Extra tickets released for Middlesbrough's FA Cup clash with Chelsea FC

The tickets, for the game at the Riverside on Saturday, will only be available to Boro fans. Credit: PA Images

More than 3,000 extra tickets have been released for Middlesbrough's FA Cup quarter-final clash against Chelsea.

The tickets for Saturday's game at The Riverside, will only be available to Boro fans.

They have been returned by Chelsea, because of government sanctions against the club owner Roman Abramovich.

Chelsea Football Club has been given a licence so it can continue paying players and staff and fulfill its fixture list but there is a lot that they can’t do, given all commercial operations must now stop.

It means no new ticket sales for example and all merchandising outlets must be closed.

It comes after a 'bizarre' U-turn which saw Chelsea Football Club withdraw its request for Saturday's game at the Riverside to be held behind closed doors.

Chelsea had lobbied to play the tie with no spectators after the government blocked the clubs from selling away tickets due to owner Roman Abramovich's sanction. But on Tuesday afternoon the FA confirmed that this request has been removed.

Middlesbrough FC had accused Chelsea FC of being "grossly unfair" for requesting that no fans to be present.

In a statement on the club's website earlier this week, Middlesbrough FC called the suggestion "both bizarre and without any merit whatsoever". The club said, "To suggest that MFC and our fans should be penalised is not only grossly unfair but without any foundation.

"Given the reasons for these sanctions, for Chelsea to seek to invoke sporting 'integrity' as a reason for the game being played behind closed doors is ironic in the extreme."

As a result, 3,200 tickets are now up for grabs for fans on Teesside. They will be available to purchase for Middlesbrough fans with 11+ Priority Points from Wednesday 16 March at 10.30am.

Tickets will only be available to purchase online and will be limited to two per qualifying account.

The ticket office counters will not be open on Wednesday and tickets will not be available to purchase by the telephone.