UK Embassy in Rome will not sell Euro quarter-final tickets, FA has suggested

The British Embassy in Rome will not sell or distribute tickets for the Euro quarter-final match between England and Ukraine on Saturday, as previously suggested.

The FA said it was working with UEFA and the British Embassy in Rome “to make it as easy as possible to sell tickets to English residents in Italy” in a statement on Tuesday, but that did not happen.

English football fans have shared their frustration that VIPs are exempted from Italy’s isolation rules as countless Brits were barred from watching the quarter-final in Rome on Saturday.

Italy imposed a mandatory five-day quarantine on UK arrivals, meaning that even if people with tickets left now, there wouldn’t be enough time to self-isolate before the game.

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Last week, Time reported that the government was negotiating a deal that would allow UEFA and Fifa officials, politicians, sponsors and broadcasters to form bubbles by attending only football matches, meaning they wouldn’t not to isolate themselves upon their arrival.

Many VIPs are expected to enter and exit the country on the same day, or stay in hotels pre-booked for the tournament.

Kriss Tottman of Hertfordshire bought tickets to the quarter-finals two years ago but sold them back to UEFA after the restrictions were announced.

“The whole VIP thing stinks and in the end, as always, it comes down to money,” he said. I.

“You can guarantee that these VIPs aren’t isolated at the questionable Heathrow isolation stations, that’s for sure!”

He also asked why vaccinated people should not be allowed to go.

“It’s so confusing and not very encouraging given that you have paid flights, hotels and tickets, besides getting vaccinated as well,” he said.

“The advantage of vaccines is that we can resume a normal life without fear of being sick or hospitalized. “

Italy introduced the quarantine measure on UK travelers in response to the growing number of Delta cases in the UK.

It was announced that travel restrictions to the United States, Canada, Japan and other states in the European Union would be lifted if travelers could prove they are vaccinated or have recently tested negative for Covid -19.

An England fan said he would attend the match on Saturday in Rome without fear of Covid quarantine as he would travel from Germany.

Luke Curner, who lives in Helmstedt but is originally from Folkestone, Kent, bought the tickets in 2019 as the match fell on his birthday weekend – which he still does despite the postponement.

“I am delighted to see England in a major league but at the same time I am sad that there is not the same atmosphere due to the lack of English fans allowed to travel,” said the 36-year-old. . A German-speaking student told the PA news agency.

“I am very lucky to be in an EU country which allows me to travel with few restrictions.

“It was great watching the game in Germany, although my whole neighborhood knows I must be English and my wife hates me for waking our kids up when England scored – luckily I’m taking her to Rome for the game so she can’t hate me for too long. “

As a result, many English fans were forced to sell their tickets.

Warrick Howard of Leicestershire bought tickets through the voting system in 2019 for 140 euros (£ 120) each, but his plans for the match were curtailed by Italy’s five-day quarantine requirement for them. arrivals in the UK.

“Given the enormous pressure to get everyone vaccinated, there were ways to make it work for the fans attending this tournament, but UEFA and the EU made no effort to do it, “said the 37-year-old.

“I guess they were too busy organizing thousands of ‘no quarantine required’ exemptions for their few thousand VIPs.

“I thought about flying to Italy on Sunday June 27 and doing my five-day quarantine in an AirBnB apartment, so I would be free for the game if England were successful… but it would have taken a week of leave.”

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But not everyone agrees.

Seth Hemingway, 25, of Bournemouth, sold his quarterfinal tickets to a ‘lovely’ English family living in Cyprus – a cushion to blow away from not attending the event himself.

He said the isolation rules were frustrating but fair.

“Football fans should not be treated any differently from the general population,” he said. I, adding that he could not blame Italy for trying to reduce the Delta variant.

“The bigger issue is why we didn’t close the borders with India earlier, thus allowing the Delta variant to be imported into the UK,” he explained.

Matt Willis, Euro 2020 fan ambassador for Football Supporters Europe fan group, said that although fans are squeamish they can’t go, most understand they’ve been in a relatively lucky situation with six of the seven games in the UK.

By comparison, Czech Republic supporters could only have attended three of their matches.

When asked if any English fans would find loopholes and leave, he replied “there will be”.

“We know that there were a few Germans who entered yesterday, and they found loopholes.

“They will be there, and if they are willing to risk losing an opportunity to go to the semi-finals at Wembley, if England were to get there, ultimately it is the risk.”

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