The luxury of our football

Eight years ago I had the magnificent opportunity to fulfill a dream: to go to a Champions League final. The setting couldn't have been b

Eight years ago I had the magnificent opportunity to fulfill a dream: to go to a final. The setting couldn’t have been better on a personal level, as a fan, witnessing their comeback against Atlético to lift the Décima has been one of the best sporting moments of my life.

The beautiful capital city of Buenos Aires was an incredible variable that added to the experience and while I joined the tide of people from Madrid through the streets of Lisbon, once I arrived at the Luz stadium I began to notice a sad reality. Going with a guest ticket from a brand, access was different, but the hatred in the eyes and the words of hundreds of Spanish fans who saw us pass by disconcerted me and of course caused me great sadness.

The controversy is not new. The ticket distribution method is clearly unfair to the fans, but financially justified for . It happens in the Super Bowl and it happens in the final of each World Cup, the space in the stands for passion is reduced and the hospitality areas to receive men in suits and ladies in heels grow.

Assuming that they are fans of the main teams is unrealistic, but to think that they know the sport and the magnitude of the match is not unreasonable either. Jürgen Klopp, who will play his fourth Champions League final, has noticed it, and claimed to understand “100 thousand percent” the feeling of his fans who complain about the high cost of tickets that end up in any case. resale. “They (UEFA) are not the saints of football,” he assured.

For the Europa League final, only half of the 40,000 tickets were assigned to the corresponding clubs of Frankfurt and Rangers. Although for the Champions League final, UEFA distributed 20,000 tickets to each team, which represent 53% of the capacity at the Stade de France, the rest of the 35,000 tickets requested go to the corporate ones. “It is part of the contractual obligation that we have,” explained Alexander Ceferin, the head of the organization, defending the 100 or more million euros that sponsors pay each season.

These profits are at least shared among the European clubs. Real Madrid will receive €125m this year and Liverpool a little less.

As much as UEFA has frozen the cheapest tickets at 70 euros until 2024, the result in the stands can only be felt on May 28.

Twitter: @jiimejime