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FAI to review ticket situation following empty seats at sold-out WNT international

There were clusters of empty seats visible at last night’s game, to the frustration of fans who couldn’t purchase a ticket.

A view of the stands at last night's game at Tallaght Stadium.
A view of the stands at last night's game at Tallaght Stadium.
Image: Tom Maher/INPHO

THE FAI WILL review the ticket situation around women’s international matches after last night’s historic World Cup qualifier win against Finland fell short of a capacity crowd. 

Tickets on general sale sold out in 30 minutes when they were made available in July, but while the game attracted a record crowd of 6,952, it was short of Tallaght’s 8,000 capacity. 

The empty seats were a result of ticket-holders not turning up on the day, a fact which has disappointed the FAI, who could have otherwise redistributed the tickets to fans who could attend. The Association expect that 5-10% of tickets holders won’t attend a game, be it a men’s or women’s international, though the number of empty seats at last night’s game exceeded that threshold. 

The FAI will review the issue at the end of the window as part of their standard reviews of every international fixture.

A discussion of the price of tickets for the next qualification campaign may be part of that review. Tickets are currently priced at €10 for adults and €5 for kids, but an increase in price may incentivise ticket-holders to turn up on the day.

2,000 match tickets were set aside for 91 grassroots clubs, from whom the FAI received requests for more than 4,000 tickets.  Images of clusters of empty seats caused frustration to fans at home who wanted to buy tickets but couldn’t. 

Gavin Cooney
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Manager Vera Pauw and captain Katie McCabe led pre-game messaging on the importance of ticket-holders turning up on the day, and in a radio interview this morning, Pauw said those ticket-holders who didn’t show would be feeling “silly” after Ireland secured a World Cup play-off for the very first time by beating Finland 1-0. 

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