REVEALED: 5,000 ticketless fans estimated to have broken into Wembley for Euro 2020 final as UEFA official says three thugs entered for every one full-paying supporter two hours before kick off… but shambles will NOT effect 2030 World Cup bid
- More than 5,000 ticketless fans gained access to Wembley for the Euros final
- A huge breakdown of law and order saw thugs surge into the national stadium
- One UEFA official says that a surge occurred two hours before kick off
- Yet last weekend’s farce will do ‘minimal’ damage to 2030 World Cup bid
More than 5,000 ticketless fans gained access to last weekend’s England-Italy Euro 2020 final, according to a UEFA events manager at the game.
It was a huge breakdown of law and order, a potential terrorist threat and a grave health risk with strict coronavirus protocols ignored.
A separate UEFA source has told The Mail on Sunday that the estimate of ticketless fans is ‘in four figures,’ with FA chiefs due to provide answers to Parliament this week. The Digital Culture Media and Sport Committee have demanded a response from FA chief executive Mark Bullingham.
5,000 ticketless thugs are estimated to have broken into Wembley for the Euro 2020 final
Security barriers were compromised after a surge of thugs broke into the national stadium
The FA say they will carry out a full review and investigation in collaboration with the police, the Greater London Authority, the Safety Advisory Group and tournament delivery stakeholders.
The UEFA manager described how ‘at one point, two hours before kick-off, we anticipate for every one ticket-holder, three more gained access for a sustained period’ with a disabled access at Gate C among those forced open.
However, at UEFA, European football’s governing body, it is understood any damage done to a potential UK and Republic of Ireland 2030 World Cup bid will be minimal. The credit gained by the Government and Prime Minister Boris Johnson in preventing the breakaway European Super League will insulate the UK from any long-term harm. UEFA confirmed last week that Wembley will host the 2024 Champions League final.
Using TV footage, UEFA eyewitness accounts and social media video, the UEFA events manager, who spoke to The Mail on Sunday, has estimated that 5,000 more than the allocated 65,000-capacity crowd gained access to the stadium.
UEFA has launched an investigation while the FA will answer to Parliament next week
At one point, three ticketless thugs entered for every one full-paying supporter. Witnesses told of drug-dealing, drug consumption, drunken and aggressive behaviour in the capital
This could increase when UEFA’s ethics and disciplinary inspectors complete their investigations. The events manager, who wasn’t working in an official capacity on Sunday but attended the game, said: ‘At one point, two hours before kick-off, we anticipate for every one ticket holder, three more gained access for a sustained period.
‘Our requirements are that supporters should be filtered at the earliest opportunity, to separate genuine ticket-holders from fans who wish to just be a part of the atmosphere.
‘For major finals, we normally anticipate between five and eight per cent of supporters above any allocation will travel to the outer stadium area. This normally disperses before kick-off as fans seek out local bars, restaurants or fan parks to watch the match. This didn’t happen here.’
However, Sunday’s events are unlikely to harm the UK and Ireland’s 2030 World Cup bid with UEFA crediting Boris Johnson for helping stop the creation of the European Super League
Staff were ‘overwhelmed’ and authorities estimate up to 200,000 were in the Wembley area. The Metropolitan Police, responsible for law and order outside the stadium, denied that they failed in this task, though witnesses told of drug-dealing, drug consumption, drunken and aggressive behaviour, as well as male fans urinating in the streets.
The stadium perimeter and internal security are the FA’s responsibility. Those without tickets forced their way through turnstiles due to their large numbers and ‘tailgating’ genuine ticket-holders — squeezing through electronic turnstiles behind paying customers, who were threatened not to draw attention.
The UEFA source added. ‘From my position the lower northwest and northeast areas showed the largest sign of surging. Access and exit ways were indistinguishable from seated areas. Even in extra time I saw fans enter via unmanned turnstiles.’