Tottenham vs Liverpool in the Champions League final
We are now just five days away from the Champions League final.
Tottenham Hotspur versus Liverpool in the Wanda Metropolitano is the hottest ticket in town and promises to be a match remembered for decades.
Both Tottenham and Liverpool reached the final thanks to epic comeback wins over Ajax and Barcelona, respectively.
And, there is much excitement across the globe for this Champions League final in Madrid.
Tottenham are aiming for their first Champions League (European Cup) trophy. Meanwhile, Liverpool are playing for their sixth.
Marca’s striking front page on Monday
Most media outlets in England and across the world are looking forward to what should be a cracking match between the two Premier League teams.
Spanish newspaper Marca, based in Madrid, though, have put together a very striking front page on Monday.
The main title of the front page is “FEAR” (“Miedo”) and details how bars in the fan zones are expected to close early on Saturday, due to worries over English “hooligans”.
20,000 Spurs & Liverpool fans expected in Madrid, with no tickets
Much has already been made of the scandalous ticketing shortage for fans of both Tottenham and Liverpool to get into the Champions League final.
Both clubs were handed just over 16,000 tickets, with over half the capacity of the Wanda Metropolitano set to be filled by corporate and sponsor tickets.
This has not stopped fans of both sides travelling to Madrid this Saturday, though, with 20,000 ticket-less supporters expected to be in the Spanish capital.
Marca point out on their front page and on their website that this is going to put a great strain on the hospitality services provided in Madrid.
UEFA close fan zones at 6pm
The crux of the issue for bar owners in Madrid is that the two fan zones, for Spurs and Liverpool supporters, close at 6pm.
This is fine for those with tickets, as they can head to the match and enjoy the final. But, what about the 20,000 fans without entry into the Wanda Metropolitano?
Bar owners are cited in Marca’s report considering closing down their establishments due to the fear of “hooliganism”.
The bar owners also confirm that they have ordered more beer for the English fans in Madrid, with so many expected on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Marca go on to describe the crazy hotel prices that have engulfed the city for the Champions League final.
But note: “Despite the crazy prices, the occupation is around 90%. Only the fear of hooligans worries Madrid.”
Marca fail to blame UEFA!
The biggest surprise regarding this Marca front page is that they fail to lay any blame at the doors of UEFA – European football’s governing body.
Why are the two fan zones shutting down at 6pm? Where are the ticketless fans supposed to watch the Champions League final?
Surely UEFA should have considered putting on screens in these fan zones for those fans without tickets!
This would ensure a much quieter night for the bars and the crowds could have been controlled much more easily.
This remains a possibility with five days to go, and you wonder if Marca’s warnings today will even be heard by UEFA?