Latin American Fans Express Discontent with Football Viewing Expenses for the Affluent.


Latin American Fans Express Discontent with Football Viewing Expenses for the Affluent.

action sports news, crazy sports news, extreme sports essay, new extreme sports

In soccer-crazed South America, where passion for the sport transcends social boundaries, the experience of watching stars like Lionel Messi has become unattainable for most, with ticket prices soaring.

During the September qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup, devoted fans throughout the continent voiced their dissatisfaction with the steep costs of witnessing their favorite teams in action.

“For me, affording a ticket is simply impossible. It takes away from the enjoyment,” lamented Pablo Gonzalez, a 49-year-old university maintenance worker from the Colombian town of Barranquilla, where his national team was set to face Uruguay on Thursday.

The average ticket price for the match stands at $102, a significant sum in a country where the minimum monthly wage is $270. According to an AFP survey, these ticket prices rank as the second highest in the region for the qualifiers.

In Argentina, the victors of the 2022 World Cup, fans hoping to catch Messi in action were left disheartened as the football federation set ticket prices for Thursday’s match against Paraguay at an average of $120.

The nation is grappling with an annual inflation rate of 120 percent and poverty levels of 40 percent. Argentina’s football federation has rolled out a subscription program, offering privileged access to match tickets. The “Gold” category demands $14,000 for a three-year pass, accompanied by an array of perks.

“Even for me, it was quite a hefty expense to buy tickets for my entire family. It was a significant cost, just like it is for everyone else. But who am I to determine ticket prices? If it were up to me, I’d let people in for free,” remarked Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni during a press conference.

“What can I do? My hands are tied.” Some prices are turning “something as universally loved as football into an exclusive affair,” protested fan Candela Thompson to the state news agency Telam.

In Brazil, prices have surged over the past month, with ticket costs rising from an average of $63 to $97 for Thursday’s match against Venezuela in central Cuiaba. Chilean captain Arturo Vidal, celebrated for his humble beginnings, also voiced his discontent.

“The tickets are pricey. I’ve already spoken to the president of the football association to lower them a bit. We need a packed stadium,” Vidal stated on social media before a match against Colombia in September.

As per Chilean media reports, unlike in previous qualifiers, it took several days for tickets to sell out. In Uruguay, football authorities conceded they had made an error, as exorbitant prices resulted in thousands of vacant seats for a match against Chile in September.

“We made a mistake,” acknowledged Ignacio Alonso, the president of the country’s football association, in remarks to local media. “The evidence is that the stadium should have sold 40,000 tickets, but only managed to sell about 31,500.”

In light of the “backlash against the prices,” he made a slight reduction in ticket costs. The most affordable spots for a match against Brazil on October 17 are now priced at $22, which is $3 less than the previous game.


Leave a Comment