket-holder, said, “I am disgusted at the FA’s price structure for the match…”

Blues supporter David F said, “I will be among many thousands of ‘ordinary’ season ticket-holders scrambling for a ticket. What really grates is I’ve been to every home game in all cups this season, but that doesn’t count for anything when it comes to the crunch. Typical…”

Steven G said, “Living in Harrow, which is only a stone’s throw from Wembley, we were all disgusted by the prices set out on tickets – it just isn’t on! We will not spend a single penny at Wembley unless they try to charge 20p to go to the toilet (we can’t rule that one out). I really hope the majority will do the same.”

Neil Thomas, a United fan from Manchester, said, “Let’s hope that enough people join this campaign and make a dent in the FA’s and Wembley’s profits. All it takes is for grassroots supporters to stick two fingers up by publicly and actively supporting this – good luck with your campaign.”