There was a jovial mood at the FNB Stadium as fans went back to live soccer for the first time since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic in March last year. Picture: ALON SKUY
There was a jovial mood at the FNB Stadium as fans went back to live soccer for the first time since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic in March last year. Picture: ALON SKUY

More than 1,500 football fans who want to watch Bafana Bafana’s 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifier against Zimbabwe at the FNB Stadium on November 11 will have to fork out R100 per ticket, Stadium Management SA announced in Johannesburg on Thursday.

Stadium Management SA CEO Bertie Grobbelaar added that only 2,000 spectators in total will be allowed to watch the penultimate Group G match.

The match will kick off at 9pm and those who want to buy tickets will have to do so online (www.ticketmaster.co.za) from noon on Friday, Grobbelaar said.

There are 1,584 tickets for the general public. In addition there are 200 complimentary tickets to be issued by the SA Football Association (Safa) and 216 set aside for VIP guests and the event organisers, he said.

Tickets will be sold in twos and no single tickets will be available. 

“It is important to remember that when you register to buy a ticket the names of both people should be provided on the website and the ticket will be issued per name,” said Grobbelaar.

Safa chief medical officer Thulani Ngwenya said all those who want to attend the game must be fully vaccinated and will be required to produce a vaccination certificate, match tickets and their identification to enter the stadium.

The Bafana match against Zimbabwe will be the second to have fans after Safa kicked off the drive to have them back with last month’s qualifier against Ethiopia, which Hugo Broos’s side won 1-0 to remain a point clear of Ghana on top of their group with two matches to go.

Since March 2020 there have been no fans allowed at sporting venues because of the coronavirus pandemic. But after the government recently relaxed the lockdown rules, the sports ministry announced that sporting codes can apply to have a maximum of 2,000 spectators at stadiums.

Ngwenya said Safa had hoped to have more than 2,000 spectators for the Zimbabwe match but government rules, which have not changed, dictated that the association stick to the same numbers as the match against Ethiopia.

Ngwenya and Grobbelaar said hosting matches with so few spectators cost a lot more than having a decent crowd in the stands and that is why they are pushing for the government to further relax the rules.

“To be honest with you, it cost a lot more,” said Grobbelaar without disclosing the numbers. “There’s no way with 2,000 spectators you can come close to covering all of those additional costs. At this point as stadium management we’re assisting by reducing our rates and providing discounts, but the costs are carried by Safa.”

Ngwenya said they want people back at the stadiums but full capacity can happen only when the country achieves herd immunity, meaning more than 40-million people should be vaccinated in SA.

“We want to bring back football to where it’s supposed to be,” he said.


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