France warned in advance of fake UEFA Champions League tickets

Pointing out the lack of response ahead of large sports events such as the Olympics

Real Madrid players cheer after winning the UEFA Champions League final

[AFP=연합뉴스 자료사진. 재판매 및 DB 금지]

(Paris = Yonhap News) Correspondent Hyeon Hye-ran = Ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup and the 2024 Summer Olympics, doubts are rising as to whether France has the capacity to handle large-scale sporting events.

This is because the noise is growing day by day over the commotion caused by the UEFA Champions League final held at the ‘Stade de France’ in Saint-Denis outside Paris.

The match between Real Madrid (Spain) and Liverpool (England), a famous European football club, was delayed for more than 30 minutes, and some fans could not enter in time and missed the first half of the match.

French authorities said that the setback was caused by the rise of fake tickets among British fans, but reports came out on the 31st (local time) that the police were aware of the existence of fake tickets.

An intelligence agency document confirmed by the AFP news agency said that 50,000 British football fans would go to Paris without a ticket, with some attempting to enter the stadium with fake tickets.

The document prepared by the intelligence service on the 25th of last month and distributed to the police even introduced a specific method of sneaking into the stadium wearing the clothes of UEFA staff, environmental cleaners, and medical staff.

The document also ordered the highest level of vigilance, stating that “hundreds of British fans will forcefully open the ticket gates and doors to enter the stadium”.

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin held a press conference after an emergency meeting the previous day to find out the cause of the crisis in Liverpool fans who used fake tickets.

At the same time, unlike Real Madrid, which distributed e-tickets, Liverpool criticized the club for giving them paper tickets and giving them a chance to cheat with fake tickets.

France’s Sports Minister Amelie Udea Castella criticized Liverpool fans’ behavior and condemned the club for not managing the fans who had moved to Paris.

Liverpool FC CEO Hogan has called for a thorough investigation to ensure that “a shameful thing” does not happen again, arguing that French authorities are “evading responsibility”.

Liverpool chairman Tom Werner wrote a letter to Udea Castella, calling it “irresponsible, unprofessional and utterly rude” and demanding an apology.

The French Ministry of Interior and Sports estimated that between 30,000 and 40,000 Liverpool fans came to the stadium without tickets to the finals or with fake tickets.

UEFA and the French Football Federation (FFF) estimate that 2,800 fake tickets were used in the final.

About 22,000 tickets were officially allocated to Real Madrid and Liverpool, respectively, and French authorities have launched an investigation into the distribution of fake tickets.

Ahead of Real Madrid’s 1-0 victory in the final, some Liverpool fans clashed with police as they tried to enter the stadium without tickets.

In the process of stopping this, the French police sprayed tear gas and pepper spray at the public, and it was pointed out that it was an overreaction, including children.

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