IFA lands more tickets for Northern Ireland supporters

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill
Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill

The Irish Football Association has secured 1,276 extra tickets for Northern Ireland’s Euro 2016 match against Poland on June 12 after a furore over the original allocation process.

Some fans were left fuming on Tuesday morning after a loyalty scheme apparently failed to prioritise those who had attended past games.

European football’s governing body UEFA, which is organising the championship in France, released a further 839 tickets for the match in Nice on Tuesday and on Friday the IFA said UEFA had pledged to release an additional 437.

Only supporters in the top two tiers of Northern Ireland’s fan loyalty scheme will be eligible to apply for the newly-released tickets.

“I would like to thank Northern Ireland fans for their understanding over the past few days,” IFA chief executive Patrick Nelson said.

“With 50,000 applications for 30,000 tickets (across all three of Northern Ireland’s group games) there will still inevitably be supporters who will be disappointed.

“However, the number one aim of the Irish Football Association throughout this process has been to reward those fans that have backed the team both home and away with priority access to tickets.

“I believe that this extra allocation will further help us deliver on that aim and I would like to thank UEFA for their help throughout this ongoing process.”

There are no plans at this stage to release extra tickets for Northern Ireland’s group games against Ukraine in Lyon or Germany in Paris.

UEFA told the IFA on Thursday night that 98 per cent of top priority supporters were successful in obtaining tickets for those matches.