Over 650 000 tickets sold for 2010 World Cup

Tuesday, November 10, 2009
By: 
Bathandwa Mbola

Cape Town - Tickets to the 2010 FIFA World Cup are in great demand with 650 527 tickets being sold so far, says the 2010 Local Organising Committee (LOC).

2010 LOC boss Danny Jordaan said of these tickets, 345 894 went to South Africans while 304 633 went to overseas fans. This, he said, was according to their data as of 28 September 2009.

He said the United States bought the most tickets with 82 603, followed by the United Kingdom with 48 926 and Germany with 23 924.

Jordaan, however, said the ticket sales by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and other African countries were disappointing.

"We are very disappointed by our neighboring countries because its not what we anticipated."

However, Jordaan expected that there would be an increase in the demand for tickets after the Final Draw of the teams, which will be held in December in Cape Town.

He said FIFA was working closely with international authorities to crack down on illegal tickets.

As the excitement surrounding the World Cup gains momentum, tickets have been in high demand worldwide which have led to illegal ticket sales.

"While genuine tickets were sold online exclusively via the official website FIFA.com, unscrupulous individuals were taking advantage of the great appeal of this event by trying to use the internet to sell tickets they do not possess," FIFA said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Jordaan said by the end of August, 67 999 people from around the world had applied to be volunteers during the football spectacle, with most of the overseas applications coming from the US.

Jordaan said the applications would be processed and interviews would soon be conducted to determine which applicants were successful.

On other developments, he said, construction of stadia was on track, coupled with great progress with regard to roads and transport, Information Communication Technologies, safety, security, and disaster management and electricity issues.

"The story of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa is a story of promise, potential, possibility and rich purpose," he told MPs on Tuesday.

He, however, raised concerns about the new names for towns and cities, saying that they might cause some confusion for tourists during the World Cup.

"The travelling fans are going to have difficulties to get to the places whose names are not clearly on the directional signs or on the airport destination boards," he said.

On vuvuzelas, he said, the football fraternity was determined that they want vuvuzelas to remain a permanent feature as the instruments play a crucial role in the motivation of players and keeps the fans' spirits high.

Meanwhile, Jordaan joked that they will be looking at the possibility of a Soccer World Cup for grannies.

"I think it is something that must be encouraged. So I will see whether we can have a grannies World Cup.'

Jordaan joked he would consult with the Grannies Football Association on the matter.

"Unfortunately in the World Cup there is no curtain raiser, so the grannies will not play an opening match," Jordaan said.