In one of the most brutally organized sporting events in Champions League history, a night which UK Member of Parliament Ian Byrne described as “one of the most horrendous experiences of my life.” and which an independent investigator stated that the event nearly turned into one of “mass fatality catastrophe,” — a verdict has finally been reached which holds UEFA accountable for the Champions League Final fiasco.
UEFA released this statement today through their General Secretary Theodore Theodoridis:
“We recognize the negative experiences of those supporters on the day and, with this scheme, we will refund fans who had bought tickets and who were the most affected by the difficulties in accessing the stadium.
“We have taken into account a huge number of views expressed both publicly and privately and we believe we have devised a scheme that is comprehensive and fair.
“We value the input from the Liverpool FC supporter organizations Spirit of Shankly (SOS) and Liverpool Disabled Supporters Association (LDSA) as well as the open and transparent dialogue throughout this period.
“UEFA will implement a special refund scheme for fans who were most affected when accessing the Stade de France on 28 May 2022.
“Refunds will be available to all fans with tickets for gates A, B, C, X, Y and Z where the most difficult circumstances were reported.
“Given these criteria, the special refund scheme covers all of the Liverpool FC ticket allocation for the Final, i.e. 19,618 tickets.”
This is a solid first step into accepting blame, and hopefully will force UEFA to do better, though it still does not excuse what they did in the planning of that Champions League Final at Stade de France.
UEFA has noted that Real Madrid fans will not get automatic refunds, and will have to ‘claim refunds, depending on whether they meet the criteria’ through UEFA customer service.