Saturday 25 November 2017

Watch: Tout selling Ireland Euro 2016 ticket for €500 has classless reaction when confronted

Cathal Fagan (centre) with Declan Fagan left and sister Orla (right)
Cathal Fagan (centre) with Declan Fagan left and sister Orla (right)
Cathal McMahon

Cathal McMahon

This is the moment a tout attempting to flog tickets for €500 to desperate Irish fans had a classless reaction when approached in Lyon.

The young man was approaching supporters outside the Fanzone in the city this afternoon carrying a sign.

He was offering passes for the vastly inflated price of €500 – the most expensive tickets for tomorrow's game between Ireland and France are €145.

He refused to answer when we asked him his name, instead he attempted to block our filming. He waved, as if to say goodbye, before sticking up his middle finger at the camera.

Up to 50,000 Irish fans are expected to descend on Lyon this weekend for the game.

However the FAI was allocated just 1,104 tickets for the massive clash in Parc Olympique Lyonnais. Ireland fans were able to purchase 3,500 tickets for the fixture earlier this year.

This means it is likely that the Green Army could number less than 5,000 amongst the 59,186 supporters who will pack into on Sunday.

Throughout the day the Green army have been walking around France's second city with homemade signs looking for spare tickets for the game.

Siblings Declan (30), Orla (27) and Cathal Fagan (28) were outside the Fanzone with pal Paul Rocks (28). The Armagh group were carrying a box with “We need tickets”, written on it.

Cathal said: “We just decided to get a marker, write it up, and see who comes.”

Paul added: “It's been very expensive to get a ticket. In Lille there was no problem there was guys selling tickets for €50.

“Here they are selling them for extortionate prices. It is going to be hard to get them.”

Paul explained that they have been approached by touts. “We had one boy selling tickets for €500 and the other was asking €300.”

As they were speaking to, another man approached the group.

The man, who refused to give his name, said he was sent to the Fanzone by a “friend” to sell tickets.

“My friend send me here to sell the tickets. He is asking €500 for category 1 tickets.”

He claimed that they were “legitimate” passes.

When asked why he wouldn't sell them for face value, the man responded: “They are not mine. I paid for mine and they are not mine.

“My friend couldn't come, I live next to the Fan zone so he ask me.”

He continued: “I am also a football fan so if someone wants to enter the game, this is the amount.”

Yesterday it emerged that online touts are charging over €6,100 for four tickets for the game.

Another person was looking to sell two category 4 tickets, which have a face value of €25, for €2,041 (including taxes and charges). This is 40 times the face value.

Dublin North TD Noel Rock (FG), who has travelled to Ireland's three group games against Sweden, Belgium and Italy, has slammed the practice.

“It's a complete joke. There should be an absolute clampdown on secondary ticket selling for above face value.

“It's shameless gouging of real fans, plain and simple.”

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