Less than 2,500 people will be in attendance at the Khalifa International Stadium for England's opening match against Iran, despite the Three Lions' supporters intending to support them all the way at World Cup 2022.
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England World Cup
A cruel blow has been given to England fans traveling to Qatar for the World Cup later this year: the Three Lions have discovered that their opening match against Iran will have less than 2,500 "official" supporters.
On Monday, November 21, Gareth Southgate's team kicks off their eagerly awaited campaign at the Khalifa International Stadium, and FIFA has confirmed to the FA that just 2,489 seats will be reserved for Three Lions supporters.
FIFA allocated just 8% of "available seating space" for each squad, therefore members of the England Supporters Travel Club have until Thursday to apply for the official allotment.
Of those, 1,785 were in the Category 3 seats with the lowest prices, which cost £53 apiece. In Category 2, there were another 595 spaces available for £126, and the final 100 spots were in the most expensive pricing range, at £168.
Qatar World Cup Stadiums
The FA received 4,158 seats for the encounter against the USA at Al Bayt Stadium on November 25. The same rates apply to England's next two group games. The Three Lions' fan base will then decrease to 2,339 for their last group match on Tuesday, November 29 at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium against the winners of the June play-offs, Scotland, Wales, or Ukraine.
England's first allotment for the round of 16 is 3,009 tickets, assuming they finish first in Group B and move on to a course that may involve three knockout games at Al Bayt, which can accommodate 60,000 people. 2,175 of them are available for £81 apiece, while 100 are $358 each.
Three Lions Tickets
If the Three Lions go to the quarterfinals, the FA has promised that there would be a minimum of 3,509 tickets, with prices starting at £173 for the 2,550 Category 3 seats. The Three Lions would once again have 100 category 1 seats, which were valued at £358 each. The rest tickets were $243 each.
Out of a total allotment of 4,609 spectators, 3,375 would pay £300 to see the Three Lions compete, and another 100 would spend £804 to do so. The FA will begin with 5,109 seats at the Lusail Stadium if they do make it all the way to the final, with 3,750 priced at £508 each and, once more, 100 available for an eye-watering £1,352.
That implies that it might cost a staggering £1,221 to see Southgate and company succeed at every game. However, it has been strongly advised against fans without tickets from attending the competition. Any supporters who arrive in Qatar without legitimate tickets and a FIFA ID will be sent away, according to The Sun.
Berhold Trenkel, the chief operating officer of Qatar Tourism, said: "Only supporters with match tickets will be granted visas, it has been decided. To enter Qatar, they will require official fan IDs, without which they will not be permitted to travel. The regulations are stringent and in place for a purpose."
One and a half million spectators are anticipated in Qatar, but if those projections are accurate, this would be the least populated World Cup since records began in Mexico 52 years ago.